Are you one of those people having a hard time waking up and getting out of bed? Well, you can blame the changing seasons according to assistant professor Eylem Ezgi Fadıloğlu from Yaşar University. As we put winter behind us and welcome spring, the weather and our moods seem to shift quicker.
However, if you feel tired in the morning, you can regain your energy by changing your sleep pattern, diet and activity level.
Stressing that good nutrition is key to starting your morning right, especially in the winter and during seasonal transitions, Fadıloğlu offered some advice for those having trouble waking up, feeling tired throughout the day, suffering from continuous backaches and for those craving sweets that can lead to thickener waists and weight problems.
Referring to the importance of sleep, Fadıloğlu said sleeping less than six hours a day and divided, poor quality, insufficient or excessive sleep causes your immune system to weaken, your metabolism to slow, and your mental and physical performance to fall. She added that with quality sleep, it is possible to start the day healthy, vibrant and energetic.
"Feelings of stress and fatigue decrease, while the ability to learn increases," she added.
Darkness for quality sleep
Fadıloğlu said people who go to bed late at night often over eat due to lack of sleep which leads to unwanted weight gain. Informing that drinking strong coffee and tea can also cause insomnia, Fadıloğlu said melatonin is needed for quality sleep, which is triggered by darkness. She said devices such as telephones, computers, televisions, etc., transmit light and radiation that interfere with this process.
"The highest level of melatonin is released at 2 a.m. when the body goes into deep sleep. Even if you do not change your bedtime, you can relax your muscles by taking a warm shower before going to bed, and you can have regular, balanced sleep by not eating after 8 p.m. to start the body's sleep process," she said.
Right nutrients at breakfast
Fadıloğlu stressed that consuming carbohydrates and saturated fats, such as honey, jam and pastries, in the morning also lead to drops in blood sugar levels and fatigue after a couple of hours.
According to Fadıloğlu, a balanced and healthy breakfast menu consisting of eggs, cheese, curd, milk, butter, avocados, walnuts and black cumin is recommended, while lunch and dinner should be limited to vegetable and protein-based dishes.
Likewise, carbohydrates should be limited. Noting that cabbage and cauliflower, which contain vitamin K and calcium and protect from breast, prostate and intestinal cancer with indol-3 carbinol, red beets with their antioxidants and spinach containing energy-providing coenzyme Q10 are a great additions to any meal, Fadıloğlu said probiotic foods, such as walnuts, almonds, nuts, dark chocolate, leeks, asparagus, green lentils and onions as well as sheep's head and foot soup containing collagen are great choices.
Dark red or purple berries such as cranberries and blueberries, carotene-containing carrots, oranges, peppers and dark green-leaved vegetables as well as flavonoid-containing onions, parsley and cress should also be part of the menu. She added that omega-3 intake is also important and can be boosted by consuming fish at least twice a week.
Fadıloğlu underlined that the most important factor to staying healthy is to avoid stress and stressful situations.
"You can try to look at things optimistically and deal with stress by getting together with your friends or simply finding hobbies," Fadıloğlu said.
She added that regular exercise improves energy levels, and that contrary to general beliefs, will make you feel more refreshed after.
"It strengthens your memory due to increased oxygen in your brain. Exercise relieves the stress of business life, reduces anxiety and obsessions, improves mental health and performance by keeping you fit," she continued. "Endorphins, which helps you fight depression and tension, are secreted during exercise. For a healthy and fit life, at least 30 minutes of exercise three days a week is a must."
Noting that there may be various reasons for still constantly feeling tired even after changing your habits, Fadıloğlu said these symptoms may indicate the possibility of anemia, magnesium deficiency, vitamin D deficiency, thyroid problems, insulin resistance as well as diabetes or heart disease.
"For this reason, you should see a doctor, get a blood test and have a checkup," she added.