We are now well into the dark winter months. January and February can be tricky for our health and energy levels, the excitement of Christmas and New year has passed, the days are cold and dark, viruses and infections are rife and our financial health has taken a beating too!
There is hope on the horizon, though. The good news is that the shortest day of the year has now passed. The days are getting longer by 2 minutes a day if you live in the northern hemisphere.
Rather than feeling as though we would like to enter hibernation until spring, there are steps we can take now to make us feel more energetic during the winter months to live life to the fullest.
To increase your energy levels in the winter, the single most important thing you should do is get outside, even for just a short walk every day. The reason our energy dips in the winter is often due to a lack of vitamin D. The main source of vitamin D for our bodies is from sunlight, so getting outside is very important. Natural daylight and fresh air also has the effect of lifting our mood and spirits, giving us a boost to our wellbeing. Winter landscapes are often stunning too.
Many of us don’t feel like exercising in the winter; an evening spent curled up with a good book in front of the fire feels a little more appealing. However, exercise is important to our overall standard of health, as is often reiterated to us by medical insurance plans that you need, to ensure that you maintain a healthy lifestyle, whatever the weather or time of year.
We are all aware of the benefits from exercise to our cardiac health, agility and weight, but we often overlook the mood enhancing benefits of exercise. When we exercise, our bodies release endorphins, which give us that post-exercise feel-good factor that is particularly important in winter.
Rather than succumb to the temptation of high carb/high fat foods in the winter, it is important to eat foods that will give you energy and boost your immune system. Citrus fruits are in season around now and they are packed with vitamin C perfect for warding off winter colds. It may be going a bit too far to suggest that you eat more salads in winter, but you can make tasty soups and stews from an array of healthy vegetables to keep you warm and satisfied.
If all else fails and your diet has gone a little awry, you could always consider taking a multivitamin supplement.
Embrace the season of winter! Every season has its high and low points, so look for the positives. If it snows, enjoy it by having fun sledding and building snowmen. If you have a passion for photography, get out to experience the amazing landscapes winter has to offer. Often in winter the wildlife around us becomes more visual. Garden birds would really benefit from food being put out for them when the ground is frozen; in return, you will enjoy watching them.
All these activities bring with them a sense of belonging and are also very grounding.