3 Ways to Stay Well During the Darker Months of the Year

by | Updated: December 3rd, 2016 | Read time: 2 minutes

When the seasons change, and daylight hours start to become scare, it’s hard not to miss the sun’s light lingering into the evening. Life becomes stiller, and we tend to spend more time indoors. If you start to feel cooped up or a little blue heading into the winter months, you’re not alone. Luckily, there are a number of ways you can naturally support your mood and general well-being.

Winter Wellness Tips

Soak up the sun

It may be chilly, but getting outdoors more often is important during the darker seasons. Exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet rays will help increase your body’s vitamin D levels. Besides contributing to bone health and calcium absorption, vitamin D is important for healthy immunity and proper nervous system function.*

Supplement with vitamin D

During this time of year, however, you may be bundled up to keep warm or spending less time outside due to fewer daylight hours. Taking a vitamin D supplement can be an ideal way to make sure you’re getting enough of this vital nutrient, especially if your levels already are low. (To find out if your vitamin D level, ask your healthcare provider to order a blood test called 25 hydroxy-vitamin D. Most laboratories report normal levels to be greater than or equal to 30 ng/mL.)

The recommended dose of vitamin D is 2,000 IU per day for maintenance, and up to 5,000 IU, depending on your blood test results. Even those who live in super-sunny places like Hawaii can have low vitamin D levels, because some people have genetic mutations that result in vitamin D receptor defects. These people have to take much higher doses of the nutrient in order to reach adequate blood levels.

There are two types of vitamin D available in supplement form: vitamin D2, which is derived from vegetarian sources, and vitamin D3, which is non-vegetarian. It has been reported that vitamin D3 may be three times more effective at raising vitamin D levels in the blood, and maintaining levels long-term, than other supplemental forms of vitamin D.*

Reap the benefits of Rhodiola rosea

Another go-to supplement to support mood and well-being this time of year is Rhodiola rosea, an herb that grows in the mountainous regions of Europe and Asia. Rhodiola is categorized as an adaptogen, which means it can help increase resistance to physical and biological stressors. This herb may help support overall well-being by supporting mental clarity, helping to fatigue and augmenting energy. It’s also a source of antioxidants that can help protect your body during times of mental and physical stress.*

The recommended dose of Rhodiola rosea is 1,400 mg, standardized to contain 3 percent rosavins and 1 percent salidrosides, taken once daily in the morning.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.