5 ways to stay healthy this winter
Winter needn’t be the unhealthiest time of year for you.
Here are five ways to make sure that, even when your body is telling you to hibernate, you can keep fit and healthy this winter, no matter what the weather’s like.
Banish winter tiredness
Many people feel tired and sluggish during winter. This is due to the lack of sunlight. Many of us go to work in the dark and leave when it is dark. This disrupts our sleep and waking cycles.
Try these tips:
- Go outdoors in natural daylight as much as possible
- Get a good night’s sleep – go to bed and wake up at the same time every day- even on weekends
- De-stress with exercise or meditation – stress has been shown to make you feel tired. Try these 5 relaxation techniques to banish stress.
Eat more fruit and veg
When it’s cold and dark outside, it can be tempting to fill up on unhealthy comfort food. Your desk at work may start to fill up with sweet treats, mince pies and advent calendars, however, it’s important to ensure you still have a healthy diet and include five portions of fruit and veg a day.
If you find yourself craving a sugary treat, try a juicy clementine or satsuma instead.
Winter vegetables such as carrots, parsnips and turnips can be roasted, mashed or made into soup for a comforting winter lunch.
Winter is also a great time to explore varieties of fruit and veg that you may not normally eat.
Drink more milk
You are more likely to get a cold near the end of the year, so make sure your immune system is in tip-top condition to keep you healthy this winter.
Milk and dairy products such as cheese, yoghurt and fromage frais are great sources of:
- Vitamins A and B12
- Calcium, which helps keep our bones strong
Choose semi-skimmed, 1% or skimmed milk – rather than full-fat – and low-fat plain yoghurts.
Try new activities
Don’t use the cold winter months as an excuse to stay in and lounge around. Instead, get out to try out a new activity. You could invite your team to go ice skating, or you could take a bracing winter walk through the park on your break.
Regular exercise helps control your weight, boost your immune system, and is a good way to break the tension that can build if your team is constantly cooped up inside the office.
Have a hearty breakfast
Winter is the perfect season for porridge. Eating a warm bowlful on a cold morning isn’t just a delicious way to start your day, it also helps boost your intake of starchy foods and fibre.
These foods give you energy and help you feel fuller for longer, stopping the temptation to snack mid-morning. Oats also contain lots of vital vitamins and minerals.
Make your porridge with semi-skimmed, 1% or skimmed milk, or water, and don’t add sugar or salt. Add a sliced banana, berries or other fruit for extra flavour and to help you hit your 5 A Day target.