Do you sometimes find it difficult to get through the day when you are surrounded by tons of paperwork, hectic schedules and trying to find the perfect balance for work, family, friends and yourself? Do you sometimes feel it is almost impossible to get everything done and make everyone happy? Will you need a little boost of energy, happiness and joy? Look no further than these natural mood boosters to help lift your spirits up.
Lightboxes have long been used to treat patients who suffer from seasonal affective disorders. But did you know they are also effective for treating non-seasonal dips in mood as well? Studies have been done and found that when you are exposed to bright, artificial light, the hormone serotonin is naturally lifted. This is why people are generally cheerful and happier during the spring and summer seasons as the daylight hours are longer. Rainy and dreary seasons tend to bring people’s emotions and moods down. Lightboxes have also been found to bring your melatonin production to normal, therefore promoting a much well-needed and restful sleep at night. When you are able to sleep well, you feel better and you are in a better mood.
When you are anxious or undergoing stress, you may find yourself experiencing shortness of breath (also known as dyspnea). This is when you feel you are suffocating, your chest feels tight and you feel like you cannot seem to catch your breath. One way to counter this is to practice yogic breathing. Another term for yogic breathing is pranayama and this has been found to be able to reduce the stress levels after one session. The most common practice of yogic breathing is diaphragmatic breathing. Your diaphragm is actually the most efficient muscle of breathing. Located at the base of your lungs, your abdominal muscles help to move the diaphragm to empty the lungs in a powerful manner.
Turn To Turmeric
Studies had been done on turmeric and found that it is equally as effective as prescribed antidepressants used for treating depression. You can prepare a shot of turmeric by mixing ½ teaspoon of turmeric and black pepper with 30ml of cold water. For a stronger effect, you can blend turmeric, black pepper, fresh lemon juice, cayenne pepper and ginger.
Consume Vitamin B9
Vitamin B9, by its other name folate, plays an important role in regulating mood. This vitamin helps the brain to convert tryptophan (a type of dietary amino acid) into chemical 5-HTP, which is converted into serotonin that makes you calm down and feel good. Vitamin B9 also helps you to deal with your stress as it supports healthy adrenal function. Eating a variety of vegetables and beans is your natural way to get your vitamin B9 fix. Some examples of vegetables and fruits you can incorporate into your diet include: brussels sprouts, kidney beans, black-eyed peas, lentils, black beans, mushrooms, kale, spinach, romaine, broccoli, bananas, lemons, swiss chard, asparagus and melons.
Similar to turmeric, studies have been found that this red spice is as effective as prescribed antidepressants used in combating mild depression. Drink saffron before bed to calm down your mood. Warm a cup of milk and drop in five threads of saffron mixed with ½ teaspoon of cinnamon powder.
It is without a doubt that when you exercise, your body releases a type of chemicals known as endorphins. When endorphins are released, they react with your receptors in the brain that reduces how you feel and think about pain. Similar to morphine, endorphins set off a happy and positive feeling in you. It has been found that if you exercise regularly, your body releases less cortisol (also known as stress hormone) as compared to those who do not exercise. This study has proven that if you exercise regularly, you are likely to experience less stress.
Flash Those Pearly Whites
Smiling is not the easiest thing to do when you feel overwhelmed with everything and stress is making you feel like crying or breaking down. But fake it till you make it technique will help your heart health and gradually lift your mood. Just try this method, stretch your lips from side to side into a tiny grin. Slowly stretch that tiny grin into a bigger smile and showing some teeth. Hold the smile on your face for a quick few seconds. Now, did you feel much better?
Spritz Some Scent
Aromatherapy has been known to rejuvenate your senses through the olfactory nerve in the nose. This makes essential oil a very popular item these days as more and more people are affected by stress. Essential oils are very easy to incorporate into your daily life. You can put them into a diffuser at home or in the office or in the car, use them in your warm bath, or you can even carry along a portable roll-on vial in your bag.