Staying healthy during the winter months is a challenge. Pneumonia, influenza, the common cold, and bronchitis are just a few of the many illnesses prone to spread during the winter months. The cold weather has a tendency to weaken the immune system, which is one reason people are more likely to get sick during the colder months. Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to prevent illness this year. Below are some of the best prevention tips for you and your family.
Exercising is one of the key things you can do to strengthen your immune system. You have the chance to get your body moving, work out different muscles and relieve stress. It is estimated that nine out of 10 diseases and illnesses are linked to stress. You should exercise for 30 to 60 minutes most days of the week. Even though exercise is important, you don’t want to overdo it. Some studies suggest that too much exercise can actually weaken the immune system as well. Do what you can and track your progress for a visible representation of your health.
Wash Your Hands
Because viruses and bacteria can very easily be transmitted from person to person, it’s important to wash your hands frequently. Thoroughly wash after using the restroom and before eating a meal. Experts recommend washing the hands for a minimum of 30 seconds. You will also need to make sure you get underneath your fingernails. Only use soap and warm water, and be sure you dry them properly. Sing your ABC’s if you need to.
A nutritious diet will also help keep you and your family healthy this winter. Vitamin C (which is found in green leafy vegetables and citrus fruits) has been shown to shorten the duration of the common cold and influenza. Zinc is another nutrient that supports a healthy immune system. Beef, spinach, shrimp, and oysters are some of the foods that are high in zinc. Try to keep fresh foods on hand, and be sure you’re getting a vitamin supplement if it’s not possible.
Stress Less and Relax
A stressful lifestyle increases your chances of getting sick in two ways. It suppresses your immune system, and you are also more likely to overindulge on sugary or unhealthy foods when you are stressed. According to Coquitlam Centre Dental Clinic, sugary foods may not only weaken your teeth, but can also weaken your immune system. That is why it is important to manage your stress and eat healthy even when fresh foods are hard to come by.
Even though winter weather can weaken the immune system, you can keep yourself healthy this winter. Washing your hands, exercising, and eating healthy will keep you well. You should also keep your stress level under control to have happy holidays this year.