The word wintertime is usually synonymous with holidays, hot chocolate and family love. While it is the most wonderful time of the year, it can also be the most challenging. Consider yourself to be lucky if you happen to live in an area that stays consistent, temperature-wise, all year long. Most people do not have that luxury and those that do not should take special care of themselves in cold weather.
One of the most important things that you can do during this time is to change your mind set. What you are used to doing in the summer or fall will usually not work for wintertime temperatures. Making simple changes to prepare your body for the cold weather can help increase your quality of life during this time. But don’t worry! Here are some easy tips to help you stay healthy and in optimum condition during this time for the year.
Skincare is Important
Your skin is the largest organ of your body. It is essential that proper care of your skin is taken because the condition of your skin is directly related to your comfort level. The harsh, dry atmosphere of the wintertime can have negative effects on your skin. Left alone in this type of weather, your skin will experience dryness and flakiness. Without proper moisture, dry skin is itchy irritated and uncomfortable. Here are some easy tips to help you prevent this from happening to you.
The best time to moisturize your skin is after your skin is damp when you exit the shower. Rubbing lotion or body oil on damp skin seals the moisture into your skin, keeping it soft and supple. It is also a good idea to keep a small bottle of lotion with you at all times to be used after you wash your hands throughout the day. Keeping your skin supple will prevent uncomfortable tightness of dry skin, as well as stop premature wrinkles.
Modify your shower habits
Having smart shower habits gives you a good head start on having nice skin. On cold mornings, sometimes all you want to do is have a nice, long hot shower. But don’t do it! It may feel nice when you are in there, but once your exit, your skin will be in trouble. Long, hot showers are a recipe for dryness. Too much water on your skin will rinse away the natural oils that your body produces and will leave your skin vulnerable. The same applies to water that is too hot; all the moisture in your skin will evaporate into the atmosphere. Taking a shower with lukewarm water may not sound very appealing but it is the best option. If you must have a steaming, hot shower then keeping it to about 5 minutes long will reduce the amount of damage that is caused.
Something else to reevaluate about your shower habits is the type of soap that you use
to cleanse your body. A creamy body wash with added oils are the best option. If you prefer to use a bar of soap, those made with mostly moisturizers are the best option.
Your face is special
Your face may have it the hardest in the winter because it is the part of your body that has the most exposure to the elements. The skin on your face is thinner than on the rest of your body and dries much faster so you cannot forget about it. It is a good idea to use cold cream to cleanse your face, instead of soaps, which can be drying. Keeping a moisturizing sunscreen at hand is a great idea if you plan on spending a lot of time outside.
What is on the Inside is Important, too.
Drinking water is always a good thing. Your body needs at least 5 cups a day in the wintertime. Water helps your body stay hydrated and keeps your mind sharp. One of the great things about water is that it is versatile. Five cups may sound daunting, but it does not need to be drunk at the same time. A hot cup of tea is a nice treat when its unpleasant outside, and while tea is mostly water, there are also antioxidants and flavonoids that are activated with a simple squeeze of lemon juice, making tea a healthy option as well.
As it gets cold outside, the time you spend inside of the house is increased. This also means that you are getting less Vitamin D as well, because Vitamin D is absorbed by your body from the sun. A Vitamin D supplement or even fortified milk is a great way to supply your body with this necessary nutrient.
Keep away the SAD
Seasonal Affective Disorder is very common around this time of the year. Keeping this disorder at bay is easy enough if you remain conscious of it. Following the tips that have already been outlined will keep you feeling well and having a positive attitude is very important. Take advantage of any clear, sunny days that come. Taking a short walk in some sunshine can lift your spirits and help you remember what is really important in life.
Keep your heat
Most people are told when they are young that it is important to wear layers of clothes to avoid losing your body heat. This will always be true. Wearing layers and keeping your neck and chest area protected from the cold air will help to keep you in good health. Studies show that around 50% of your body heat is lost through your head. This can be easily prevented by wearing a hat or a hood that covers your ears as well.
Wintertime is the least favorite time of the year for many people, but with the right preparation you can have a positive experience this winter. If you follow the tips and suggestions that are outlined in this article, you’re bound to have a good experience.