R.he felt melancholy, autumn has many benefits and is the perfect time for both body and mind. It is in these months that in fact both begin to relax, to “recharge the batteries” after the summer euphoria; if it is true, and it is scientifically proven, that in this period one can be subject toautumn bluesthe typical autumn sadness, however, it is equally true that from 23 September, this year’s autumn equinox date, the body begins to recharge its batteries.
Autumn and benefits: how body and mind react to change
“The first big change of the season is hormonal. In fact, serotonin is lowered bringing with it also a certain sadness. In addition to the consequences on mood, the body is also affected, as the physiological biorhythm slows down, relaxing after the summer “explains the dr. Nicola Castaldini, specialist in internal medicine at San Pier Damiano Hospital in Faenza.
A change that also has an impact on the mind: «We talk about Seasonal Affective Disorder, the so-called Sad, or a seasonal mood disorderthat’autumn blues evident above all in the very different season changes ».
At the base of this melancholy, as highlighted by a study ofUniversity of Copenhagenthe sert or the neurotransmitter of serotonin. «The study revealed that with the arrival of autumn and therefore of darkness, there is a increase in sert which causes greater sadness. This works by capturing serotonin and closing it inside a nerve cell, deactivating it and not allowing it to reach the synapse where it would bring the benefits of its action. The links between sert and mood had already emerged but thanks to this study there is confirmation that the change of season has real effects on the moodThe doctor explains Maria Zaccagnino, EMDR psychologist and psychotherapist.
Mood effects already evident in our country, with differences between north and south to the detriment of the former where people are more prone to the disorder.
Far from commonplace, autumn is a relaxing season
However, it is not all bad. Among the benefits of autumn, there is the slowing down of the body “Just like animals, men also have a tendency to go into hibernation, which in our case translates into a slowing of rhythms. It’s not a casuality: after the summer, the body needs rest and the low temperatures not only allow it but also encourage you to stay more at hometo spend time in peace “explains Dr. Castaldini who continues” Gods also occur food changes. First of all we drink more: the organism in its entirety needs to fill up the consuming water reserves during the summer season. Furthermore, there is also a tendency to eat more and more caloric foods: it is a historical reason, in the past there was a greater shortage of food and therefore autumn was the ideal time to prepare for winter ».
Also not to be underestimated is the fact that you can spend more hours in the open air: “Even if the sunny days are fewer and the hours of darkness are greater, it is essential to always stay in the light and in the open air because the production of vitamin D and serotonin not depending only on the sun itself but on life in the open. For this it is useful to continue on carry out physical activity, perhaps more moderate according to the needs of the organism. Not to mention that the more time you spend outdoors, the stronger your immune system is ”explains the expert from Faenza.
Restore order and find balance between the benefits of autumn
Autumn is therefore almost a season of rebirth for the body «Thanks to the more pleasant temperatures, after the summer heat, and after a prolonged exposure to sunlight, the season it also brings back a new inner order through the acquisition of more regular habits between sleep, nutrition and daily activities, marked by calm rhythms of nature which is as if it were sending the message of “letting go” »explains Dr. Michela Francia, psychotherapist, head of the Hospital Psychology Service of the City of Lecce Hospital.
This attitude also helps a lot to get out of sad: «Resume regular sleep schedules, slow down activities in the second part of the day, take a seasonal diet very rich in vitamins but also a more realistic attitude by doing what is within your meansputting aside the “everything and immediately” that can produce further stress and psychophysical fatigue, helps to avoid melancholy ».
Don’t underestimate the well-being of doing what you really like “The key lies in taking care of themselves and listening to themselves. Doing what you like best, relax and seek pleasant sensations. Furthermore also physical activity appears to bring many benefits to the mood“Explains Dr. Zaccagnino, echoed by the psychotherapist France” It is also necessary carry on some enjoyable and rewarding activities that started in the summer to be included in our daily life, as well as organizing the days in an orderly but flexible way. Take advantage of the weekend to expose yourself more to sunlight, between walks and physical activity in the open air ».
Nutrition, what is good for body and mind in autumn
Always important, feeding in the fall enjoys greater interest: «Naturally richer in vitamins, seasonal food also has a large supply of water. Pumpkins, cauliflowers, cabbage and artichokes are essential, but the important thing is to self-regulate. In fact, although the body tends to take more, compared to past eras, today we move less, so it is no longer necessary to “stock up” »explains Dr. Castaldini.
It is therefore essential to choose food that helps body but also mood: “The bananas rich in mineral salts, B vitamins and potassium they give energy, relieve stress and they are also friends of the stomach, indicated for those suffering from gastritis and gastroesophageal reflux. Even the nuts are important, they contain fat-soluble vitamins such as those of groups A and E, magnesium and omega3 allies of the heart, brain and sight, therefore neuroproteins that they stimulate cognitive functions and reduce tension and stressThe doctor explains Manuela Mapelli, nutritionist which continues «le lentils and all legumes rich in folic acid, magnesium and amino acid tyrosine. The eggwith omega 3 and vitamins A, B and D, stimulate positive thinking while berries fight stress because they release hormones ».
Also not to be underestimated spinach and sweet potato, involved in the release of serotonin, and dark chocolate «It releases endorphins and serotonin and is a great mid-morning and mid-afternoon break, or before sports. A small piece before bed induces a good sleep. As long as it is at least 85% dark, ”concludes the nutritionist.
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