Elisabeth om att hantera långa mörka vinterdagar

Elisabeth on dealing with long dark winter days

Elisabeth Strifeldt, brand manager and co-founder of Aarja Health, gives below tips on how to handle winter's dark hours in the best possible way. She herself has Sami roots and lives in the absolute northernmost parts of Norway, where daylight is not seen during certain parts of the year. Thank you Elisabeth for sharing, we say at Aarja Magasin!

Although I grew up in Finnmark, where the sun does not appear for two months a year, the time of darkness is not easier for me. When I was younger and didn't have the knowledge I have now, it felt like you were just walking around like a zombie most of the time. The sleeping routines were just a mess as you couldn't sleep until late at night and then barely get up in the morning. In the afternoon, I could take long afternoon naps, which disturbed the night's sleep even more. Little energy and constantly tired is how I remember it.

Luckily, dark time is easier now that I follow my dark time routines to the letter. When we don't get daylight or sun, not as much melatonin is produced – the hormone that makes us fall asleep. Therefore, you are awake longer and your sleep rhythm is disrupted.

In a study with people suffering from sleep problems, researchers saw a 160% increase in melatonin levels at night after being exposed to just half an hour of bright light from a daylight lamp daily.


Therefore number one - I always make sure to be outside in daylight, or what little daylight there is during the day. If that doesn't work, I've invested in a daylight lamp that I use for half an hour every day. It actually makes me feel tired at normal times and have no problem falling asleep. I feel a big difference when I don't use it, or don't have time to go out in the morning.


At first I didn't think I could jog outside in the winter, or it was something I wasn't looking forward to, until I tried it. Winter has now become my favorite time of year to jog! This is because the fresh cold air is extra invigorating and clean, and you feel so fresh for a long time afterwards. In addition, exercise leads to better sleep. Now I prefer to eat lunch while working, and use my lunch to go for a short run while it's still daylight. On the weekend, when you have a little more time, ski trips are our favorite winter activity! Fun for both young and old.


It is nothing new that vitamin D levels drop in the winter due to too little sun on the body. Too little vitamin D in the body can make you lose energy and feel tired and depressed! Usually, 10 minutes of sun on the body is enough for us to get our daily dose of vitamin D. But when we don't have that option, we should take extra supplements of the sun vitamin. That's why I always make sure to take our chewable Vitamin D3 with delicious cranberry flavor - my favorite!

In addition, from time to time I can take 12 minutes in the solarium, so that you get sun all over your body and it can form its own vitamin D. Although I know that tanning beds can be harmful in large amounts, I choose to believe that a little sun does more good than harm, if you keep it to a minimum.


I simply don't know what I would do without our OptiMSM. I'm convinced that it's the one that gives me that little extra pep, so that I don't lose my energy during the afternoon and can keep up with my four-year-old son. So many people give feedback that they now don't need to take their usual afternoon nap and feel they have more energy after starting regularly with our OptiMSM. In addition, it keeps my otherwise restless stomach in check and I can tolerate all kinds of food again! Simply a fantastic multi-product! Also good for hair, skin and nails.


Surely there are more people who feel that they get a bigger sweet tooth when it's dark? The simple explanation is that when the atmospheric temperature drops, our body tries to increase its own temperature to survive the cold. In this process, all our nutrients are used, especially the most energizing ones; fats and carbohydrates.

Therefore, our bodies want sweets and fried, preferably spicy food, to keep us warm. Such foods help maintain the fatty tissue just under the skin, which acts as insulation against the cold. I try as often as I can to make fruit smoothies and carrot juice in the morning. This gives me plenty of healthy carbs and nutrition to help curb my sweet tooth throughout the day and evening. In addition, I make sure to get a lot of protein at all meals. This stabilizes the blood sugar and can curb the sweet tooth.


About every three months I use our vitamin meter that we have in our store. There I can monitor my vitamin, mineral, omega-3 and collagen levels among other things, which comes in handy if you want to make the most of the dark times.

Hugs from Elisabeth

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