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Beating the winter blues

There is something about the holidays that fills your entire body with joy. Joy from being with family, staying inside more with people you love, holiday cheer all around, chilly weather as an excuse to warm up by the fire, and sweets and treats from now until the new year. With all the joy comes a world of other emotions too.

Being around your entire family can be a little stressful at times. Trying to put down work at home can be overwhelming when you’re invested in a big project. As a student, you’re anticipating finals right around the corner. Not to mention, cooking, cleaning and  worrying about your weight when it seems like the holidays are solely for eating. The list could go on, so while we appreciate being around family, taking a break from our normal busy everyday lives, remember to be extra kind to others and especially yourself.

Holidays can be a source of light during these literal darker times — the sun goes down at 5 p.m., so getting up can seem a little more difficult. The cold also affects  your joints and bones. However, a great way to treat your body right is to fill it with what it’s missing.

Did you know your body must have vitamin D to absorb calcium and promote bone growth? So during the winter when the days are darker and nights are longer, it is harder to get that essential vitamin D for healthy bone growth and calcium absorption. Taking vitamin D supplements or eating foods rich in it during the winter can help with chronic pain, strengthen bones in children, especially, and prevent autoimmune diseases. Not only that but released an article on the benefits of vitamin D and how it can drastically affect our moods.

 “Research has shown that vitamin D might play an important role in regulating mood and warding off depression. In one study, scientists found that people with depression who received vitamin D supplements noticed an improvement in their symptoms,” according to the website.  

Self-care starts with your health. Taking vitamin D supplements in the winter can drastically improve your physical and mental health, taking one stress off of this holiday season.

Another great trick to calm the holiday nerves and remember the joy the holidays can bring you is simply going on  walks. is a great resource to use when looking for answers to how beneficial a little movement can be on your mental well-being.

Being cooped up inside all day, as appealing as that may sound, can take a toll on your body and mind. How many of us have seen “The Shining,” am I right?

“Walking reduces stress, anxiety and fatigue. Physically active people have up to a 30% reduced risk of becoming depressed, and staying active helps those who are depressed recover,” according to the website.

 Not only can it reduce those holiday blues, a brisk walk can improve your quality of sleep and actually raise your energy levels during the winter. So don’t let that seasonal affective disorder  get you down. Get moving and take your vitamins. Happy holidays!

Christelle Temple is an WVU honors sophomore. She contributes a weekly column on health, fitness and motivation. Follow her on Instagram @ellesbells2. Contact her at