Browsing Tag


Healthy living, Hormone balance

Work Got You Down?

February 2, 2012

A recent study performed by the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health showed a link between longer work hours and increased risk of depression.
The study followed over 2000 male and female British Civil Service workers between the ages of 35-55 for an average of 5.8 years. All of the participants were healthy, reported no symptoms of depression at the start of the study, and were asked about their work hours.
At the end of the survey period, the workers were screened again and the previously healthy participants who worked 11 or more hours per day at the beginning of the study were almost 2.5 times more likely to have a diagnosis of clinical depression than those who worked more normal hours.
Certainly there are many potential factors at work here. Spending more time at work can create stressors at home. There is less time to exercise, sleep, relax, and enjoy ourselves. We may eat less well. We feel guilty that we have to work such long hours and sacrifice other things in our life, yet feel guilty or have other stressors if we do not work the long hours. This I understand–as I write this, I am missing my daughter’s school conference.
It is important to find balance in all things. Work, play, joy, sadness, hunger, satiety, and yes our hormones too.

Healthy living, Supplements

Vitamin D And Depression

January 11, 2012

This winter has certainly been an odd one. Imagine–over 50 degrees, sunny, and no snow on the ground in Minnesota on January 10th. Two of my patients were going out golfing just to say that they had played in Minnesota in mid-January. Today I watched many people walking outside my office enjoying the weather, and I myself noticed a little lift in my mood being outside for the few minutes that I managed to squeeze in. Despite this, we are still in the time of year when many of our Vitamin D levels are beginning to drop to symptomatic levels. It is likely a bit less noticeable with the nice weather we have been having, but nonetheless, it is still happening. As I have mentioned before Vitamin D is very important for many reasons, not the least of which is mood support.

A study published in the November 2011 edition of Mayo Clinical Proceedings monitored 12,594 men and women between 2006 and 2010. In this study they found a significant association between higher Vitamin D levels and a decreased risk of depressive symptoms, especially among those with a history of depression.

All the more reason to make sure that you know what your Vitamin D level is during the months, when exposed skin is more likely to freeze rather than tan.


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