Winter is Amazing.. but we need to stay healthy and happy.. how?
Winter is fast approaching, heralded by the darkening evenings and the chill in the air. With the advent of the new season, we’re also entering peak cold and flu season – with no let-up until spring blooms in March. But don’t despair! There’s plenty of ways to stay healthy and to support your immune system during the chilly months ahead. Here at Wonderpedia, we’ve compiled five of the best ways to keep your body ticking along as winter sets in.
1. Take vitamin D supplement
Researchers have hypothesized that rates of illness increase during winter months because of widespread vitamin D deficiency. Supplementation with vitamin D3 during the cold and flu season can significantly lower rates of infection. Studies have shown that vitamin D helps to trigger the body’s T-cells, the part of the lymphatic system which fights foreign pathogens. Vitamin D is best produced by (safely) exposing the skin to sunlight, but in the winter this is sorely lacking – load up by taking a supplement or by eating plenty of oily fish, eggs and dairy.
2. Eat the rainbow
Eating a healthy, varied diet is important all year round, but it’s particularly vital in the winter months when high rates of infection and low vitamin D levels can mean our immune system takes a beating. Eating brightly coloured foods high in vitamin C – such as kiwi, peppers, broccoli and oranges – will keep your immune system strong and ward off seasonal illnesses. Planning your plate around the colours of the rainbow and loading up on colourful veggies doesn’t just make your meal look prettier: different colored vegetables contain different vitamins so eating lots of different sorts is a simple way to make sure you’re getting all the nutrients you need to stay fit and healthy.
3. Get moving
Moving from the warmth of your home and the comfy sofa is probably the last thing you fancy doing after a trek home in the dark. But research has consistently found that a moderate level of regular exercise strengthens the immune system in the long-term. You don’t need to run a marathon or swim across the Channel: simply walking for 30 minutes a day is sufficient to provide these benefits. Exercising also positively impacts mood, providing a powerful antidote to the winter blues.
4. Be a social butterfly
Social connections play a key role in keeping us healthy. People with wide social networks have even been found to live 22% longer than those who prefer to stay home alone. Whether it’s inviting your friends around for dinner or bundling up to go for a winter walk with a partner, making time to savour and nourish connections with those whose company you enjoy will do your social life and your body a world of good. It’s more important than ever during the winter months, when the long dark nights and wealth of time spent indoors can contribute to low mood and even clinical depression.
5. Get some shut-eye
A lack of sleep can wreak havoc on your immune system, seriously compromising health. This makes a person much more susceptible to catching colds and the flu. Going to bed at around the same time every day, even at the weekend, helps to regulate your sleep-wake cycle and ensure your body clock is working the way it should. But resist the temptation to burrow back under the covers and press the snooze button: too much sleep is almost as harmful as too little. People who sleep for more than 8 hours every night have been found to be more likely to die of all causes and are more likely to develop depression.
This post is created by everydayhappy7 team.