- Alternative & Natural Medicine
Stop spring fever naturally
What is spring fever?
When the winter is over and the nature starts to awaken, this phenomenon is widely seen in many people around the northern hemisphere of the globe.
Some research has been done in the past, but it is still not entirely explored.
Some or all of the following symptoms may be present. Either partially or (more probably) fully:
- It feels very hard to collect your thoughts, you are experiencing brain fog all day long and it is quite hard to do any work.
- Your motivation to get up from the bed, make breakfast, drink coffee, get shower and go to work goes ... back into the bed.
- You are yawning the whole day and coffee does not help at all.
- Stairs become very steep. You need to catch breath and have a few seconds rest between floors.
- Knee and elbow joints start to ache without reason. (even when simply sitting on a chair or laying on the sofa)
- Food has no taste and is hard to chew. (you are still hungry though)
- Bright light and loud noise irritates you.
- Dark rainy March days make you moody.
- Sunny days make you sneeze and hate light.
- All you have strength to do when you get back at home is to sit in front of the TV and just vegetate there.
Sounds familiar so far?
Why this happens?
Reasons are not 100% explored, but the following reasons are found as culprit:
- Lower level of "happiness" hormones. If serotonin levels are low, your mood and motivation drop to zero. Some medical journals claim, that serotonin levels are rising on sunny bright days, and there are not so many bright days in the winter months. Hence, the serotonin levels are naturally lower in spring.
- Higher Melatonin levels. This is a response to the lower serotonin. Your brain and nervous system needs serotonin to operate properly (apart from being happiness hormone, serotonin is also a neurotransmitter). When serotonin levels are low, your brain signals you to have more sleep by raising melatonin levels, so he can rest. Melatonin is also called "sleep hormone".
- Temperature fluctuations. March is the most agile month. It ranges from blizzard to hot sunny day every few days (in northern hemisphere) and your body tries to adjust. You change clothes often, so you don't sweat or don't freeze and your body goes mad trying to maintain 36.7 degrees Celsius (normal body temperature). Soon the temperature changes fatigue your whole body system and It gives up.
- Blood pressure. If you are sufferer from either low or high BP - the temperature changes will have even worse effect on you. You may get fatigue and insomnia from High blood pressure or the typical migraine headaches from low blood pressure. (higher temperature dilates blood vessels and drops blood pressure, lower temperature constricts them and raises blood pressure)
- Food. Normally we eat plenty of fat and carbohydrate food the whole winter. Even if it does protect the body in winter days, the fat is harder to digest and carbs, while giving plenty of energy and warmth will only add few more pounds when you abuse them at spring.
- Vitamins. Real natural ones from raw fruits and vegetables are hard to obtain even in present day world. They just don't grow in winter. Most countries import them from the southern hemisphere, but they are rarely fresh and have some preservatives that you don't want. Also, the price of imported goods is always higher and you skip this area of the grocery shop. (And no - most frozen veggies and fruits are quite depleted of good vitamins. You can still benefit from them but it's not the same as fresh fruit.)
What can you do?
A lot. Even if some symptoms cannot be cured but only alleviated, it is quite easy.
Regarding "happiness" hormones. There are few things that can help raise them as high as normal levels (even higher).
- Eat your favorite meal. Even if it is a bit "unhealthy", your favorite food is the main antidepressant for your body. It is explained as the task-reward-reponse in psychology. (remember how depressed people in movies overeat with ice-cream) "Reward" yourself and you will feel better. (don't go to bed after the meal, go outside and walk).
- Chocolate. Dark. At least 70% cocoa powder. This is by far the best serotonin stimulant. You will feel better immediately.
- Love and sex. Dial the phone of your beloved during the day to prepare him/her. Invite to a dinner, have a good talk. Spend the whole night together and if you are tired - sleep while hugging and spooning tight ;)
- Herbs, such as st. John's wort are very good to increase serotonin levels too. Get prepared tea bags or a sprout of the herb and boil for 15 minutes. Drink the tea with few drops of lemon (add honey if you prefer It sweat).
Higher melatonin levels need to go naturally low, but this is not something that you can do (healthy enough) with herbs or stimulants.
- Get plenty of sleep. If your brain needs rest - don't deprive it with Coffee, Tea, Soda or other caffeinated or otherwise stimulating things. 7 hours minimum and get to bed no later than 11 PM.
- Have a glass of red wine before sleep. Just one.
- (or if you can't tolerate alcohol...) Have a cup of mint tea with few drops of Valerian root extract. Both red wine and mint tea will calm you and promote better sleep.
Temperature fluctuations aren't something under your control.
I am sorry. You just need to endure them. Your body will complain and get a bit tired while maintaining balance, but it is the way to go.
Blood pressure on the other hand, CAN be controlled naturally.
- Low blood pressure sufferers will get hit hardest, so they need to increase the intake of fluids. Plenty of herbal teas is the best way to go. They will increase the blood pressure naturally. The best ones being chamomile and lime.
- Another help for low blood pressure is a glass of red wine with the dinner, just don't over abuse.
- Yet another better trick for low blood pressure is a glass of freshly squeezed tomato juice with a pinch of sea salt. (also very good for lowering cholesterol). Need to be taken at morning on an empty stomach.
- If nothing helps and you still feel very low - drink a cup of black coffee. Why should you suffer, when it is in the kitchen or behind the corner?
- High blood pressure people can also benefit herbal remedies such as birch tree bark, boiled for 10 minutes in water and then cooled. Birch tree bark gets the excess fluids out of the body and relieve the strain on kidneys.
- Long walks outside when the weather is cool will raise blood pressure a bit, and the reverse is valid for warm days.
- Warm days tend to lower the blood pressure naturally. Go for a walk. As much as you feel comfortable. Just don't stay at home in front of the TV. This will help no one.
Food and Vitamins need to be taken seriously as well. At spring you need more vitamins and more proteins. What is a good meal?
- Chicken. Roasted or boiled. Preferably roasted. Stick with the breast but don't throw the other parts if you already bought them. Just remove the skin.
- Turkey. Much better choice if you can afford it. Less fat and better proteins than chicken.
- Veal. If you can afford it, the best source of creatine is the red meat. More creatine = less muscle cramps and joint pain.
- Milk and cheese, if it is okay with you - drink a glass of milk, have a slice of cheese with the dinner while drinking wine - bliss.
- All naturally growing fruits and vegetables in your area in this part of the year are welcome. Green leafy salads are preferred, with olives, fresh lemon juice, spring radishes and freshly sprouted spices.
- Fish. Preferably ocean fish. From good known source. Fish eyes need to be round and transparent. If the eyes are white (-ish) - it is long dead. Switch to better store.
- Eggs. Even if you are prone to high cholesterol - have at least one egg per week. If you are not - get a boiled egg or an omelette every day.
- Natural Vitamin C. Best sources are green peppers, rose hips, lemons and most of the raw fruits and vegetables.
Avoid smoked food, avoid fried food, avoid frozen food. Try to get as raw as possible.
Try not to use metal knives when cutting fruits and vegetables for salads, because iron destroys vitamin C. (You can break leafy salads with fingers, just wash your hands ;) ).
And more important - don't lay to bed at least two hours after dinner. Have a walk outside, greet your neighbors, walk your dog, or just grab a cup of warm tea and walk in a straight street in the neighborhood until you feel light.
Sleeping with full tummy = fatigue.
Good luck and stay healthy!