Winter Wellness Guide: 10 Tips for a Healthy Holiday Season
Winter is a time to celebrate with family and friends, but it’s also when we are more susceptible to illness, stress and a lack of energy. With the proper care, you’ll be able to breeze through the holiday season without a cold or flu in sight. Keep these 10 tips in mind for a healthy mind, body and soul.
Sleep More: Lack of sleep makes your body extremely vulnerable to illnesses, moreso in winter than during other times of the year.. Take advantage of chilly evenings in and hit the sack an hour earlier to recharge those batteries.
Ditch the Coffee: Yes, a hot cup of coffee tastes oh-so good on a chilly winter morning, but caffeine stresses the adrenal glands that support the body’s immunity and energy. Switch to an herbal tea that provides immunity boosting antioxidants.
Boost Immunity with Food: What do garlic, yogurt and mushrooms all have in common? They all offer nutrients that help boost your immune system to offer an extra flu-fighting punch. Avoid the dreaded winter cough and runny nose by incorporating these nine immune boosting foods into your diet.
Avoid Sugar: Put down that second sugar cookie for a healthier immune system this season. According to Dr. Sears, eating or drinking eight tablespoons of sugar a day can reduce the ability of white blood cells to kill germs by 40 percent.
Get Happy: Avoid the mood swings associated with seasonal affective disorder by getting exposure to natural light for at least 30 minutes per day. If you live somewhere where you don’t experience a lot of sunlight during this time of year, invest in a light box to help with the disorder. Getting your daily dose of vitamin D is also recommended.
Socialize: Carve out time to spend with friends and family – it’s good for you. Socializing and being around others that make you happy, reduces your stress levels, lowers your blood pressure and strengthens your immune system, so don’t skip that dinner date.
Limit Your Alcohol Intake: Between all the holiday get-togethers, dinners and festivities, it’s hard to avoid alcohol completely. Try to stick to no more than two drinks to avoid illness this winter. Alcohol prevents nutrients from nourishing your immune system and reduces white blood cells, making it more difficult to fight disease.
Save Your Skin: Adjust your skincare routine to avoid overdrying from winter wind and the use of your heater. Change to a mild cleanser and opt for a heavy moisturizer at night. Buy a humidifier for your room to help hydrate skin overnight for a plump and dewy complexion. Read more dry skin remedies.
Stress Less:strong> Studies have linked high stress levels to higher rates of catching colds and the flu so do your best to de-stress during the chaotic holiday months. Whether you prefer meditation, massage therapy or a nice hot bath, each has the ability to lower your cortisol levels.
Stay Active: Don’t let the weather put a damper on your workout regime. Studies show that keeping up a moderate level of regular exercise has a long-term effect on immune response so keep those endorphins pumping.
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