Winter Wellness and Wellbeing

December 2012, Xtend-Life Expert

Summary

It is winter in the northern hemisphere and it's often a season when colds and flu spread throughout communities. The cold dry air can also affect the appearance of your skin. Here are some tips that will help you stay healthy throughout the winter months, while still maintaining vibrant younger-looking skin.

It is winter in the northern hemisphere and it's often a season when colds and flu spread throughout communities. The cold dry air can also affect the appearance of your skin. Here are some tips that will help you stay healthy throughout the winter months, while still maintaining vibrant younger-looking skin.

How to Stay Healthy during the Winter Months?

You should never keep yourself confined to your room during the winter months; try to go out regularly. However, you must make sure that you are wrapped up well before going outside during this time of the year. Ideally, you should wear garments (pullovers or sweaters) made from wool... wool provides more warmth than other fabrics this is because wool is a lot warmer compared to an acrylic or cotton.

The skin around your ankles and wrists is much thinner than other parts of your body and in these areas the blood flows much closer to the surface. Thus, we tend to lose significant amount of heat from these parts of the body. Covering up the wrists with full-sleeve jumpers or gloves and the ankles with socks or stockings will prevent this loss of body heat and keep you warm.

Did you know that as much as 70 percent of heat loss from our body occurs through our head? You should always keep your head covered when going out into any cold environment.

Keeping your feet warm is something that some people can struggle with in the winter months, resulting in them feeling even more cold and ultimately causing irritability. If you feel that your feet are getting cold after spending some time outside, pamper yourself with a mustard footbath as soon as you return home. It may sound strange but it works. Take a bowl of lukewarm water and add 1 tablespoon mustard powder (you can also use crushed seeds of mustard seeds) to it. Place your feet in this mustard solution and wait for 5 to 10 minutes. Take your feet out and dry them carefully; once fully dry cover them up using a blanket or wear a pair of clean woollen socks.

Exercising during the Winter Months

If you want to get the most from your winter workouts, you should plan your exercising schedule carefully. Like any other season, fitness experts still recommend exercising outside during the winter months. However, there are certain guidelines that you must follow if you prefer exercising outside during winter. Below we have listed those guidelines:

  • Before starting your actual workout session, be sure to do a few warm-up exercises first. Cold temperatures may cause muscle tightness, which can make our the muscles more susceptible to injuries. Thus, getting the muscles warmed up before starting any physical activities is extremely important.
  • You should also wear the right kind of clothing while exercising outside during the winter months. Covering up your body with several layers of light clothing is an effective way of staying warm and also allows you to remove one or two layers if you feel too warm while working out. The clothing layer that stays in contact with our skin must have the ability to move moisture away. The topmost layer, on the other hand, should be both water and wind resistant.
  • Drink enough water before and after the exercising session. Staying hydrated while working out is just as important during winter as it is during summer.

Dietary Guidelines You Should Follow during the Winter Months

During winter, increasing your protein intake can help promote muscle growth post-exercise and more muscle equates to a warmer body.

Consume as much green and leafy vegetables as possible; they contain all the essential minerals and vitamins required for a healthier body. Examples include spinach, lettuce, kale etc.

Consume seasonal fruits (fruits grown naturally during winter) such as Kiwifruit, oranges, pomegranates etc.

Skin Care during the Winter Months

Many people enjoy taking hot showers or baths during the cold months. This helps keep our body warm and also makes our skin soft and supple. However, you should make sure that the water is not too hot. If the water you use for bathing, showering or washing your face is extremely hot, it might end up breaking your capillaries and can even break down your skin's lipid barriers. This will cause excessive moisture loss and will make your skin flaky and dry.

To keep your skin healthy and glowing in winter, you must clean it using a gentle cleanser. Avoid using strong alcohol based skin cleansers; this is because those strong cleansers can further weaken your skin's balance and worsen its condition.

During the winter months, you will need to moisturize your skin more frequently, using moisturizers like those found in our Xtend-Life skincare range is great way to give your skin the nourishment and care it deserves.

As mentioned earlier, winter is the time when many people get affected by colds and flu. To prevent the sniffles, you need to boost your immunity effectively and ideally, as naturally as possible. An effective natural way of strengthening your immune system is by taking our Total Balance, Omega 3 / DHA fish oil products and Immu-Stay throughout the winter months. A balanced diet and regular exercise can also help boost your immunity.

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