Common Sense Ways to Stay Healthy
It’s winter. The wind is colder, the days are shorter, you may even have snow and ice from time to time. My children hope every year that we will get snow, sometimes I wish for just a little snow too (we get rain during the winter in Florida, but I haven’t snow in central Florida since 1978 when I was a little girl).
As moms, we want our families to stay healthy, especially in the winter time when it’s easier to spread sick germs because we stay inside more. Here are 7 common sense ways to help keep you and your family healthy this winter and all year.
Note: this post is not intended to include medical advice. If you are ill, you should seek medical treatment from a qualified medical professional. These tips are common sense ideas to help you prevent illness.
7 Secrets to Help You and Your Family Stay Healthy
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Take time to enjoy life. Spend a few minutes with your family telling fun stories from your day. Take time to laugh every day. Have you ever noticed how laughing just makes you feel better? According to the Mayo Clinic, laughter causes a response in your body to reduce stress, stimulate your organs, relieve pain and much more.
Laughing will help you reduce stress. Too much stress decreases your bodies’ natural immune system. When you feel overwhelmed and stressed, smile and remember all the wonderful things you have in your life. If you need to a fun time as a family, watch a funny family movie together like Home or Inside Out.
Wash Your Hands
Washing your hands frequently is important to stopping the spread of colds, viruses and flus. Wash your hands frequently and especially when you have been exposed to anything that might have germs.
It’s also a good habit to remind your children to keep their hands away from their face. Touching your nose or putting your fingers or hands in your mouth after you have touched germy toys and tables spreads germs quickly among children.
Always Carry a “handitizer” with You
When my middle daughter was younger, she did not say hand sanitizer, she renamed it to “handitizer”. Since it was such a cute name, we still call it a “handitizer” at our house today. For the times when you are out and about and you need to wash your hands quickly, keep a purse sized “handitizer” with you.
A “handitizer” is perfect to quickly remove germs, but don’t over use them. Because they are mostly rubbing alcohol, overuse will cause your hands to get dry, especially in the winter.
Think before you touch things when you are out in public, shopping cart handles are covered in germs. Use your own pen when you checkout (don’t use the pen the cashier hands you too many people have touched it today). Don’t forget that money is covered in germs too! If you get cash back or pay with cash, do a quick “handiziter” to kill the germs.
Exercise and Be Active
Being active and exercising is a great way to stay healthy all year. Exercise helps increase your bodies natural immune system. If it’s too cold to exercise outside, include some indoor activities like a walking DVD with Leslie Sansone (my favorite).
Increase Your Vitamins
You can increase your vitamins by just eating more fruits and vegetables. Vitamin C is great to help improve your immune system. Try adding more broccoli, oranges, dark green leafy vegetables, and berries.
You can make small differences every day by adding more fruits or vegetables to every meal.
Use Nasal Saline
During the winter, nasal passages get dry and irritated. Use nasal saline to reduce irritation and inflammation in the nose.
Reduce Sugar Intake
It’s always a good ideas to reduce and limit your sugar intake. Viruses love sugar. If you feel a cold or flu coming on, it’s best to reduce sugar intake.
For me eliminating sugar would be impossible (I don’t think I will ever give up my sweet tea), but I can make simple trades such as less sweet tea and more water. You can also reduce sugar by reducing sugary snacks and processed foods that contain corn syrup.
What’s your best tip for staying healthy in the winter?