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Beating Blue Monday

Have a nice day. No, we sincerely mean that! We hope your day today is great, considering that a British study has determined that the 17th of January is “the most depressing day of the year”. As Rosalyn Solomon reports in today’s edition of 24 Hours (Sun Media’s national mini-newspaper), there are a variety of reasons why today is the worst day of the year.

Apparently, the study found that the combination of the frigid winter weather, “holiday debt, monthly salary and the fizzle of New Year’s resolutions” make January 17th the quintessential day of gloom of most people. Also known as “Blue Monday”, today is a day when people may need some extra help beating the blues.

As Solomon reveals, The Florida Department of Citrus (of all people) polled more than 1,000 Canadians before and after the holidays about such things as their emotional and physical health, work/life balance, diet and finances. Lydia Knorr is a registered dietician with the FDOC.

Said Knorr: “It’s definitely a combination of things, it’s the reality of some of our spending before Christmas, it’s the reality of our indulgences over the holiday season, it’s the reality that ‘OK, Christmas is over now what do I have to look forward to? I’ve got three more long months of winter.’”

Predictably, the FDOC surveys found that there was a six per cent increase in those who were dissatisfied with their emotional health when they were interviewed after the holidays as compared to before. Knorr adds, however, that all hope is not lost. There are a number of things that people can do to overcome the stress of Blue Monday.

Activities as simple as getting more sleep, exercising as well as performing random acts of kindness are just a few of Knorr’s suggestions. The right diet, she continues, is the key to improving your overall physical health. Adding fresh fruit to your diet will help to provide you with more energy, for example.

In addition, don’t skip breakfast. They don’t call it “the most important meal of the day” for nothing! Says Knorr: “There are practical grab and go options that are really quick and nutritious. There is various research to prove that people who eat breakfast everyday do a lot better.”

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