Contributed by: Rachana Arya
Did you know that sedentary lifestyle diseases are more common in winters? Everyone knows that winter is also the season of augmentation in respiratory infections and joint pains (for people of a certain age), but that isn’t the only thing to be concerned about.
A big chill can turn into a dangerous problem and have a greater impact on your health than you may believe, experts say.
Winters are also notorious for the unusually high occurrence of illnesses, including sudden deaths that tend to increase rapidly at the onset of winters and peak around New Year’s Day.
The colder months lead to enhanced consumption of high-calorie food. The richness and abundance of food available during the holidays, along with the natural desire to eat just a little bit more, leads to many people overindulging.
Many people gain weight during the holidays because of the richness and variety of food, as well as the natural urge to eat just a ‘little extra.’
You could think that a modest weight gain is okay, but if the weight gain is uncontrolled, it might lead to chronic illnesses.
In addition, cold weather spurs an array of physical and lifestyle changes. Winters keep people indoors, which can lead to a lack of activity and make people more prone to illness.
When people go to a state of being sedentary to avoid the cold, it can lead to not just respiratory illnesses and an influx of viruses, but also cause an increase in cardiovascular events.
The good news, however, is that they are preventable, and all you have to do is follow a few simple principles to have a healthy and enjoyable winter season full of festivities, get-togethers, and so on.
Here are a few tips to help you stay healthy despite the weather:
Increase vitamin C intake
Increase the intake of vitamin C-rich meals, which helps to improve the immune system and maintain the body in good shape.
To enhance the immune system when it’s super cold, include whole grains, lean meats, fish, poultry, legumes, nuts & seeds, herbs & spices, as well as lots of fresh fruits and vegetables. Also, limit intake of high-calorie winter treats.
Opt for warm beverages
Winter is when you are at risk of contracting viral and bacterial infections. Takin warm soothing beverages can not only warm up your body quickly but also boost your immunity.
That said, it is important that you stay off calorie-dense beverages such as rich hot chocolate or a sugary latte.
Follow an exercise regimen
Regular exercise is essential for staying fit during the cold months.
To improve physical activity, engage in yoga, jogging, cycling etc. on a daily basis to strengthen your immune system and improve your protection against seasonal illnesses like the flu and cold.
However, if you have asthma, heart difficulties, or Raynaud’s disease (a rare blood vessels disorder), consult your doctor first to discuss any extra precautions you need to take based on your condition or medications.
When you’re feeling worried, take a break and do something that will distract you from your worries.
This allows your stress response system to recover. Taking efforts to manage your stress in a healthy way, reducing your workload, and sleeping through the night will all help you do this.
Keep an eye on pre-existing medical conditions
Avoid smoking & drinking
Avoid excessive consumption of alcohol or tobacco. The cardiac muscles are poisoned by alcohol.
It can cause Atrial Fibrillation, which is a type of irregular heart rhythm. Smoking can exacerbate heart and respiratory diseases.
Warm clothes are your best friends
Layer up and wear sweaters, jackets, and warmers to keep your body warm and help your body regulate its temperature effectively.
Make sure your outer layer of clothing is tightly knit and, ideally, windproof.
Prevention is better than cure
Lastly, as a preventive measure, make regular health check-ups a habit. Early detection can assist you in staying on top of any underlying problems.
Bacterial development is aided by the cloudy climate and lack of sunshine.
So it is critical to keep track of one’s blood pressure, heart rate, and blood sugar level, as well as visit a doctor if there are any significant fluctuations.