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Feeling Down? Lift Your Mood Naturally

By Sandy Schroeder

It is fairly easy to feel down in today's world. Most of us have a lot going on, and often there are complications.  If you can relate, you may be looking for some natural ways to lift your spirits.

If you or someone in your family is feeling depressed, you may also need to see your doctor for a recommendation for a therapist.

Dr. Darshan Mehta, Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital, suggests ways to rally from sadness.

Exercise every option - One of the best ways to give sadness the boot is to start moving and keep moving. Dr. Mehta says, "Exercise helps reduce anxiety, improve sleep and boost energy."  Create a natural lightheartedness with walks to the park, work in your garden, or shooting hoops with your kids. Aerobics may be especially good at fighting depression.  

Eat healthy and watch the sugar - The brain needs a steady flow of glucose. Too much sugar can create emotional highs and lows. Dr. Mehta says when you are down you may crave sugar. Stock up on nuts and fresh fruit to break the dependency and keep your moods level. Watch out for sugar in sodas, processed food, and sweets.

Reach out to those around you - Stay connected with cards, notes, texts, emails and calls and make a point of having sit-down dinners with your family. All of our connections can work to avoid isolation and feelings of hopelessness. Look around in your neighborhood to spot older people who may be cooped up and lonely. Also look for ways to volunteer to help in your community or sign on for your favorite team sport if it's available.

Be thankful and say so - Take a minute at the end of  the day to list all of the good things that you have in your life. Consider starting a journal to note what you are thankful for and what inspires you. Researchers say regular entries can help us reflect on all of the good things that we have. One couple that I know keeps a whiteboard in their bathroom and each night they write things that they are thankful for with their mates. Show your kids how much you value them with little surprises or special outings.  

Wherever you are with sadness and depressed feelings, don't give up. Exercise more, eat healthy, and stay connected with those around you. If depression still persists, contact your doctor to get help to work through the issues.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic Lakewood, Calif. 

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