Category Archives: Health

It’s a real disorder: Let’s talk about Winter depression

Winter depression, Seasonal affective disorder (SAD). As we say in Norwegian, “Dear child has many names”. Though this isn’t exactly a dear condition.

It’s real though. It tends to hit some of us who are unlucky enough to live somewhere where there’s proper winter. I say unlucky, because if you’re hard hit by this, winter is a bit of a living hell.

Winter is ok if you’re in the mountains, skiing and it’s sunny. However, that’s not what winter looks like in everyday life. Those kinds of winter moments are usually saved for the holidays and they actually happen closer to spring. Oh, the irony.

Not everybody has SAD. I however, am so unfortunate as to be hit quite hard most years. I was under the illusion that I had escaped it this year. We’re half way through February, so spring is technically close. However, after not having seen the sun for about two weeks, I had to admit defeat.

Winter depression is pretty much like any other depression. But contrary to say, clinical depression, winter depression can be cured by just going to somewhere where there’s a lot of sunshine and light. I miss Nigeria!

Like with other kinds of depression though, your everyday life is affected. I find that the only way I am able to function in the darkest of winter days, is to treat my life as a long to do list. I don’t enjoy doing anything when I am this down. Not even the things I normally enjoy doing. So I write out schedules to follow to make sure that I go through the motions.
But though this works most days, I have days where I am unable to do much more than stay in bed. Everything from work to social life is affected by this. And the fact that I am too depressed to do anything gets me down even more. Vicious circle.

What adds to my winter depression, is the ice and snow on the ground, because it makes it near impossible for me to move around outside independently. The snow cover up landmarks I feel for and the soundscape is altered. As for the ice, I have the same issues as everyone else, except I don’t have the luxury of seeing where there’s less ice, so I can’t always avoid the icy stretches. I can just about walk routes that I know well in the winter. I need to go grocery shopping for example. But on bad days, the mental energy isn’t there. So the winter, as well as taking my beloved sunshine and light, also isolates me somewhat.

So if somebody mentions Seasonal Affective Disorder, or Winter Depression, take it seriously. For those of us who have it, it’s very real. We’re not trying to complain or be negative. It’s called a disorder for a reason. Many people don’t take this seriously, so I want to stress the importance of this.

Needless to say, I have been counting down to spring for a while and will keep doing so. I think I need to just stay in Africa or somewhere else sunny for all of next winter to avoid the depression. Isn’t it funny how easy, yet complicated it is to cure it? And no, the lamps don’t work for me. It has to be biological light.

Change 9: Final days plus my verdict

I’m done with C9 and I’ll tell you how the last days went as well as my verdict on the program.

Just to recap, if you haven’t read my other posts, This is a nine days program where you eat nothing except a protein shake and certain fruits and vegetables for the first two days. You also take suppliments and drink Aloe vera. From days 3 to 8, you can have two shakes and a 600 calories meal. On day 9, you substitute Your lunch shake for a 300 calories lunch. The suppliments you take in the Norwegian Version of the program are fibre and lean which is a suppliment that contains among other Things, figue extract and chromium which curbs hunger and kills sweet cravings. In most other countries, you also get Forever Therm which is supposed to help you burn fat quicker. But since the Norwegian government is very strict on suppliments, Therm isn’t allowed to be sold here. You also have to drink a lot of water on C9. If you don’t, you’ll get headaches. I speak from experience!

 

As far as diets go, I think it’s a good and safe one. It’s only nine days, so relatively short. And you get all the nutrients you need. The shakes which come in either chocolate or Vanilla taste remarkably good for proeting shakes and are filling. I didn’t have any sweet, or crisps cravings at all. And I don’t have them now either.

 

My main issue with the program was being on only 1000 calories for so many days. I was perhaps working out a little bit more than what the program was recommending, but its winter here and not much to do. So if you can’t sit at home and over eat, then it’s working out instead. LOL. So this may not be a problem for you if you’re sensible and don’t work out too hard.

I actually realized though that I could have been eating a 300 calories lunch on the last day as well as my dinner. But only when I had a Skype meeting with my sponsor that evening. The PDF had been converted such that I didn’t pick it up. Not the most screen reader friendly pdf, in other words. You should have seen how quickly upon hearing that news I killed a protein bar.

But having said that, I do really recommend C9. It’s a good program to use after festive seasons where most of us over eat, or just before a holiday. I felt that most of the time I had a lot of energy. And the virtual fasting on days 1 and 2 really taught me the value of food. A lot of People report improvement in skin and hair on C9. I didn’t have that, but that’s because I’ve already been drinking aloe for some time.

I lost only 3 kg or 7 LB on this program. It’s not meant to make you lose a ton of weight, only to jumpstart the weight loss process and get you thinking differently about what you put in your mouth. I lost quite a few centimeters though and my jeans fit me a little better. We all know centimeters or inches are the real thing you wanna lose since muscles weigh more than fat, but take up less Space.

As I mentioned on day 1 of this program, I love the Norwegian name Change9 so much, because it implies that something will change for you during and after this program in terms of your health. In England, the United States and many other countries, this program is known as Clean9 which sounds a lot less appealing, at least to me.

So what now? Nine days is not a lot of time to learn new and good habits. But luckily, forever has the F1 and F2 programs. You’ll take the supplements you did on C9, but you’re allowed more calories from healthy foods. Basically, it’s just healthy eating plus supplements and exercise. Should be quite straight forward really.

But the good thing about being on the forever Fit programs is that you will learn things like portion controls and regular eating. Both of which I need to work on LOL, so that’s why I went on it rather than just eating sensibly. The supplements are good for me anyway and those protein chocolate bars are delish!

F1 and 2 also focuses a lot on exercise. I do a lot of that already, so won’t follow the program entirely on that one, but it may have some handy things I can learn so I can exercise better when I’m travelling.

If you live in Norway and would like to try C9, you can contact me by going to the contact link on my page, or through facebook or twitter.  If you don’t live in Norway and want to try c9, contact me anyway. I’ll be able to help you in the right direction of where to get it. C9, F1 and F2 is a program for everybody whether you want to lose a lot of weight, a little weight, or just learn new good habits. And if you’re not happy With the program, Forever does have a customer guarantee. So it’s free if you didn’t like it. 🙂 In Norway this guarantee is 90 days. I believe it’s 60 in the UK, so it varies from country to country.

Disclaimer: I have not been paid by Forever Living to write this post.

Change9 Day 6

This is technically day 7 of my change9 program. I meant to post yesterday, but was feeling a bit unwell. Nothing related to this program though.

I’m feeling great! I’m full of energy and I’ve lost in total 3 kg, or 7 LB so far plus centimeters. I’m trying out some new recipes and I’m actually quite chuffed to find that a lot of the foods are things I naturally made and ate before. My friends always told me I was healthy, but I never believed them LOL. My challenge is the portion size. I like to stuff an entire plate of rice in my mouth during a meal, but I have to learn to reduce it and eat more veg. But that’s details. I’m looking forward to being able to eat more than 1000 calories per day though since I’m very active and could do with some extra protein now and then. But my longing for potato chips and chocolate is absent! Hurray!

It wasn’t really until day 4 I started getting lots of energy. I fell into some kind of food coma after my meal on day 3. Probably my body’s shock reaction to getting such a big meal after days without proper food.

I’ve only got two more days after today. Bring them on. I can do this!

Change 9 days 2 and 3

I suppose I should wait till after my evening meal to write this post, but I’m in a good work flow now, so decided not to.

It’s day 3 on my Change9 plan and I feel amazing! As I’d feared, day 2 was the worst. You haven’t eaten in one day and you won’t be eating until the next day. You’re supposed to do light exercise the first two days, but I was too grumpy and lacking in energy to do anything at all apart from the necessary stuff to get through the day. I even slept badly and actually had dreams of getting up and making my smoothie.

But the two days have been worth it. It got me thinking how lucky I am to be able to access pretty much any food at any time. And it also made me realize that apart from the obvious hunger, I didn’t miss actual food as much as I missed being able to eat whatever, whenever.

I lost 2, 5 kg which is 5 LB and 5 cm or 1 inch from my waist. Having had protein smoothie, fiber and protein shake, I’ve felt full all day and I’ve actually managed to do a lot of house work and business presentation planning at the same time. Who knew protein shakes could be so filling_

As for my meal tonight, I look forward to it, but not as much as I’d thought. I’m happy I can finally eat though and I hope I’ll keep losing weight and inches. I’m not really a big girl by any means, but I feel that the loss I’ve had was really quite needed.

Change 9, day 1.

So today was the first day of my C9 challenge and I thought I’d blog about it since it’s a Forever Living thing and as I’m sure most of you know by now, I work with it.It’s also the first time ever I do any kind of dietary challenge, so I want to share my experiences on it since it’s becoming a very popular program.

C9 is called Clean9 around the world, but in Norway it’s called Change9. But though the name is different it’s exactly the same program as everywhere else, except the government is kind of strict on supplements, so we don’t have a certain supplement that’s supposed to help you burn more fat, but I don’t mind because it means I can drink more tea and coffee, though the idea is that you really should limit the consumption of caffeine for the duration of the nine days. .
Anyway, I love the name Change9 a lot more than Clean9 because it at least to me implies slightly different things. Whilst Clean9 sounds like a pure cleanse, Change9 sounds like the beginning of changing yourself. And that is what the program ultimately is. Sure, you may lose some weight and inches on it, but the idea is to get you thinking about food differently. It is the first step in a 69 day program, and it’s followed by Fit1 and Fit2 which focuses more on healthy eating and exercising habits.
Truth be told, I’m glad the first day is nearly over. The first two days on this program are quite tough. You are allowed only one protein shake at lunch time and mainly water, Aloe Vera gel, fiber which is a little filling and supplements for the rest of the day. However, there is a free list of fruit and vegetables you can eat from and I’ve been using it throughout the day including in my shake to make a smoothie. The day has actually gone very well and I was even able to go to the gym. The key for me was lots of flavours. Tangerines, blueberries, my favourite white tea, cherry tomatos etc, made it more bareable. I’m getting to the point now though where I’m dreaming of all kinds of food and large plates of it!

On the remaining seven days of the program I’ll be able to have two shakes and a 600 calorie meal, so I’ll be holding on for Tuesday and do and update on my progress then.