Winter is Coming
By Kate Crimmins | HealthCorps Coordinator 2017 – 2019
Cold and flu season is upon us, so how can we say goodbye to unwanted coughs and sneezes and hello to clear noses and endless energy?
There are three key health components to be mindful of, not just now, but all year round! These components are: Nutrition, Physical Fitness, and Mental Health. So as long as you are eating healthy, working out consistently, and touching base with your mental state, you are right on track to bid farewell to those seasonal sniffles!
Maybe as a kid, your parents made you take a Flintstone Vitamin every morning with breakfast. While that may have been something you did not think twice of back then, it actually played an extremely important role to supplying your body with the vitamins it needed to strengthen your immune system. Your immune system is like the army in your body that fights off any unwanted germs or illnesses. So while you may not take Flintstone Vitamins anymore, there are still many ways to get those same vitamins naturally in the foods that you eat. Look out for these Vitamins next time you’re in the grocery store:
• Vitamin C – Oranges, Sweet Potato, Bell Peppers, Kiwi, Papaya, Strawberries, Pineapple
• Vitamin A – Carrots, Leafy greens like kale/spinach/ collard greens, Cantaloupe
• Vitamin E – Nuts, seeds, vegetable oil, leafy greens
What is the first thing that comes to mind when you work out? Probably some of your initial thoughts are SWEAT. And while sweat may not always smell good, it is vital to our immune system, and keeping us healthy. When you sweat, your body is releasing the toxins in your body, and rids yourself of any extra chances of getting sick. But do not forget to hydrate! Staying active and drinking water also keeps your bodily functions on the right schedule, which helps with digestion, and ultimately helps with the release of unwanted toxins that way as well. So now that the temperature is dropping, what are ways you can stay active?
• Embrace the cold – grab some skis, snowboards, or sleds and get out there!
• Find your inner yogi, and warm up with a yoga class! There are a TON of free lessons you can find on YouTube, or even turn up the heat and sweat it out with in hot yoga class!
• Learn a dance routine! Have you mastered Beyoncé’s “Single Ladies” yet?
• Make your living room your gym! Try push-ups, mountain climbers, or crunches during those commercial breaks.
Just like it takes practice and patience to exercise your body, the same goes for your mind. You may start to experience a little cabin fever as it begins to get colder, so how can you stay mindful about your mental health?
• Do not under estimate the power of sleep! While teens/adults should be getting 7 – 9 hours of sleep every night, that is not always possible. Give your brain a rest after a long day and catch up on your zzz’s with small 20 – 30 minute catnaps after work/school.
• Be mindful while you are in school/ work and avoid potential situations where germs can be shared. So make sure to wash your hands before you eat, wipe down your laptops with anti bacterial wipes, and be sure not to share them too much with your peers!
• Be conscious about the interactions you have everyday. As it gets colder, there are higher chances that you may become a bit antisocial. Who wants to leave their blankets when it’s below freezing outside? Check in with someone you love everyday just to say hi, ask how they are, and tell them about your day.
Make sure to follow HealthCorps on Social Media to receive even more tips and tricks and watch how we are teaching individuals all over the country how to stay healthy. Now brace yourselves: winter is coming!