SAD Advice from St. Joe Healthcare PDF Print E-mail
Written by Dr. Niru Prasad   

SAD Advice from St. Joe Healthcare

Do you feel "down" during the dark winter months? You’re not alone. Niru Prasad, MD, on staff at St. Joseph Mercy Community Healthcare System, says winter depression strikes many and is more evident among women, the elderly and those with a family history of depression. The condition is call seasonal affective disorder (SAD), and while it can be hard to cope with, winter depressions usually disappear when the sun is shining again.

If you suffer from SAD, what can you do? Dr. Prasad notes that therapists recommend a variety of approaches. They include:

Using stronger bulbs to light up your living areas.

Getting outside. Walking or jogging can lift your mood.

Eating a well balanced diet and occasionally adding extra carbohydrates in the form of sweets. This causes the brain to release Serotonin, a neurotransmitter responsible for mood lifting. Just don’t mix that sweet snack with protein rich meals.

Getting a complete checkup. Major or minor depressions might be due to physical problems such as thyroid disorders.

Thinking positively. Check out the new spring fashions. And remember, spring isn’t far behind the blustery winds and snowdrifts. Close your eyes and let your imagination transport you to a warm, sandy beach. That should cheer you up.