by Joan Gitzel, C.H.N.C.
Has the COVID pandemic left you feeling down? If it has, you’re in good company. Here are some things you can do to help yourself feel better.
Did you know that 90% of your serotonin, the hormone that makes you feel happy, is produced in your gut by beneficial bacteria, and not in your brain? So, if you’re feeling anxious or depressed, take a good look at what you are putting into your mouth. A lack of serotonin may be the result of eating too many “food-like” substances and not enough “real food”! Skip that bag of chips and reach for a piece of fruit. Eat food that doesn’t have a label (more fruits and vegetables) because that is what those good gut bugs need to thrive. It’s possible that yours are starving if your diet consists of mostly processed food. Eat organic as much as possible too, because the chemicals sprayed on non-organic produce and the growth hormones fed to the animals we consume, are harmful to your microbiome.
So that’s the first thing to do. Here are some others:
- Get active!
- Limit time on social media and listening to the news.
- Think positive thoughts.
- Spend time with people you love – face to face. Limit screen time.
- Get a good night’s sleep. Turn off the screens an hour before bed and go for a walk.
- Think of five things that you’re grateful for before you even get out of bed in the morning!
- Smile and laugh, even when you don’t feel like it. Laughter really is the best medicine! Your brain doesn’t know you are faking it, and you will soon feel better. Watch videos on YouTube of laughing babies!