I work in an office in the middle of a large building, and my room has no windows, and with it being winter I'm getting no sunlight outside of work - I'm worried that this is making me depressed. Can you recommend any foods that would help offset this?
Hi connelly63. What we eat can have a big impact on our moods, so a few tweaks to the food you eat at work (and at home) may help to lift your spirits. Try to ensure that you eat enough protein, which is essential for the production of endorphins, our body’s ‘happy hormones’. Some Greek yoghurt with breakfast, an egg sandwich or tuna salad for lunch, and a bean casserole or lovely beef stew are all tasty ideas. Add in some slow-release carbohydrates for consistent energy (think about wholegrain bread, roasted root vegetables and grains). Try not to give in to sweet cravings, as they make us feel great one minute, swiftly followed by a crash as our body deals with the excess sugar.
Don’t overlook drinks, as a mug of your favourite herbal tea or a decent cup of fresh coffee will raise your mood far more than a lousy cup from the work machine. You could also take in a flask of homemade soup, or hot chocolate made with cow’s milk or a non-dairy alternative, with a few squares of good-quality dark chocolate melted into it.
Finally, our body gets most of its vitamin D from sunshine. If your office doesn’t have a window, I suggest you take a vitamin D supplement (it’s one of the few supplements I recommend) and increase your intake of vitamin D-rich foods, such as oily fish, dairy produce and eggs. You might want to ask if your employer could invest in a light-therapy lamp.