As the weather gest colder and the days get shorter, it’s important to incorporate self-care routines that reflect the change of the season. Here are a few quick tips to help you stay healthy and happy:
1) Boost your immune system by adding vitamin supplements to your health routine. Vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium and supports your immune and mental health. Since the sun is a key source of this “sunshine vitamin”, it might get harder for your body to access this key building block for your health during the cloudy, cold months. Vitamin C is another smart supplement to add to your routine, as it is a powerful antioxidant and can strengthen your body’s immune defenses during cold and flu season. Always consult a doctor before adding any supplement to your daily health routine.
2) Embrace the fall colors in your diet. Foods that reflect the season’s colors are extremely beneficial to our bodies during this time of year. Bright orange veggies, like pumpkins, for example, are nutrient-rich and full of immune-boosting vitamin A. White root vegetables are high in allicin which can reduce blood sugar and has strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Plus, eating in-season produce tends to be fresher and tastier!
3) The CDC recommends getting a once-a-year flu vaccine by the end of October to reduce the chance of flu illness, extra doctor visits, missing work or school, and passing the illness to family and friends. Talk to your doctor before getting the flu shot; they can advise what is best for your health, as well as point you in the direction of low-cost or even free vaccine options.
4) Get ready for daylight savings time by sticking to a routine. Getting enough sleep helps maintain a healthy mood, immune system, and cardiovascular system. Longer periods of darkness as the days get shorter can make you feel sluggish and tired, so sticking to a regular bedtime routine with seven to nine hours of sleep can help combat this.
5) Take care of your skin by drinking lots of water and wearing SPF daily. During colder months, it's common for our bodies to lose fluids while it works to keep our temperature regulated. Upping H20 intake can help fight dehydration in not just your body, but for your skin as well. In addition to hydration, continuing to protect your skin from sun exposure with SPF should be continued throughout the fall and winter months.
6) Keep incorporating handwashing into your daily routine. This hygiene step has been extra important during the Covid-19 pandemic and should continue throughout the cold and flu season. Keeping your hands clean throughout the day can help prevent the passing of germs and viruses that could make us, or our family and friends, sick.
7) According to the CDC, physical activity plays a key role in lowering your risk of health issues, in addition to maintaining healthy weight management and healthy mental wellbeing. Indoor activities like yoga, online exercise classes, and Pilates are all great exercise options when you don’t want to face the cold outdoors. If you don’t mind the chilly weather, take advantage of the beautiful fall colors and get some exercise while kayaking, hiking a trail, or even just doing yard work.
Prioritizing your mental and physical health as the temperature drops can help you feel your best during the autumn season. Self-care like a healthy diet, getting enough vitamins, exercise, and healthcare are all important to keep yourself and your loved ones healthy and happy this fall. Check back with Kindcare during winter for more health tips!