Well it’s that time of year again when the wind leaves a blustery and bitter sting! We hunker down in the house because we refuse to escape into the frigid winter air, leaving us more susceptible to colds, the flu, body aches, stuffy noses, congested heads, and a case of the winter blues ! So why not put up your dukes this year and fight back? Here’s my quick and easy guide to fight off the winter blues and keep the nasty cold and flu season in check!
Sleep More- Winter always brings shorter days and a lot more darkness than most of us can stand. I don’t know about you but I have a hard time staying motivated when all I want to do is stay curled up in my bed and sleep the day away. Something about climbing out from under the warm covers, nestled all snug in your bed. Then having to roll over and turn off the alarm to only look outside and see it’s still pitch dark, the stars are still twinkling back at you, and it’s 20 degrees out there definitely makes me want to never get out of bed again! Our bodies go into hibernation mode during the winter, more darkness causes our bodies to desire more sleep. So why not indulge it a little more this winter and boost your immune system. Go to bed a little earlier and sleep in a little longer when you can.
Eat Well- Winter brings on the desire to eat the heavier, fattier, not so good for you foods. Focus on eating the more healthy, more filling and nurturing foods. You can still eat the comfort foods we all love so much, just go for the better ones. Make your own soup or turkey chili. Incorporate more honey, it’s a natural immune booster and fights allergies. And don’t forget to up your fluids. Drink more water. Try to get 10 or more glasses a day to help flush your system.
Meditate & Down Time- Let your body rest. Give yourself some down time by reading a book, listening to music, or watching your favorite movie. Practice yoga or learn to meditate. Meditation calms the mind and allows you to refocus and reconnect the body. Focus on breathing and allow your body to slow down and heal from the days stress
Up your vitamins- Germs are all over the place, we can’t escape them. The winter cold forces us inside more, where germs tend to breed more from all the coughing, sneezing, and nose wiping. So up your vitamins. Take probiotics. Incorporate Vitamin C and Echinacea into your daily regime.
Exercise More- The more you move the higher your immune system boosts. As hard as it is to get to the gym when it’s not freezing out, the idea of having to get into that ice cold car is torture! Try to do at least 15 minutes of some kind of exercise a day. Pop in a DVD and do a fun booty barre or Zumba class. Try Pilates at home with a mat, hit the weight room or sign up for a spinning class at your local gym. Even running in place and jumping jacks are great in your living room!
Wash Your Hands A Lot- Washing your hands often is the key to keeping you healthier. Door handles, money, shopping carts, gyms , gas pumps, and mostly other people’s hands are a breeding zone for the cold and flu viruses. Keep yourself healthy this winter by keeping your hands clean.
Hope this helps you fight the winter blues and fight all those nasty invisible guys headed straight for your immune system! Here’s to a healthy 2013!