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Friday, December 14, 2012

“Stay Healthy this Winter”


1. Sleep Properly

"On average we sleep six-and-a-half hours a night, much less than the seven to nine hours. But in winter, we naturally sleep more, due to the longer nights. "It’s perfectly natural to adopt hibernating habits when the weather turns cold,"

2. Drink more milk

You are 80% more likely to get a cold in winter so making sure your immune system is in tip-top condition is important. Milk and dairy products such as cheese, yoghurt and fromage fraise are great sources of protein and vitamins A and B12. They're also an important source of calcium, which helps keep our bones strong. Try to go for semi-skimmed or skimmed milk, rather than full fat, and low-fat yoghurts.

 

3. Eat more fruit and vegetables

When it’s cold and dark outside it can be tempting to fill up on unhealthy comfort food, but it’s important to ensure that you still keep your diet healthy and include five portions of fruit and vegetables a day. If you find yourself craving a sugary treat, try a juicy Clementine or Satsuma instead or sweet dried fruits such as dates or raisins.

Winter vegetables such as carrots, parsnips and turnips can be roasted, mashed or made into soup for a comforting winter meal for the whole family. Explore varieties of fruit and vegetables that you may not normally eat.

 

4. Try new activities for the whole family

Don’t use the cold winter months as an excuse to stay in and lounge around. Instead, get out with the whole family to try out a new activity. Regular exercise helps to control your weight, boost your immune system and is a good way to break the tension that can build if the family is constantly cooped up inside the house.

 

5. Have a hearty breakfast

Winter is the perfect season for oatmeal. Eating a warm bowlful on a cold morning is not just a delicious way to start your day, it also helps you to boost your intake of starchy foods and fiber, which give you energy and help you to feel fuller for longer, stopping the temptation to snack mid-morning. Oats also contain lots of vital vitamins and minerals. Make your oatmeal with semi-skimmed or skimmed milk or water, and don’t add sugar or salt. Add a few dried apricots, some raisins, a sliced banana or other fruit for extra flavor.

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