As we are already in mid-winter, the cold weather can cause or aggravate many health conditions.
Nevertheless, as our bodies adapt to the new climate, there are some simple tips that each of us can follow to stay healthy during the winter.
Here is a list of Twelve of our favourite health tips that you can adopt to boost your health and enjoy the snowy season. Read on!
1. Wash your hands regularly.
Fortunately for us, one of the best-known ways to stay healthy in winter is still one of the best: washing your hands with soap and water. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, germs can enter your hands from a variety of sources. Washing them regularly will remove germs from your hands and help protect you from respiratory infections and viruses.
2. Stick to your medication regimen and see your doctor when you are sick
Because every older person is different, talk to your doctor about how you can stay healthy during the winter months. Taking extra precautions to protect yourself from illness is the best way to ensure that you enjoy all the things you look forward to doing during the season and that you always take your medication as prescribed, regardless of the season. Your chances of a better health outcome improve when you take your medication as directed, so always stick to the right dosage at the right time and in the right way.
We all know that maintaining our health can be expensive, so to save on your prescriptions, you can look for coupons to help you buy them at the lowest price at your local pharmacy.
3. Eat healthy, seasonal foods
A healthy diet will boost your immune system and help your body fight off viruses or infections. Your body needs antioxidants and vitamins to stay healthy. According to the Daily Burn website, foods and spices that provide your body with what it needs to fight off illness include garlic, sweet potatoes, turmeric, dark leafy greens, and, as you may have guessed, chicken soup.
Eating healthy, seasonal foods is an important rule for eating right and carefully. Especially in winter, there is a great need for foods that naturally warm the body and provide the highest levels of antioxidants to help prevent flu and colds.
So, in addition to whole grains, try eating more lean meats, fish, poultry, pulses, nuts, herbs, and plenty of seasonal vegetables and fruits such as winter squash, ginger, kale, and citrus fruits for an extra dose of vitamin C.
4. Don’t forget to exercise and stay active in your fitness routine.
Staying active will help to promote bone and muscle health, manage your weight and improve your sleep patterns, leading to a healthier lifestyle throughout the year. Generally speaking, the stronger you are, the better your body will be able to fight off illness – or recover even if you do your best to avoid it.
The cold, short days, and long, cold nights can make it difficult for many people to get out of bed, let alone exercise. However, physical activity is an important aspect of staying fit and healthy throughout the winter months. A jogging routine, yoga, or any other physical activity will help you stay warm and boost your immune system, improving your body’s defences against seasonal illnesses.
In addition, exercise can also help you cope better with seasonal depression at this time of year.
5. Get some sunshine
The sun is limited in winter, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get out in the sun during the day. If you don’t see it, it doesn’t mean it’s not there. So expose yourself to as much sunlight as possible to boost your serotonin levels, regulate your circadian rhythm and get rid of the winter blues.
6. Get a good night’s sleep
Sleep plays a vital role in both our physical and mental health. Adequate sleep helps keep our immune system healthy, eliminates the stress hormone cortisol, and helps our body’s metabolic processes.
In addition, a good night’s sleep is vital to maintaining our overall mental health. For example, a night of sleep deprivation can seriously affect our mood the next day, and chronic poor sleep has been linked to depression and anxiety. Sleep is, therefore, an uncompromising factor in maintaining physical health.
7. Drink more water
We all know how important it is to stay hydrated during the summer months. However, many people’s water intake drops significantly during the winter months. Water helps our bodies cleanse themselves, eliminate toxins, balance body fluids and deliver nutrients to our cells. It also plays an important role in maintaining white blood cells and other immune system cells.
In addition, dull skin often occurs in winter due to dry air and lack of moisture. So, drinking water regularly can help you keep your skin looking radiant. Most importantly, staying hydrated will ensure you stay healthy during the winter months.
8. Stay warm outside
While your body is working hard to protect your health from the cold, especially if you spend hours outside, be aware and dress appropriately. Dressing warmly outside can help you stay healthy all winter long. When it comes to staying warm while training, our advice is to drink as many hot drinks as possible.
9. Enjoy your ‘rest’ time
Stress and your immune system have a complex relationship, which means your body knows when you’re stressed and you need time to get back on your feet. With this in mind, use this winter and the upcoming holidays as the perfect excuse to organise a relaxing life. As contradictory as they may sound, making time for downtime is just as important as staying active. Your body (and mind, by the way) needs time to regroup through relaxation and proper sleep. As many of us know first-hand, the mere lack of sleep can make you feel sick. So take a break and help your body protect itself. It can only do so much for you.
Leisure activities such as gathering at home with friends, watching comedy, taking a walk in a snowy park, or playing with your dog will help immune function. You must prioritise your well-being and take time out from modern stressors such as technology.
10. Sanitise your surroundings.
As well as washing your hands, wiping down surfaces will help kill germs if you know the people around you are in weather conditions.
11. Bundle up.
Staying healthy in winter is not just about avoiding colds or flu. It’s also about protecting your body. When you’re outdoors, always bundle up. Wear a jacket, a hat, boots and a scarf to protect your face. Although they are often taken for granted, these gloves are very important in protecting your fingers from frostbite and they can often retain heat to keep your body warm.
12. Get a flu shot.
Flu season seems to be coming on every day. Flu strains are constantly adapting to medical safeguards, so getting a proper flu vaccination can greatly improve the ability of older people to fight or recover from the flu. Flu prevention is especially important for those who have recently been hospitalised or are taking medications that weaken the body’s immune system.
In the middle of the winter season, snuggle up by the fireplace. Sipping a soothing hot chocolate. Have a good laugh with friends and family over your favourite movie. Watching snowflakes fall while cooking your favourite comfort food. Even winter thoughts can warm your heart and bring music to your ears.
Winter is the season to nourish our bodies and do what we can to strengthen our immune systems. Eating nutritious, warm foods, drinking plenty of water, sleeping well, and staying active are important aspects of staying healthy during the winter months.