It is that time of year again, the winter bugs are in full force, so what are you going to do about it?
Read this to find out how to stay ahead of the game rather than doing nothing and waiting for the symptoms of sickness to strike.
INTERNAL FACTORS IMPACTING WINTER HEALTH
You may find you need more sleep through these winter months. That is OK, listen to what your body needs. Bears go into hibernation, humans don't quite go that far under, but we do need more sleep.
The earth has seasons to keep the planet turning. It has rhythms and routines. Winter is a time for some things to go to sleep and rest so they can bloom again come spring and summer.
The human body goes through those seasons too, in summer people are a lot more social, don't sleep as much and are more active. Winter is time to recharge (don't use this as an excuse to be lazy) just be sure to rest adequately.
Eliminate things that make you feel stressed or things that keep you "too busy". Introduce more of what relaxes your mind, body and soul. If your body is in fight and flight mode you cannot fight off the bugs well as your immune system is suppressed.
While it is cooler, you are less likely to feel thirsty. But you are most likely spending more time indoors with heating that is sucking moisture out of your body. Drink hot water, cold water, lemon water, I don't care how you do it. Just drink more water.
This should go without saying, but some people are not aware that regular Chiropractic adjustments can help the immune system manage winter bugs. Research has suggested the regular Chiropractic care actually boosts the immune system. It makes sense as Chiropractic is about making sure you and your body is able to function optimally.
IMMUNE SYSTEM SUPPORT:
Make sure you are supporting your immune system internally, this means eating well. If you have questions about nutrition then Chantal Cuthers at Nutrition by Chantal is your woman.
Quality supplements at this time of year are also a good idea. If you have questions about these then ask next time you are in. We can chat over a system review to see what would benefit you personally.
In the mean time, make sure you are taking a quality Vitamin C at least!
I stock all you will need for winter supplements, so don't hesitate to ask about them.
Movement of the body is good for our mind, body and soul. Remember that regular movement can help keep the immune system strong. Just listen to your body, don't over do it in these colder months and be sure to warm up, warm down and stretch adequately.
IF YOU DO GET SICK:
REST, HYDRATE, EAT WELL and NURTURE your body. Your body needs rest and sleep to repair. If you are up and about while sick your body is having to take energy AWAY from the fighting immune system and put it into moving your body around. So resting early on when you feel something coming on can get on top of it and avoid 4 days in bed feeling miserable.
Please be aware that antibiotics cannot cure a VIRUS. Your body cures a virus, and you can help it do that by resting, sleeping, and nurturing your body with good food.
EXTERNAL FACTORS IMPACTING WINTER HEALTH
A house needs to breathe, just like you. If you live in a house that is damp or susceptible to mould you MUST make sure you are opening your house through the day to create movement of air.
Air movement decreases mould's ability to grow. Ventilation system's (such as DVS, HRV etc) are also helpful, otherwise you could be using a dehumidifier.
If you house is new, dry and double glazed then be aware you still need airflow through the house. Open a window, especially in the bedroom during the day to allow fresh air to replace the air you have been breathing all night.
DRESS APPROPRIATELY to keep your core, head and feet warm:
In Auckland it is often hard to dress to the conditions as the change every 5 minutes, so dress using layers. It means you can take a vest off, or put a scarf on if you are feeling warmer or cooler.
Being hot one second indoors and freezing the next second when you go outside means your body is wasting energy on keeping your core temperature steady. That is wasted energy, you could be putting that energy towards keeping your immune system fighting off bugs.
Also don't forget about your feet and head. These areas are great sources of heat loss, so if you are watching the kids rugby in the cold each weekend be sure to double sock if need be and wear a warm hat.
REMOVE STRESSFUL EXTERNAL ENVIRONMENTS:
Don't want to go to an event you feel obligated to attend? Don't go. By making yourself do something your heart and soul is not engaged with you are triggering fight and flight mode which suppresses your immune system, meaning your body is more susceptible to picking up bugs.
You got this, winter come at us!
Hi. My name is Ainslee, I am a chiropractor and wellness extraordinaire. My passion is getting people well and keeping them that way.