WATCH: How to fight off the ‘winter blues’

Transcript for How to fight off the ‘winter blues’

To you to our “Gma” health alert. As Lara was just talking about and we just turned back the clock. Are you feeling the winter blues is the question. It could be a medical condition, seasonal affective disorder known as S.A.D. And Dr. Jen Ashton is here with more. First of all, it has a pr problem, this is a real thing. This is not fluff. It is legit and has a lot of mood features that overlap with those of major depression and this is something that health care professionals see a lot of. Lay people experience and the reason it has a pr problem people think it’s just fluff. The symptoms are real and typically affect a change in the mood that occurs early in the witness, you could be sleepier and have less energy and have changes in your appetite and crave carbs. This is real, this is not in your head and that can lead to weight gain. A lot of these signs and symptoms are the same ones we see in someone dealing with major depression. Okay, there are some misconceptions, so we’re going to have our beautiful studio audience help us out. You have your paddles. No pressure. No pressure. I will a ask a question and you answer true or false. Okay. Seasonal affective disorder, called S.A.D., can only impact people in cloudy cities, only if it’s overcast, cloudy cities? Do you think that’s true or false. We got some smart cookies. This is absolutely false because you can experience S.A.D. Or sad anywhere. It tends to be more common the further away from the equator. Just with the change of seasons you can experience this. We don’t know why, there are a lot of theories about what causes S.A.D. It could be changes in your biological clock or circadian rhythm or changes in serotonin or melatonin. You don’t have to suffer in silence. What can you do? Number one, light therapy. You see these a lot, okay, I will caution people they can be effective but don’t just go online and buy one randomly. Consult with a mental health professional first and diet. Food has medicine. Green leafy vegetables and healthy carbs. I don’t want you to reach for white sugar. That will make things worse. Again, incorporate these and don’t suffer. This is real. Please, somewhat said a tanning bed, no. No. No Bueno. Thank you. Just want to make sure. For sure.

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