If you feel better in the summer, you’re no alone. Dr. Betul Hatipoglu, who works in the department of endocrinology, diabetes, and metabolism at the Cleveland Clinic explains, “You are genetically hardwired to experience positive chemical changes in your brain as the season begins.”
We can thank longer days and warm weather for some of these changes. Getting more exposure to natural light helps boost mood and productivity and even helps us sleep better at night. Plus, all that sunshine allows our skin to make ideal levels of vitamin D, which gives us wellness benefits like more stamina, stronger bones and a lower risk of disease.
Dr. Frank Lipman says during the summer, we “feel an overall sense of health and happiness.” Most of these benefits happen automatically, but to maximize their effects, try these:
- Make the sunshine work for you - You’re getting more vitamin D from the sun, but you need enough magnesium to help your system use it efficiently, according to new research. Adding magnesium-rich foods like leafy greens, seeds, nuts, and grains can help.
- Step up your weekdays - We’re more active during the summer, but mostly on weekends, so add more exercise to weekdays to feel more focused and less stressed. Dr. Lipman suggests just two or three 10-minute periods of physical activity each workday.
- Schedule your superfoods - Hit up the farmer’s market for fresh fruits and veggies, especially the most nutritious options like berries, stone fruits, tomatoes, arugula, corn, and chard.