With the days getting shorter, we’re all being exposed to less natural light, which plays a vital role in our overall health and well-being. As the seasons change and the daylight hours dwindle, it’s important to understand the impact this can have on our mental wellness. In this blog post, we’ll explore the importance of light exposure, ways to maximize it, and tools that can help – all with the goal of providing you info that could help you optimize your mood and overall wellness.

Health benefits of getting enough light exposure

Exposure to natural light can have a profound impact on your health. Sunlight is a natural source of vitamin D, which plays a crucial role in bone health, immune function, and even mental health.

Getting enough sunlight can boost your mood, improve your sleep quality, and enhance your overall well-being. Moreover, studies have shown that natural light exposure can alleviate symptoms of depression and anxiety, providing a natural way to support your mental wellness.

What are the effects of inadequate light exposure?

When we’re exposed to less natural light, especially during the winter months, we may experience a range of negative effects on our mental and physical health. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a common condition that occurs in individuals who experience depressive symptoms during specific times of the year, typically in the winter.

Reduced light exposure can disrupt our circadian rhythm, leading to fatigue, low energy levels, and decreased motivation. It’s important to be aware of these effects and take steps to counteract them.

How to maximize natural light exposure

While we may not have control over the shortening daylight hours, there are several ways we can maximize our natural light exposure. Start by opening your curtains or blinds to let in as much natural light as possible.

Going for a 20-minute walk first thing in the morning (or on your lunch break) can also make a big difference. And, if you work from home or spend a lot of time indoors, consider rearranging your workspace to be near a window. These small changes can really help maximize your light exposure in the darker months. 

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What is a ‘happy light’ and how can it help? 

A ‘happy light’ – also known as a light therapy box or SAD lamp – is a device that mimics natural sunlight. These lights emit bright, white light that is designed to simulate the benefits of sunlight.

The benefits of using one can include improved mood, increased energy levels, and reduced symptoms of seasonal affective disorder. By incorporating a happy light into your daily routine, you can help compensate for the lack of natural light during the shorter days and reap the benefits of light therapy.

Should I bathe in a happy light when I exercise?!

Exercise and light exposure can be a power-packed combination for boosting mental wellness. When you exercise, your body releases endorphins – also known as  “feel-good” hormones – which can leave you feeling happier and more energized.

Combining exercise with exposure to a happy light can amplify these positive effects on your mood. So why not bring your happy light into your workout space and transform your exercise routine into a holistic experience that benefits both your physical and mental wellness?

Closing comments

We hope this article helped shed some light on this topic (pun intended 😉 and gave you some ideas for keeping your mood and energy levels up over the coming winter months.

Another thing that can really help is regular workouts – and if you need help in that regard, we’ve got you covered. Reach out today to schedule your complimentary first workout and fitness consultation.