The winter is always a tumultuous time for both your physical and mental health. The risk of you getting sick and missing work increase ten fold. However, with a little extra effort on your part, you can fight off both mental and physical sickness by doing just a few simple, but proven things.
1. Watch Your Weight
Clinical studies show that people tend to gain more weight in the winter than any other time of the year, and that weight is not easy to lose. With that in mind, try to say no to the extra helping of cake at the next company party. Your physical well-being will thank you in the long run.
2. Keep Up with Vitamin D
The sun reacts with chemicals in your body to create enough vitamin D to meet your daily vitamin D needs. Since the sun is rather scarce in winter, many people lack a sufficient amount of vitamin D and sometimes experience a common mental illness known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), more commonly known as Winter Depression. To avoid the winter blues, look into taking vitamin D supplements or increasing your intake of foods like milk, trout, and fortified cereals, all major sources of vitamin D.
3. Boost Your Immune System
Though the germs you find on door handles are the instigator, catching a cold ultimately depends on the strength of your immune system. The best thing you can do for your immune system is to maintain a habit of healthy diet and exercise and avoid unhealthy habits like eating too much sugar, smoking, and consuming caffeine.
4. Get Your Exercise
As mentioned previously, exercise is a major contributor to your overall health. People generally get a lot less exercise in winter because of the cold. However, if you want to stay healthy and happy over the winter, you’ll look into ways to add more exercise to your daily routine, such as joining a gym or finding exercises to do at home.
5. Avoid the Germs
Germs are everywhere you go, especially during the winter, and there is not nearly enough disinfectant in the world to stop them from reaching everyone. However, you can do your part by getting some hand sanitizer and using it often. This all natural hand sanitizer is a great option. It effectively disinfects without drying out your hands.
6. Sleep It Off
You can avoid a vast number of minor illnesses just by getting enough sleep. The average adult needs 7-9 hours of sleep each night, but most adults don’t fill their nightly quota. Though it may not be obvious, there is a direct connection between your health and the amount of sleep you get.
7. Eat Healthy
Eating healthy is an important part of your lifestyle any time of the year, but especially during the winter. The right foods boost your immune system and help you keep off the extra pounds you might otherwise gain. A healthy diet is the key to preventing many illnesses and diseases, both now and later in life.
Don’t forget about keeping the outside of your body healthy too. Your skin has probably suffered plenty from the cold weather, making it integral to moisturize all exposed skin daily if you want it to stay healthy.
9. Fight the Stress
Winter weather leaves a depressed mood hanging in the air. The roads are generally bad, and you still have your high utility bills to pay at the end of the day. All that stress can really affect your emotional and physical health. Find healthy ways to cope with your stress, like taking time for yourself, practicing breathing exercises, using a stress ball, or talking it out. Avoid unhealthy forms of coping like comfort eating and alcohol consumption.
10. Drink Water
To keep your immune system strong and your body in general good health, drink enough water. Water helps to flush out bad bacteria in your body as well as allow proper function of all organs. The average person should drink about half their bodyweight in ounces per day. The frequent trips to the bathroom may be annoying at first, but you’ll soon get used to them, and your healthy body will thank you in the long run.
11. Lather, Rinse, but Skip Repeat.
Your hair takes quite a beating in the cold air. Even though it feels good to wash it often, using too much shampoo can actually strip essential minerals from your locks, making it more unhealthy than ever. When your hair is brittle and sensitive during the cold months, cut down on the amount of shampoo you use, as well as the frequency you use it, and definitely skip the repeat.
12. Take a Vacation
Vacations should not be reserved for the summer, though that does seem to be the most convenient time to go. For your mental health, try taking a short vacation in the winter as well. It will do wonders for you to get out of the cold drudgery of daily life and experience some really enjoyable family and/or friends time.
When winter swoops in and tries to put you in a cold slump, don’t take it lying down. Stand up and fight back in order to have a healthier, happier you all winter long.