The Psychology Behind Sunshine Motivation is D-lightful!
Written by Susan Thorn
Summer is about to commence! If you are feeling less than D-lightful in the motivation department lately, perhaps all you really need is a little ray of sunshine! Most of us can sense the positive influence of sunshine in our bodies by the immediate motivational mood boost we get when we take a hike in the gorgeous outdoors. What wouldn’t I give to save up that healthful little dose of motivation when it hits! If you are struggling to find your dose of motivation lately, read on, maybe all you need is a little drizzle of sunshine.
There is new research out that has found a correlation between low levels of vitamin D and depression. Natural sunshine is a precursor to vitamin D. Normally, our bodies take in vitamin D in the form of sun-synthesis through the skin. In today’s modern times, many of us spend countless hours inside the gym, at work in front of computes, in our cars, and in shopping malls, and our actual exposure to the sun can be self-limiting. This lifestyle may be the principle cause of many ailments, including depression. Finding the time to incorporate a few minutes of sunshine into your everyday routine will guarantee you a safe way to add motivation, inspiration, and a ray of sunshine to your energy.
Low levels of vitamin D due to lack of sunlight can really zap energy levels. Vitamin D is a vital element to your health and is as necessary as food, water, and sleep. Researchers have recently recognized that sufficient levels of vitamin D along with a balanced diet and a routine commitment to exercise as one of the major contributors to good health, mood, and motivation. While I am not advocating excessive amounts of basking in the sun unprotected, it is important to know that any glass window or sunscreen with a SPF of more than 15 will block the benefits of the sun.
A spot of sunshine may be just the thing to spark a gal’s libido too! Testosterone is just as important to us girls as it is to the guys. An Austrian study done in 2010 posted in BBC News found that healthy testosterone levels are boosted by vitamin D. The skin naturally makes the majority of this essential nutrient when we are exposed to the warmth of the sun. Blood levels of vitamin D and testosterone tend to dip in the winter months and peak in the summer when days are longer and we are more active out of doors. Ample testosterone also performs essential functions for us women, such as maintaining a sense of well-being, muscle strength, and good bone density.
So how do you get the vitamin D to perform well at home, at work, at the gym, and in love? One method of increasing your vitamin D is through scheduled time pursuing healthy outdoor activities. If you are ready to rediscover a renewed burst of motivation, you will want to add time away from the daily grind to do a little sun worshipping. Aim for 15 minutes everyday of safe sun early in the morning or late in the day for your health and motivation! The UVB rays from the sun are beaming with protective vitamin D, an important nutrient for your bones, your heart, your immune system and your happiness. Take time out of your day everyday to get outside and enjoy the D-Lightful healing benefits that the sun has to offer.
The second item on the “to do” list includes a diet rich in whole foods that are high in nutrient dense sources. The RDA for women 19-70 years old is 600IU daily. It has been estimated that the average woman is getting only 144IU to 276IU of vitamin D per day. Fatty fish like salmon, at 447IU, are a great source, as well as tuna and swordfish. The list below contains some rich sources with the IU per serving
- Orange juice 137
- Sword fish 566
- Soy milk, original and vanilla light 241
- Mushrooms, white, raw 168
- Cheese, Swiss 6
- Milk, nonfat, reduced fat, and whole vitamin D fortified 115-124
- Yogurt 80
- Egg (1) with yolk 41
- Ready to eat fortified cereal (Kellogg’s All Bran with Extra Fiber) 291
While our initial desire to exercise faithfully, eat clean, and spend more time pursuing a healthy lifestyle may originate with an inspiration, our motivation to maintain the active lifestyle may need more. Our ability to be dedicated and persevere to our goals is largely related to healthy nutrition and can be greatly influenced with the addition of a healthy dose of daily sun. Soaking in the warmth of the sun is one of life’s great pleasures we share with all living creatures — just watch a cat dozing on the carpet in the warmth of the sun coming through a window. Another important benefit of some time in the sun is the prize of a sunny disposition, and you know what they say, “A sunny disposition makes for a lifetime of good health!” Now get out there and soak it up!