Well, here we are in the middle of the winter and flu season. Ideally, everyone should have gotten plenty of sunshine during the warmer days to last them through the winter. Sunshine on the skin is the best source of vitamin D. And, vitamin D is one vitamin that can be stored in the body for long periods of time. However, in certain winter months, this supply of vitamin D can run low. And, when that happens a person becomes a lot more susceptible to getting a cold or flu.
Sunshine and Vitamin D
Here in Southern Utah, it’s cold in the morning and warm in the afternoons even though it’s still January. I like to try to wear a short sleeve shirt under a long sleeve sweater. Then, when I go to pick up my daughter from school, I can take the sweater off and get some sunshine on my face and arms. I try to roll the window down, because apparently, some of the rays of the sun don’t get through the glass as well.
I also try to take some vitamin D3 pills occasionally if I remember, just for extra insurance. I think having a proper amount of vitamin D will also help you to avoid the Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) in which people start to feel lethargic and depressed.
Exercise and Serotonin
I suppose that you could wear a short sleeve shirt on a sunny day in colder parts of the U.S. and go for a run or bike ride. The exercise will warm you up at least and increase your serotonin levels, which brings on happy feelings. You only need about 15-30 minutes a day of a brisk walk for that. If there is a place in your house where the sun is coming through the window on you while you exercise, that would be doubly beneficial.
There have been studies showing daily walks for two weeks to be as effective as taking an anti-depressant. Wouldn’t walking be a cheaper, more natural, and healthier way to go. Being happier is a boost to your immune system. So, try to get some sunlight and serotonin if you can.
Citrus fruits are considered to be the sunshine fruits. It feels like you are having a bite of sunshine when you open up a juicy orange. It may or may not have vitamin D, but it sure seems to bring some sunshine in. At least the vitamin C, calcium and potassium are extra beneficial for your moods and health.
You may also need to bring in some spiritual sunshine into your soul on a cold and dreary day. Don’t forget to take the time daily to feed your soul with the light of Christ by prayer and scripture reading. I believe that that is an excellent way to feel some inner sunshine and have that healing power within.
Winter time is a challenge to your health with all of the cold and inside living. It’s very important to have enough vitamin D through sunshine or pills. Take time to exercise, have citrus fruits, and work on your spirituality to help you keep your mood up.