The winter season is upon us and we have even seen some big thunderstorms recently. This is the time of year when we just want to curl up under a duvet, drink buckets of tea with the heating on, all of which I’m a fan of by the way. Rest, relaxation and time to reflect is essential.
However, this also seems like the busiest, most hectic time of year with shopping and parties in amongst work and looking after children, attending nativity plays, making costumes, visiting family and friends. It can be very easy to neglect our health and fitness and start to feel run down and exhausted.
So here are my 5 survival tips for getting through the festive season
- Sip water regularly throughout the day. I know its cold and its very tempting to just sip on hot tea or coffee or grab a gingerbread latte for the coffee shop, which is loaded with calories but just try and keep a water bottle to hand so that you can stay hydrated. Especially if you are in artificial heating for most of your day.
- Get some natural light every day. There are numerous benefits to natural daylight, including the prevention of SAD (seasonal affective disorder), it can also promote healing and help with circadian rhythm which affects sleep. So, wrap up warm with gloves, hat and scarf and head outside for a lovely brisk walk.
- Include good sources of protein in your diet. Protein is essential for human health. Some we need to take in through our food as our bodies can’t produce them. There are so many benefits to protein, healthy skin and hair, help with weight loss and satiety, muscle retention and most importantly at this time of year, protein is necessary for healthy immune function. So if you want to stay well this winter, eat your protein. Lean meats and fish are great sources and if you aren’t a meat eater try adding quinoa, soy, feta, cottage cheese and buckwheat for a good hit of vegetarian protein.
- Eating plenty of plant based food alongside protein will ensure you get all of the vitamins and minerals you need at this time of year. ‘Eat the rainbow’ as they say, make it colourful with lots of variety of fruits and vegetables. Try adding ginger, beetroot, citrus fruits, kale and squash to keep all systems humming.
- And finally, don’t forget to STOP. Sleep, rest, relaxation are so important for mental and physical health. As you’re rushing around ticking things off your list don’t forget to take some time out to just be and to breathe. There is a lot to be said for having a warm, comfortable space to curl up in and just stop. Take a look at what hygge means and how to create a space you would love to retreat to and just relax.