Is There A Link Between Vitamin D And Employee Productivity?
After a long dreary winter the re-emergence of the sun naturally brings many people out of their homes to enjoy the warm rays.
While a nice stroll in the sun helps to re-charge the Vitamin D stores in your body, most people actually need a more consistent supply. Wavelengths of light have also been shown to influence the production of the hormone melatonin, which controls the cycle of sleep and mental alertness. But how does the lack of Vitamin D in our systems affect employee productivity?
Employee productivity is one of the most critical factors for a business to be successful and profitable.
Employers want their employees to complete the maximum amount of work in the minimum amount of time in order to make more money in less time. However, there are many elements which affect employee productivity and weather is one of them.
Different weather creates different moods in different people. It is very hard to tell if one is going to be more productive on rainy or sunny days. However, you can look at both sides of the story and meet at an optimum point.
Sunny days do not always reflect a great day, and similarly, some of the best things happen on rainy days.
What you may not be aware of is that most people are low in their Vitamin D levels and this can also affect your mood and productivity. Low levels of Vitamin D are associated with depressed mood and even anxiety.
One well-known disorder that shows how weather affects work productivity is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). SAD is a form of depression that negatively impacts how people react to weather.
Studies have shown that those who are impacted by SAD tend to be less productive during the annual changing of the seasons, when it is raining or when there is a lack of sun.
However, people who are not suffering from SAD can still find that certain weather conditions can result in different degrees of productivity.
Vitamin D supplements have shown to prevent Seasonal Affective Disorder. Likewise, increases in Vitamin D through light and vitamin supplementation are associated with increases in happiness, self-esteem, and well-being. In turn, happiness, self-esteem, and well-being are linked to increases in productivity.
As with everything else, moderation is key. So what are the experts telling us? Check out these 5 easy ways to increase your Vitamin D intake, and thus your happiness and productivity:
Vitamin D Sources
- Eat more mushrooms (shitake have more vitamin D than white mushrooms). You can also expose your mushrooms to the sun and they will increase in Vitamin D levels.
- Fatty fish can be a good source of vitamin D. Eat wild salmon, mackerel, tuna, and local free-range chicken eggs.
- Take a daily cod liver oil supplement.
- Buy a SAD light. This is the treatment of choice by mental health professionals to treat seasonal affective disorder. You can buy one of these special lights online, for use in your own home.
- On sunny days, leave your office at lunch time and take a walk to eat your lunch outside. After some initial effort, this will become an enjoyable habit. The exercise will boost your mood as well!
SAD, Sun, Vitamin D, Workplace