It may be getting cold outside, but that’s no reason to let your health go to pot this winter. If you want to avoid colds, flu, and fatigue over the holiday season, you’ll need to make every effort to maintain, and even improve, your general health, so you have plenty of energy to enjoy the festivities.
Even though every fiber of your being is telling you to hibernate, overriding these feelings and staying active during the colder months will ensure you stay happy and healthy for Christmas. To help you stay on track, here are four small ways to improve your health this winter.
See the Sun
Most people feel tired and sluggish during the winter months and find it harder to get out of bed. Depending on where you live, the cold weather may play a part in your fatigue, and the lack of sunlight will affect your sleeping and waking cycles, making you feel less motivated to get up and out.
Override Mother Nature by getting outdoors during daylight hours as much as possible, and be sure to get a good night’s sleep to help you stave off those morning blues. If you’re prone to seasonal affective disorder (SAD), you can sit in front of a light therapy box for twenty minutes per day to help lift your mood.
Kick the Habit
Do you have a bad habit you just can’t quit? Don’t wait until January to go cold turkey, as psychology experts suggest that our inability to hold down a New Year’s resolution is due to a behavior known as cultural procrastination. In other words, we’re setting ourselves up for failure because by planning ahead, we’re telling ourselves we’re not quite ready to break the habit.
Change your mindset by implementing your goals before the festive season gets underway. If you want to lose weight, start jogging or pledge to eat more mindfully over Christmas. If you’re determined to give up smoking, consider swapping your cigarettes for vaporizers and nicotine juice to help you wean off. If your goals are financial, set a budget at the start of December and start getting your money into shape now.
Don’t Skip Breakfast
Eating a hearty breakfast each morning will give you more energy throughout the day and help prevent hunger pangs and snacking. Winter is the perfect season for porridge, so buy yourself a big bag of oatmeal and boost your fiber intake. Although it’s tempting to comfort eat during the colder months, overeating will make you feel more tired and sluggish, whereas consuming plenty of fruit and vegetables until satiated will help you fight off colds and flu. Add some sliced banana to your porridge or enjoy a side of juicy clementine, and you’ll be feeling healthier in no time.
If the weather’s turning frosty, don’t use this as an excuse not to get outside. Keeping up with your daily exercise routine will boost your immunity and help you sleep more soundly. If there is snowfall in your state and it’s dangerous to go running, do a quick yoga sequence or exercise video at home instead – you’ll almost certainly feel better for it.