A guide to keeping warm this winter

Claire Small's picture
Authored by Claire Small
Posted Wednesday, October 30, 2019 - 12:29pm

Now that the winter months are approaching, you may be worried about the bitter cold spells that could put your health at risk. The mistake many people make is not thinking too deeply about their health until something happens, however, it would be wise to be well-prepared so you’re at a much lower risk of contracting an illness. Anyone can be affected by the cold, but those most at risk include the elderly, pregnant women or those with ongoing illnesses.

Don’t wait until your health starts to deteriorate before you put strategies in place to keep safe this winter. Take a look at some of the top tips for maintaining your health below:

1. Get a good night’s sleep

Many of us take our sleep for granted, however, not getting enough sleep can have major impacts on our health. On average, adults should be getting at least 7-9 hours’ sleep every night in order to function well the following day. Not only that, but poor sleep can also have an effect on the immune system, which makes us more vulnerable to contracting illnesses such as cold and flu viruses.

Get your body into a routine, so you’re drifting off to sleep and waking up at the same time every day, to prevent constantly awakening during the night.

You could also invest in Snoozzzy weighted blankets, which are filled with non-toxic beads to provide deep pressure on the body and promote relaxation by boosting the sleep-inducing hormone.

2. Eat well

Although all we want to do is sit in front of the fireplace and indulge in junk food on frosty evenings, this is doing nothing for maintaining your health.

You should be eating a well-balanced diet with at least five portions of fruit and vegetables each day, as well as fibre, protein fats, carbohydrates, and dairy to boost the immune system and help you fight those dreaded winter illnesses. 

3. Washing your hands regularly

Did you know that 80% of germs are spread by skin-on-skin contact? You should make it your priority to wash your hands on a regular basis, especially after you have been in a public place, after using the toilet, and before you touch food. If you’re worried about hygiene while out and about, it would be worth carrying around a hand sanitizer in case you don’t have access to hand-washing facilities.

4. Flu vaccine

For those who have a very low immune system, contracting the flu can be extremely serious. If you’re generally healthy, it should clear up on its own in a matter of a week, however, it can go on to cause serious health complications such as pneumonia or bronchitis if you already suffer from a chronic illness, are pregnant or elderly.

If you are deemed to be at a significantly high risk of contracting the flu, you may be offered a free flu vaccine by the NHS. It is advisable to accept the offer if you fall into any of the categories already mentioned above.