This past weekend, we turned our clocks back one hour. You probably welcomed the extra hour of sleep on Saturday night, but we are now stuck in days that turn dark long before we're ready for the night.
The general idea behind daylight saving time is to make more sunshine available during the summer evenings: Springing the clocks forward an hour in March provides an extra hour of early-evening daylight, while falling back an hour in November (returning to Standard Time) adds that hour of light back to the mornings. Daylight saving time is currently practiced in approximately 70 countries around the world (and every American state except Hawaii and most of Arizona). Extended hours of daylight are said to reduce crime and car accidents, conserve energy, and financially boost daytime industries like golf and barbecue.
But this abrupt change in time can have a strange impact on the natural rhythm of our bodies. Some people have difficulties transitioning back to fewer hours of daylight, and as a result, they suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder. This very real condition can instill feelings of anxiety, irritability, and depression, and can result in an actual drop in levels of feel-good neurotransmitters, such as serotonin. Making some dietary adjustments can help transition your body into a new seasonal schedule. Eating foods that are high in mood-boosting nutrients like magnesium, B vitamins, vitamin D, and omega-3 fatty acids can help you navigate the dark days of winter. You can beat the post-daylight-saving-time blues with these eight mood-boosting foods.