winter is a tough time to be healthy. it's cold, dark, and not exactly conducive to getting outside for your daily run or yoga session. but that doesn't mean that your wellness has to take a winter break! here are some tips for staying healthy this season:
there's nothing wrong with enjoying a treat or two, but you should be careful not to overindulge. you know those cookies that are so tasty you end up eating three? think twice before taking the third bite.
that's because research shows that food can affect your mood and energy levels in the same way as drugs do, especially if the foods you eat have high levels of sugar and fat. in fact, many people are addicted to sugar and carbs—and they don't even know it! according to a study published in nature communications, sugar activates reward centers in our brains similar to how cocaine does (think: dopamine). so if you've been feeling sluggish lately or getting headaches after eating certain foods, there might be an underlying reason why!
get some natural sunlight.
the sun can be your best friend when it comes to health. sunlight is good for you and getting outside will help you produce vitamin D, which is important for the function of your immune system. vitamin D also helps prevent cancer and osteoporosis.
if it's too cold outside to get some natural sunlight, consider using a UV lamp.
one of the most important steps to staying healthy and fit during winter is exercise. exercise helps keep you warm, boosts your mood, and can also stave off depression. it can be as simple as taking a walk through your neighborhood or going on a hike with friends.
one of the best ways to stay motivated to exercise is by setting goals for yourself, such as setting aside 30 minutes each day for physical activity or participating in an upcoming 5k run. it's also good to know whether you're getting enough sleep—if you aren't sleeping enough, it could make exercising more difficult because you'll feel tired during the day and have difficulty concentrating on other activities besides running errands or working out at home.
mindfulness is a simple and effective way to relax your body and mind in the winter. it can also reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. but mindfulness isn’t just for your mental health—it can help you clear your head and get outside more often. as the weather starts to cool down, it’s easy to stay indoors with Netflix on repeat. But when you make time for yourself each day, you feel better all around!
- set aside sometime every day for mindfulness practice (like 10–15 minutes). you can do this by yourself or with friends who are trying out mindfulness too! whatever works best for you is what matters here; just make sure that whatever method works best for you won't distract from practicing being present in the moment.* find a quiet place where there aren't any distractions nearby like TVs or phones so they don't pull away from focusing on your breath.* take slow deep breaths through either nostril at first before switching off between each nostril every couple minutes until finished.* focus on how those breaths feel as they're going through each nostril--what does it smell like? does anything else come to mind while doing this exercise? if so try not thinking about those things instead focus on *feeling* them instead until finished
take care of your mental health!
in the winter, it's easy to feel like you're living in a dark cloud. your skin dries out, your hands crack and peel, and all you want to do is curl up on the couch with a blanket and watch your favorite shows. but if you don't take care of your mental health during this time of year, it can have serious consequences: depression, anxiety disorders, and more. so how do we know if something is going wrong? signs include feeling sad or down for no reason at all (or even just feeling blue); losing interest in activities that used to bring joy; having trouble sleeping; having trouble concentrating; overeating or undereating; having suicidal thoughts or making plans for suicide; hearing voices or seeing things that aren't there. if any of these apply to you (or someone else), call 1-800-273-8255 now!
your wellness doesn't need to take a winter break!
winter is a good time to take care of your health. it's also a good time to take care of your mental health, physical health, and spiritual health.
here are some ways you can incorporate wellness into your life:
- get enough sleep! this is especially important for people who travel for work or school during this time of year.
- eat healthy foods! make sure that you're getting enough fruits and vegetables in your diet. and don't forget about protein! try eating fish—it's high in omega-3 fatty acids, which help keep the body healthy by reducing inflammation.* drink tea! it tastes great, plus it has antioxidants that can reduce stress levels and improve cognitive function.* exercise regularly! this doesn't mean going on long runs every day; instead, just walk around the block every evening before dinner so that you feel energized when it comes time for bedtime.* practice mindfulness meditation! this helps us become more aware of our thoughts so that we don't overreact when something bad happens (like spilling coffee all over ourselves).
the winter season is a great time to slow down, relax and focus on taking care of yourself. as we said before, it can be easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life, so take these tips with you on your next adventure. whether it’s riding your bike through the snow or enjoying some warm cocoa by a crackling fire—you deserve it!
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