by in Health information 25 December 2019

Seasonal depression, Késako?

This seasonal affective disorder is a form of depression that appears in the fall and can stay until the beginning of spring. Already in 2015, there were more than 300 million people in the world suffering from depression with a higher predisposition in women than in men.

It is due to the change of season and more precisely to the lack of natural light. There is evidence that a decrease in brightness results in an increase in the production of the sleep hormone: melatonin. This leads to a deregulation of the biological clock which has the effect of shifting or increasing our hours of sleep.

In addition, there is a decrease in the production of the well-being hormone: serotonin. Which explains some states such as lethargy, weariness, a drop in motivation, a change in moods, a sensation of not being in the best of shape, a desire to hide under the duvet, anxiety, a lower libido or a desire to Sweet.

Some tools to keep your spirits up this fall:

Expose yourself as much as possible to the light: do not hesitate to point the tip of your nose outside even if the weather is gray or practise bright. These will allow you to regulate the production of melatonin and serotonin.

Practicing a sport: the ideal would be to do 30 to 1 hour of walking a day so you will accumulate the pleasure of a good bowl of air and light while you are spending. Sport promotes the production of the pleasure hormone: the endorphin.

Consume anti-depressing foods: During this period, prefer seasonal fruits and vegetables. In addition, some foods such as orange, kiwi, Clementine, turnip, leek, pumpkin and cabbage are to be encouraged. These allies against seasonal depression are rich in vitamin C (anti-fatigue and anti-oxidants), Omega 3 (anti-depression) and water (anti-dehydration).

And the plants in all this?

St. John’s wort is the plant to be used in the case of mild to moderate depression. The Hyperforin and hypericin present in the flowering tops of this plant promote the relief of symptoms such as fatigue, disinterest and anxiety. They also improve the quality of our sleep. Remain vigilant as the St. John’s wort interacts with many medications. Don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

Supplementation in Omega 3 and more specifically in EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) helps to improve the symptoms of depression in general. This idea comes from the observation that people with depression often have an omega-3 deficiency and that the most consuming populations of omega-3 sources are less susceptible to this disease. Finally, Omega 3 can be proposed as an alternative when conventional treatment is not supported.

If the symptoms do not go away with winter, talk to your doctor or psychologist.