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Tips For A Healthy Winter

Winter Health

As we buckle down into winter, with our first flutters of snow, how can you fight the dreaded office cold or the latest bug from the kids classroom?  Check out some simple, easy ways to boost your immune system, avoid germs and minimise your risk of injury.

Sanitise your phone - As our phones have got smarter, we tend to carry them everywhere, including to the bathroom.  So think what hidden ‘germs’ could be lurking on your screen.  But before you reach for your antibacterial wipe to wipe down the screen, stop!!  You could do more damage than good.  Instead check out this article - 

Bathe in scents - run a warm bath and stick in some epsom salts and lavender oil.  The salts will ease your tired muscles and the oil will relax your mind, helping you to switch off before bedtime

Stretch out - as the weather drops, we tend to sit more, shortening our hamstrings and chest muscles, as well as reducing our mobility.  So try and introduce some stretching a couple of times a week.  Remember to do so once your have got your muscles warm, especially in cold temperatures

Stress Less - You can easily boost your immune system by simply lowering your stress levels - take up yoga, read a book, chat to a friend on the phone - whatever helps you unwind and switch off

Cuddle more - Numerous studies have been demonstrated the power of a simple hug, helping you to relax, feel loved and happy.  So what better excuse to snuggle up to a loved one

Drink more - nope, not wine, but water.  Due to it being cooler, we tend to drink less during the winter, waiting until we feel thirsty, by which time we are already dehydrated.  Start your day with 500ml of water, and then make sure you carry some with you, drink regularly during the day

Spice up your food - add some cinnamon, cumin, cloves etc to boost your anti-inflammatories.  Add to your soup, sprinkle some cinnamon on your yoghurt, or pop some ginger into your infused water

Moisturise - the combination of cold, damp weather and washing our hands will dry out our hands, making them prone to cracking and sore.  Try and moisturise after every hand wash to keep you skin smooth

Accomplishment List - we all know I love a goal, but sometimes we can focus too much on what we need to do, and less on what we have done.  This will of course add to our stress levels.  So every time we achieve something, pop it on a piece of paper, and pop it in a jam jar.  When you feel drained and despondent, you can reach for your jar, and see how much you have accomplished so far

Massage - like we ever needed an excuse for a massage, but if you do, they are excellent for boosting your immune system and reducing your cortisol levels by as much as 53%.

Get out - with the days getting longer (at last), go walking.  The fresh air will help clear your mind, you’ll get some vitamin D from the sun, and the walk will help mobilised your joints, loosen tight muscles and give you cardiovascular system a good clear out.

Get a flu jab - no explanation needed here

Take your own pen - Pens get dropped, chewed, used to pry up things etc, so can carry a wealth of bugs and germs.  Simply carrying your own will help reduce your risk of infection

Sleep more - use the darker nights and colder weather as a great excuse to sneak in a few earlier nights.  If the body is refreshed and recharged, it is better at fighting of those pesky colds and other illnesses.

Boost your vitamin D naturally - Eat plenty off wild salmon, trout, mushrooms, egg yolks and Greek yoghurt to increase your vitamin D levels, which in turn will improve your skin, heart, immune system and mental health

Herbal teas - drinking green, ginger, mint or other herbal teas can increase you antioxidants.  Sample different flavours, until you find one you like, with a favourite of mine, bearing in mind I hate tea, being Valerian root - helps me sleep like a baby.

Hopefully you’ll haver picked up a few simple tips to try, in the meantime I am off to stretch, sip a Valerian root tea, whilst soaking in the bath and ignoring the ironing, before an early night (as long as the kids stay in bed ;-) )