Now is the time to wrap up warm and insulate our homes, as the winter season is finally upon us.
By taking these (relatively) simple steps, you will do much to protect your health this winter. Of course, you don’t need us to remind you of that fact.
Still, while you already know the health risks associated with the chillier temperatures – colds and viruses, frostbite, pneumonia – there might be other health risks that you haven’t considered.
Here are just a few.
Risk #1: Weight gain
The colder it is outside, the less likely you are to exercise. And with an increased amount of time living a sedentary lifestyle, the more likely you are to put on weight. While a little bit of extra fat is expected at this time of year anyway – you will be eating more during the Christmas period – you should still take (literal) steps to maintain a healthy weight.
If you don’t, you put yourself at risk of health issues associated with weight gain and obesity, including type-2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and kidney disease. You can learn more in the previously linked article. So, make an effort to exercise each day, either by wrapping up warm and going for a walk, or by working out at home.
Go easy on the food you eat too, as the next point will give you a further incentive.
Risk #2: Dental problems
We’re sure your dentist is a lovely person, but do you really want to spend a lot of time with him (or her) during the Christmas period?
You might be forced to if you indulge yourself with chocolate, alcohol, cakes, and other sweet food and drink items over the winter period. Again, thanks to Christmas, you will be more inclined to indulge in such ways, but as far as your teeth are concerned, you should cut back on your sugar quotient. Instead, look for healthy alternatives, such as low-sugar drinks and protein snacks, as you will protect your teeth if you do.
Consider the same during those long nights in front of the fire when you will be more prone to comfort eating due to exercising less and the next point on this short list. But if you do indulge a little too much, be sure to brush and floss more regularly to save yourself both the physical and the financial pain of a tooth cavity.
Risk #3: Depression
Thanks to the dark nights, the lack of sun, and the reduced opportunities for exercise and (until Christmas arrives) social interactions, many people do feel depressed at this time of year. If you have ever felt low during the winter, you might now know the reasons why.
Some people suffer from seasonal affective disorder, while others simply get worn down by the changes in their lifestyles. To protect yourself from feelings of depression, do what you can to help yourself. Spend as much time in the sun before it goes down. Make an effort to exercise more during the day. Be with people instead of isolating yourself.
And as we have already suggested, eat a healthier diet, as this will also do much to boost your mental state and energy levels.
Thanks for reading, and happy (healthy) winter!