How do I boost my immune system in winter? 5 tips for your health
Winter is here and, in addition to the pandemic, it brings cloudy days and cold temperatures. It is difficult for all of us to look forward to a comfortable start to the new year at this time, and it is hard on the mind. It is all the more important to fight against this gloomy mood and not to cower like a bear in its cave!
Because what is good for the body is balm for the soul.
We have prepared five tips for you on how to get through the winter frugally through physical activities.
1. Soak up the sun
It's not just the cold weather and the circumstances of the current corona measures that keep our mood depressed. We lack variety in our daily routine, not to mention our social contacts. Motivation leaves us, but inertia stays with us. And who is to blame for our misery? Our hormones.
Due to the shortened hours of sunshine during the winter days, our body secretes more melatonin, or "sleep hormone".
Taking a walk on the weekend or during your lunch breaks will help you get some sun and reduce melatonin production. Sunshine causes your body to produce vitamin D. It strengthens the immune system, lifts your spirits and ensures strong bones and teeth. Vitamin D deficiency manifests itself in hair loss, muscle weakness/pain, and can also lead to increased susceptibility to infection.
So get out in the sun!
2. Balanced diet
Balanced meals are the be-all and end-all in winter. It ensures a strong immune system and keeps us active and fit through cold days of the year. Therefore, it is important to consume vitamins and minerals in the form of fruits and vegetables to avoid deficiencies.
You can gain additional fiber by eating various winter vegetables, such as cabbage.
By taking nuts, you get the also important vitamin E, which ensures a good defense.
3. Friend or foe? The couch.
Follow your New Year's resolutions and stay active instead of lying on the couch or in bed. Of course, it's tempting to wrap yourself up in a warm and cozy blanket while watching your favorite TV show. But you won't be doing your mood any favors.
You should rather go outdoors and do some sports. Because during sports, the body releases happiness hormones such as dopamine and senatorin. They belong to the neurotransmitters and ensure a balanced emotional state and influence our mental performance.
Too little serotonin in the circulation, can lead to a significant disturbance of the sleep rhythm. A dopamine deficiency manifests itself as a lack of motivation, listlessness, and in some cases, it can lead to depression.
You can prevent a lack of production of these hormones by exercising. At the same time, the body reduces the stress hormone cortisol.
Be sure to warm up well beforehand so as not to overstretch your muscles as well as vision. In sub-zero temperatures, it is recommended to breathe through your nose. This preheats the air when you breathe in and protects the bronchial tubes from the icy air.
4. Spoil your skin!
Winter does not offer the best conditions for our skin. Outdoors in the fresh air, it is irritated by the cold, while indoors the dry air from the heating system causes problems.
Due to the constant change between warm and cold, the skin loses moisture.
You can compensate for this loss by drinking enough fluids - water or unsweetened fruit and herbal teas. A greasy body lotion/cream helps against a dry skin surface. In the sun, it is recommended to use a cream with a high sun protection factor, as harmful UV rays are reflected by the white snow and can cause skin irritation despite the cold.
5. Fresh air against dry breathways
Our mucous membranes provide the body's own protective shield against viruses and foreign bodies. If they are not sufficiently moisturized, they dry out, allowing pathogens easy access to our bodies. For viruses, the dry/warm heating air also provides perfect conditions to preserve themselves and remain infectious.
Regular airing and extensive walks help with stuffy heating air and prevent your mucous membranes from drying out.
In addition to these measures, you should also defiantly follow the hygiene rules and regularly wash your hands, wear a mask and keep a safe distance.
Disclaimer: We would like to point out that the information listed is for general guidance. Every person has an individually strong immune system and reacts differently accordingly. Before you act, talk to your family doctor. Act on your own responsibility and take care of your health!