Here are some ideas to help put a “Spring” into your step

Here are some ideas to help put a “Spring” into your step



Spring is in the air! YAY! Longer days, flowering trees, maybe even some sunshine. But here in the Pacific Northwest, Spring can also bring allergies, molds, and colds that come with the dramatic shifts of temperatures. And because of our gray skies and rain, many people find that the Spring can bring some seasonal depression. So how do we get a Spring into our step?


Here are some ideas!

Get outside. Rain or shine. There is a lot of research that time spent in Nature can help with moods and our cognition. Turn off the screen, put on your rain boots and a warm sweater and step into a local park or even a neighborhood stroll. 20-30 minutes per day can boost your dopamine and serotonin and calm the mind. The forest produces pheromones that ease tension and reduces stress.

If you suffer from allergies, freeze dried nettles taken daily along with some vitamin C can help reduce allergic symptoms and nettles are full of minerals and iron and bolster your immune system. Starting early in the season is ideal. There are also some good homeopathic remedies for allergic symptoms: Euphrasia is good for itchy, watery eyes; allium cepa helps if you have an irritated nose. There are some combination remedies that work for some people for allergies as well, which you can find at your local health food store.

Is the rain getting you down? Besides a walk outside, a bright light inside can improve mood and focus by increasing your natural serotonin production and bolstering your cortisol.Buy a high LUX light for seasonal depression, set it on your kitchen table or somewhere where you can be in front of it for 20-30 minutes daily.You want it to shine in your face. Sitting in front of a bright light (or the sun if its there) can help improve energy and mood for most.

As for mold, if you live in a moldy home, you may want to consider moving out. Indoor mold can be very toxic, especially black mold. Certain people are more susceptible to mold toxicity than others but some of the mold species produce mycotoxins which can cause systemic inflammatory conditions including memory loss and chronic fatigue.

Finally, Spring is a great time to do a cleanse. In Chinese medicine, Springtime is liver time! Many of the young green plants that grow in the Spring are great for the liver – dandelion greens, spring greens, radicchio, radishes, artichokes. Take a 2-week break from sugar, coffee, alcohol, wheat and dairy and eat a large plate of greens at least once per day.

Pretty soon, Spring will move into longer days and sunshine for real. Maybe even heat. So for now, I’ll see you in the park. Don’t forget your mud shoes and your umbrella!


Dr. Jennifer Means welcomes you for Primary Care for the whole family: Nutrition, IV Therapy, Naturopathy, and Acupuncture. Contact us at 503-641-6400.