Top Tips For Staying Healthy During Winter.
With winter upon us, now is the time to start looking at your daily routine.With the change in season and temperature it is important to change our drinking, eating and bathing habits. As a clinical Naturopath I show people how to take care of their health. Below are my tips for surviving the colder months.
- Keep hydrated – Drinking plenty of water in winter is just as important as in the warmer months to ensure our kidneys work efficiently. Warmer temperatures inside your house and car, wearing extra layers of clothing and engaging in winter sports means your body is still sweating and if you don’t get enough fluids it can lead to under hydration. We also lose water vapour through our breath (that steam that comes out of your mouth on a cold day). Eat plenty of winter fruits and vegetables as they are a natural source of water as well as drinking fluids such as warm water with lemon or clear soups.
- Eat seasonally - There is a reason nature outputs certain fruits and vegetables in a particular season. By eating fruit or vegetables at their prime time you’re getting them when they’re at their seasonal best. There is no nutritional value in eating foods that have been sitting in cold storage for months. By eating seasonally your body gets the warming fruits and vegetables in winter, and in summer eat the fruits that will keep your body cool eg watermelon and strawberries. Buying at farmers markets or home grown vegetables and herbs give you extra flavour, extra crunch, extra juiciness - all super-fresh and at great value prices. Home grown and organic is better as you do not have the pesticides which are harmful to your health.
- Rotate your grains - Don’t just eat the same wheat-based products (breads, pasta/noodle, biscuits) day in and day out. Wheat is one of the most highly sprayed crop in the world and gluten, a substance found in wheat disagrees with some people. Shake up your eating habits by trying new types of gluten-free grains such as kamut, quinoa, millet, brown rice or buckwheat.
- Add Garlic and Ginger to your diet – Most people avoid garlic because they are worried that they will end up smelling of it. Garlic is a natural antimicrobial, has been used for many years to help treat the common cold and flu, your immune system will benefit if you give it a daily boost of garlic. Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties ,adding a slice of fresh ginger with lemon and honey in a tea is very warming and helps with your digestion too.
- Skin brush with a Loofah - When you perspire all the toxins that are eliminated from your body sit on your skin. Skin brushing stimulates the lymphatic system helping to release toxins. Lymphatic congestion is a major factor leading to inflammation and disease.
- Meditation- Take 20 minutes to sit quietly and breathe deeply and go within, this creates space for drowning out the constant chatter of the mind and lets you be mindful of every moment in your day. You will find the peace and tranquillity within and meditation then becomes a daily practise you will not miss, like having a meal or going to the gym.
- Laughter is the best medicine- Give your self permission to have fun and watch or do something that gives you a belly ache, laughter brings out the good endorphins in your body, which are positively beneficial to your health and wellness i.e. mind, body and spirit.