Flowing with the Time Change
This weekend, we turned back the clocks and continue on the journey towards the shortest day of the year next month…
How does your body adjust to this change?
For many, this time of the year can be a challenge. We gain a bit of daylight in the morning, but then find the nights becoming longer and longer as well as the temperatures becoming colder and colder.. With this shift, our routines and energy levels change a bit. It can feel like a bit of a shock as our bodies settle into this adjustment.
I’ve lived in different parts of the country throughout my life and it’s always been an interesting experiment adjusting to the time change. During my time in Seattle, I found myself hunkered down in pj’s by 5pm researching tools to boost my mood during those dark, damp evenings..
We’ve come a long way since those days and I am excited to share a guide with you that will support your physical, mental and emotional health during this time of year. These are tried and true tools that I’ve used and integrate into clients protocols during this time of year as well.
Cheers to flowing with the seasons!
SECURE A SOLID SLEEP ROUTINE.
Go to bed and rise at the same time every day. This will support your natural circadian rhythm.
Integrate sleep supportive herbs before bed like:
SKULLCAP: nervine, relieves anxiety and hypersensitivity
LAVENDER: sedative, nervine, anti-bacterial
ROSE: astringent, mood boosting, anti-inflammatory and tonifying
PEPPERMINT: anti-caterrhal (removes excess mucus), anti-inflammatory to gut lining
PASSION FLOWER: nervine, anti-spasmodic, hypotension, relieves irritability
MUGWORT: bitter, antidepressant, nervine
Our favorite blend is Nightly Nervine from Turn to Nature to be enjoyed while winding down for the evening!
CREATE A SLEEP SANCTUARY.
This means no electronics in the bedroom. Use a good ol’ battery operated alarm clock! Set the mood for a peaceful and restorative environment with candles and low lighting. Clear out the clutter. Your mind is busy enough. This room should be dedicated to simplicity and invoke a sense of peace. We like to say that your sleep sanctuary is to be used for sleep and sex.. no work, no electronics.. Just bliss!
SUPPORT YOUR BRAIN BEFORE BED.
One of my go-to tools that I keep on my nightstand and in my travel bag is melatonin.
I prefer BioPure’s Liposomal Melatonin is primarily used to support normal sleep patterns and cognitive function.*
Melatonin is a hormone produced mainly in the pineal gland of the brain during the nighttime hours. It is involved with regulating the sleep-wake cycle in humans as well as circadian rhythms throughout the animal kingdom. Darkness stimulates the pineal gland to produce melatonin and light inhibits it. Natural melatonin, and the synthetic forms that are being developed, have hypnotic and sleep-promoting actions, without hangover, withdrawal, or other side effects, and they are proving to be a useful supplemental support. The mechanism by which melatonin promotes sleep appears to be largely due to its effect on specific receptors in the hypothalamus “sleep switch”
I pair Melatonin with my favorite herbal sleep mask from our friends at Collective Hand
EXPOSE YOUR BODY TO NATURAL LIGHT EVERY DAY.
Natural light boosts serotonin levels in the brain and can have a similar effect to antidepressants. Start the day by spending a few moments outside in the early light.
What’s this you may ask? It’s a form of light therapy to adjust the body’s vibrations to frequencies that result in boosting health and harmony. Each color is related to different systems. We use chromotherapy lights in our infrared saunas in both of our wellness centers. Read more about chromotherapy on my blog here: http://www.sunshinekates.com/blog/chromotherapy-sauna-benefits-color-therapy-explained?rq=chromotherapy
INVEST IN A LIGHT BOX, AKA ‘A HAPPY LAMP’.
I spent many years in Seattle, and only wished I learned about them earlier during my time there. You can find them here: https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_4_16?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=light+box+for+sad+therapy&sprefix=light+box+for+sa%2Caps%2C152&crid=PO765XMA98QQ&rh=i%3Aaps%2Ck%3Alight+box+for+sad+therapy
LOVE UP YOUR DIGESTIVE SYSTEM.
Your gut is your second brain and 90-95% of serotonin is released from the gut. Support a healthy and happy gut biome with naturally fermented foods like sauerkraut, kimchee, miso, kefir and fermented coconut water. These foods help keep the good bugs happy. One of my favorite tools that I keep stocked in my refrigerator is Gut Shots by Farmhouse Culture. A shot a day keeps the bugs happy and kickin’!
TUNE UP THE ADRENALS.
The body needs time to adjust and acclimate to this change without being overstimulated. Adaptogen herbs like Holy Basil and Cordyceps mushrooms like Reishi and Maitake helps soothe and support the adrenals. With the pace of life and extra stimulation of technology, our adrenals tend to run in an overstimulated state. Adrenal overload can interfere with hormonal radiance, restful sleep, balanced moods and every day flow.
Here are some of our favorite picks :
I would love to hear what your favorite tools are to support your body during this time of year!