I’m a bit late posting these winter survival tips I realise, with summer in full swing and about to launch my summer campaign, but the magic of the internet means the post will be around forever! So, if you’re finding it tough going next winter, remember that you’re not alone and that there are magic foods, pills and potions you can eat to help feel better!
Everything seems better when the sun shines and I know that I am much better in the sunshine. The longer I live in the UK the harder the winters seem to get. I don’t think they are necessarily getting any worse but life seems more stressful and busy, and I seem less able to cope. That sounds like an over-exaggeration, and I should point out that by “cope” I don’t mean that I am having a nervous breakdown, I mean I get upset about things more easily and my brain functions at a much lower and slower level. My colleagues have even commented on the difference in me!
There are a few little winter survival tips that I use to help get me through the winter months, and here’s a little round up of them.
Nature’s Answer Liquid Vitamin D3 Drops 4,000iu
With all the coverage in the media about sun care and vitamin D production in the body, I’d say you would have to have been hiding under a rock (from the sun) to not be aware that the body makes vitamin D when your skin is exposed to the sun’s rays. In this modern age, our lifestyle does not always allow us to be outside soaking up the sun’s rays. Living in Great Britain (i.e. nowhere near the equator) also means that the sun we do get in the wintertime is not strong enough for us to produce vitamin D in our bodies – it has to be above 45 degrees in the sky. Our bodies store vitamin D in the liver, but can only store around three months supply. This means come January time, if we haven’t had a winter sun break away, our vitamin D levels are depleted. Winter Survival Tips- make sure you get Vitamin D.
There are good sources of vitamin D that we can incorporate into our diets, such as fish, egg yolks and raw milk, but not everybody likes (or can tolerate) these food groups so a vitamin D supplement can be a good choice for these people. There are two types of vitamin D supplements available, and I cannot stress the importance of choosing the right one – vitamin D2 – Ergocalciferol, is a synthetic form of vitamin D, and vitamin D3 – cholecalciferol, sourced in commercial supplements from fish liver oil or oil from sheep’s wool. The latter is the better to look for, whilst D3 supplements have been shown to decrease the chances of mortality, D2 has been shown to have no effect[i].
Vitamin D has been linked to the prevention and regulation of so many conditions including – osteoporosis, cancer, hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, Crohn’s disease, ageing, dementia, eczema, psoriasis, Alzheimer’s, insomnia, infertility and depression.
Nature’s Answer Vitamin D3 Drops deliver 4,000iu per two drops. The RDA for the average adult is 400iu. It’s difficult to overdose on vitamin D and even if you were to take 8,000iu every day it’s incredibly unlikely that you would. Vitamin D is shown to work on areas of the brain associated with depression, however, it is not yet fully understood exactly how vitamin D works on the brain. Also, low vitamin D levels in the blood have been linked to depression.
Terranova Cordyceps, Rhodiola & Ginseng
The three main ingredients in this product – Cordyceps, Rhodiola and Ginseng, are all superb adaptogenic herbs that can help the body through physical change and balance the metabolism. American Ginseng promotes healthy adrenal function, and Rhodiola Root supports healthy nerve function. What’s more is the three main ingredients have also been shown to have antidepressant effects, so may help with SAD during the winter months. Terranova supplements are all based on synergistic formulas to facilitate optimum absorption and maximum bioavailability of nutrients.
Amazing Grass Berry Antioxidant Green Superfood Drink Powder
For me I don’t feel the difference when I take Amazing Grass, it’s more when I don’t take it that I feel the difference. It’s a great way of getting an array of nutrients into your diet – read more about that here. I’m also a big fan of the chocolate greens powder (and Amazing Meal when I’m training) but ORAC Green Superfood is my new favourite – with an ORAC rating of 40,000 per serving. To put this in perspective a 3.5oz serving of carrots has 210 per serving, and plums 949.
What are your winter survival tips?