Up here in the Northwest, particularly in the winter months, sun is hard to come by. It rains for days, it gets cold and the dark hours of the day get longer and longer and it’s preferable to stay cooped up in the house. Some might enjoy the rain, but others flourish in the sun. Local resident Deanna Bixby hates the winter because of the fact that she can’t go out and enjoy things and is depressed because the lack of sunlight, and she’s not the only one. These dark days mean less sunlight, and less sunlight means the potential for getting necessary and vital amounts of vitamin D plummets—just like a lot of people’s moods and energy levels around this time.
Images and Editing by Daniel Ostapenko
Writing by Jeremy Hess
This general mood-plummet can in part be explained by Seasonal Affective Disorder, also appropriately known as SAD, festers around this chilly time of year. Energy levels go through the floor, and gloomy symptoms of depression come about. Teachers see it all the time, and it sure doesn’t help around finals time when you’re trying to finish a test and just want to curl up and sleep under a fog of sunshine-less gloom. The only cure: lots and lots of vitamin D-filled sunshine.
As well as being a good cure for the Winter Blues, vitamin D has a host of other health benefits. It can help with healthy weight loss, assists in the natural absorption of calcium in bones, reduces the risk of colon cancer, and helps maintain a healthy immune system. Here in Vancouver we get deprived of this beautiful vitamin for months and months out of the year, so any chance you get, make sure that when the sun is out, go out there and soak up some good old vitamin D.