Never before has it been more crucial to look after your body, mind, and general well-being. After all, it is not every day we live through a global pandemic. And while we are making progress, the effects of the past 18 months have certainly taken their toll on most of us. Not to mention, colder months and flu season are coming for the northern hemisphere.
We all know that, as the weather gets cooler, we naturally think more about how to stay warm and avoid the plethora of viruses out there. Though it’s best to take precautions year-round, it seems more crucial to pay attention to health with the arrival of cooler weather. Here are some ways to stay healthier during winter and all year.
One of the most important pillars of health is staying active regularly. Unfortunately, however, it is the one that gets ignored the most. Indoor entertainment, sedentary lifestyles, and general disinterest in exercise have caused a decline in physical fitness, especially among the younger generations. If you find yourself or your family slipping into a lifestyle with little or no purposeful movement, I recommend that you look for ways to change that.
Simply taking regular walks and stretching every day is a perfect way to stay active without over-taxing a body that isn’t used to exercise. You should not need any special equipment to keep your body moving. Once you get used to moving more, you can work up to the recommended 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise each week.
Eat a Clean Diet
Winter’s combination of shorter days, longer nights, and a lack of something to look forward to can lead us to reach for comfort food. Though eating for comfort isn’t a hard “no”, it’s simply something you don’t want to do all the time. If you eat well most of the time, occasional treats are certainly OK. Try to eat various types of foods to ensure you get all of the vitamins and minerals you need. Pay attention to how you feel when you eat certain foods, as well. Intolerances and allergies can cause inflammation that disrupts immune function. Consuming more leafy green vegetables during the fall and winter will also help to boost your overall health and immunity.
While it is optimal to get the daily required nutrients from a variety of foods, when that isn’t possible, supplementing vitamins and minerals is acceptable. If you really want to know how your body is doing as far as nutrition, ask your doctor to run a full nutritional panel. If you are low on something, he/she might recommend that you supplement a certain amount.
Other herbs and supplements like those to calm inflammation can help support the body during the winter months. Consider things like CBD oils, curcumin, echinacea, cat’s claw, and mullein to give extra support and pain relief while also providing other benefits.
Wash Hands Frequently
Washing your hands is one of your most effective defenses against numerous seasonal infections, not just those caused by worldwide pandemics. Many individuals will be dealing with minor colds, viruses, and flu this winter. Adopt a habit of washing your hands after touching objects or handling products. Definitely, wash them before you eat or touch your face for any reason. By maintaining proper hygiene in general, you will be providing yourself and others with an additional layer of protection.
Get Quality Sleep
Getting quality sleep is essential for maintaining good health. Though some people can get by with only 6 hours of sleep a night, most require much more. The truth is, sleep disturbances and simply missing a couple of hours each night make your body more susceptible to illnesses such as colds and flu. This is primarily because our bodies and minds heal and restore during sleep. That means if there are things out of balance and viral attacks happening, sleep allows all body systems to do their jobs optimally.
If sleep has been a problem, consider making some changes. The most common things that cost us sleep are, overworking, bad mattress/pillow, electronics, noise, pets, pain, and room temp. You might have more than one of these things plaguing your sleep. I recommend choosing the most prominent issues and working toward a solution that works for your life.
Now is a perfect time to get more serious about your health. After all, you don’t want to wait until you get sick to suddenly make changes. At that point, it’s a little late to make much of a difference. Take these basic steps as soon as you can to give your body a better chance to stay healthy this winter.
**** This post is strictly informational and is not meant to replace the advice of your healthcare provider. Women’s lifelink, its owners, administrators, contributors, affiliates, vendors, authors, and editors do not claim that this information will diagnose, treat, or improve any condition or disease.