Skip to Main Content
WarrenShepell logo and header
Individuals Organizations About Us WarrenShepell Research Group Resource Centre Contact Us
ws empowernet
Employer Login
HealthQuest Articles
Balancing Act

Balancing Act Archives
August, 2006: Family Snack Smarts
July, 2006: Cooperative Co-parenting
June, 2006: Street Proofing Teens 101
May, 2006: Harmony is in season: Harmony is in season: Warm Weather Activities To Bring The Family Together
April, 2006: Caregiving: Sensible Steps To Success
March, 2006: Healthy Eating In A Fast Food World
February, 2006: Stress Busters to Stay Lighthearted
January, 2006: Brain Gain in Life's Later Years
December, 2005: Holiday Budget Planning
November, 2005: Combating Childhood Obesity
October, 2005: Eating Away at Colds and Flu
September, 2005: Avoiding the Aches of Osteoarthritis
August, 2005: Growing Older, Eating Wiser
July, 2005: Nutrition Tips for the Healthiest Summer Ever
June, 2005: Long-Term Care Facilities/Nursing Homes - How Do I Choose the Right One?
May, 2005: Nutrition and Your Baby: Introducing solid food to the menu
April, 2005: When Baby Comes Home For The First Time
March, 2005: Stepping into the Role of Stepparent
February, 2005: Pumping Fitness into Your Day
* January, 2005: Remedies for Financial Holiday Hangovers
* December, 2004: Time Out: Making the most of the holidays
* November, 2004: An Ounce of Prevention: Type 2 Diabetes
* October, 2004: Dealing with Peer Pressure
* September, 2004: Long Distance Caregiving
* August, 2004: The ‘Be-tween’ Transition, 2004
* July, 2004: Easing into summer vacation
* June, 2004: A family-friendly balance for working fathers
* May, 2004: Communication Tips to Help Young Minds Grow
* April, 2004: Tips for Making the Tax Season Less Taxing
* March, 2004: The Dieting Merry-Go-Round
* February, 2004: Keeping Your Financial Future in Check
* January, 2004: Here Comes the Flu
* December, 2003: Communicating with your Teen
* November, 2003: Eating for Energy
* October, 2003: Work-life Balance: Making it Work for You
* September, 2003: The Homework Zone
* August, 2003: Health Hints to Ease Your Family in to the Fall Season
* July, 2003: Stay Alert and Stay Safe - Streetproofing your kids
* June, 2003: Summer Activities for Stay-at-Home Kids
* May, 2003: Helping Older Relatives Stay Active
* April, 2003: Spring-cleaning: For the home, the family, and you
* March, 2003: Choosing a Summer Camp
* February, 2003: Baby couch potatoes: Tearing your kids away from the TV
* January, 2003: Resolution Solutions
* December, 2002: Holiday Stress Blasters
* November, 2002: Beating the Winter Blues
* October, 2002: Making the most of family mealtimes
* September, 2002: Generation Relations
* August 2002: Vacation Relaxation
* July 2002: Swimming Safety
* May 2002: Stuck in the Middle. The Sandwich Generation
* April, 2002: Supporting Your Child's Social Success
* March, 2002: After the Spring Break ... Take a Break For Yourself
* February, 2002: Keep those loving connections alive
* January, 2002: Ringing in a Balanced New Year
* December, 2001: Holiday Safety Tips
* November, 2001: It's Flu Season
* October, 2001: Halloween Safety Tips
* September, 2001: Back to school

The Balancing Act. Work/Life Tips Printer Friendly Version

Beating the Winter Blues

As the days grow shorter and the temperature colder, you and your family may be tempted to make like squirrels and hibernate in your cozy, centrally-heated home. But, if you’re like the estimated 15-20 per cent of people who experience the weight gain, carbohydrate cravings and lethargy of the ‘winter blues,’ resist the urge to burrow under the covers. Instead:

Brave the outdoors. Bundle up and go for a walk outside, especially on sunny days. Winter blues are caused by the body’s response to reduced light exposure, so every ray helps lift your spirits. Take a stroll during your lunch hour, walk your kids to school, or go to the corner store on foot—just get out there!

Limit starchy, fatty and sweet foods. Those “comfort foods” that are supposed to help you feel ‘safe and warm’—cookies, mashed potatoes, etc.—could actually be dragging your mood down and pushing your weight up. Reach for fresh fruit and vegetables instead of those French fries. It’ll help you feel lighter in more ways than one.

Get involved. Sign yourself up for a new class or activity. Not only will it get you out of the house, it’ll encourage you to discover new interests and avoid isolation.

Get help. If your symptoms are greatly limiting your ability to function at home and at work then you may be suffering from a seasonal form of clinical depression known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). SAD’s symptoms are more severe than “winter blues” and may also include: irritability, feelings of ‘emptiness’ or profound sadness, and major changes in eating and sleeping routines. If you think you might be experiencing SAD, consult your physician or contact your EAP for support.

Get Moving! Whether you jump on a stationary bike, unwind with yoga or dance the night away, physical activity fights off weight gain, boosts energy and releases mood-enhancing endorphins. Kill three birds with one stone: increase your sun exposure, get active and spend more time with the kids by embracing outdoor winter activities. Lace up your old skates, strap on some skis, or dust off that toboggan and spend a fun-filled family day in the park.

Create winter rituals. Find new ways to celebrate the frosty season: organize winter activities that friends and family can enjoy together. Arrange a sleigh ride, neighbourhood winter festival, skating party etc. All are great ways to get everyone out, socializing and re-energized during winter’s darkest months.

Need more information on parenting? Your Employee Assistance Program (EAP) can help with a child to elder care resource and referral service that is geared toward enhancing the quality of family life. Call your Employee Assistance Program (EAP) to see if you are eligible for the child to elder care resource and referral service at 1 866.468.9461 or 1.800.387.4765.

This newsletter is meant for informational purposes only and may not necessarily represent the views of individual organizations.

Printer Friendly Version

© 2005 WarrenShepell