Five ways to stay ahead of winter this year

Five ways to stay ahead of winter this year

Author -  Healtheries

Do the colder days have you feeling a little under the weather?

Don’t let the winter weather get on top of you.

That’s not unusual: frequent temperature changes – plus spending most of your day cooped up inside – can take their toll on your immunity. Then add in a tendency to reach for unhealthy comfort food on dreary, grey days…

It’s no wonder the winter weather might be starting to catch up with you!

Of course, it doesn’t need to be that way. Just a few lifestyle changes can help you to maintain your energy and vitality all winter long. Here are five areas you can focus on to stay ahead of winter.

Sleep well

There’s a clear link between sleep and immunity. Not only can regularly going short on sleep leave you feeling fuzzy-headed the next morning, but it can also make you more likely to catch whatever’s going around.

Everyone’s sleep requirements are different, but most of us need somewhere between 7-9 hours[1] each night. Make a plan to go to bed earlier, sleep in later, or do whatever you need to do to get the sleep your immune system needs.

Get active outdoors

Outdoor exercise is like a two-for-one gift for your immune system.Firstly, simply being outside in the fresh air can boost your mood and energy levels. Plus, even on cloudy days, you’ll still be getting some Vitamin D from the sunlight that makes it through.Secondly, regular exercise also actively helps to support your immunity.

Just remember to wrap up warmly to avoid those rapid temperature changes, and don’t overdo it.

Eat smart for the season

Your body needs a wide range of nutrients – including vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants – to maintain wellbeing, regardless of the season.The best way to get those nutrients is through fresh, whole foods: veges, fruit, nuts, seeds, whole grains, lean protein foods and healthy fats.

It might seem easier to get your daily 5+ fruit-and-veg servings during the “salads and smoothies” season of summer…but don’t forget that you can also make hearty, warming winter soups, stews, casseroles, bakes and other meals with nutritious vegetable bases.

Speaking of nutrients…top up if you need to

While eating a wide variety of those fresh, whole foods is absolutely the best way to get your nutrients, sometimes we can all use a top up. Some of the most important immunity supporting nutrients include vitamins like A, C, D and E; plus antioxidant minerals like Zinc and Selenium.

Each of these nutrients plays its own important role in supporting your body’s immune defences; so you’ll want to ensure you’re getting enough over winter.

Let Mother Nature give you a hand

There are also a host of natural herbs that can support your immunity when it could do with a little extra help. A few you might want to explore include:

  • Garlic
  • Olive leaf
  • Andrographis
  • Echinacea

Note: these herbs probably won’t make a lot of difference unless you’re already getting enough sleep, eating well, and exercising regularly. But alongside the smart lifestyle tips we’ve talked about above, they could help you stay ahead of winter this year.

[1] http://sleepfoundation.org/how-sleep-works/how-much-sleep-do-we-really-need

 
 
 
 
 

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