Spring clean your health
It’s spring! That means that new beginnings are afoot in nature. (Yes, you may have noticed your sinus allergies acting up, but it is a small price to pay for the warmer weather and beautiful flowers!)
Regardless, the festive season is on the way, and you want to be in tip-top shape for all the fun, holiday activities.
But, the winter cold may have forced you into some unhealthy habits. That’s okay! It’s never too late to get back on track and spring clean your health.
Spring clean your home
Yes, spring is a time for cleaning, and a clean home is a healthy environment. In winter, our windows are closed and the thick blankets and curtains are dragged from the cupboard and kept up for three or four months. Remove the linen and give it a thorough wash! Even if you don’t wash them, hang them out anyway! It’s a good move to hang them out on the line, as this will remove any odours and dust!
Empty out the fridge and pantry of all expired, spoiled or dodgy foods and dispose of them accordingly. Throw some detergent in the outside drains and on the front tarmac of your home to clean the bacteria away.
Be sure to clean out your medicine cabinet too. It’s time to restock with fresh supplies.
Winter weight gain is very real. When humans are cold, they tend to eat more comfort food. A 2005 study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that study participants consumed an average of 86 calories more each day in the colder months of the year.
A different study in the European Journal of Epidemiology also found people consumed more calories in colder months and felt hungrier even though they have been eating larger meals, reports My Fitness Pal Blog. Researchers attribute this to both colder temperatures and changing circadian rhythms.
Food cravings hardly ever have you searching the pantry for fruits and veggies. Now that you have more control over your diet, choose healthier options and steer clear of any processed or sugary foods as much as possible.
Go outside and exercise
Perhaps the most important of all, go and get some of that good old vitamin D.
Vitamin D, or the sunshine vitamin, is produced by the body as a response to sun exposure.
Medical New Today explains that having enough vitamin D is important for maintaining healthy bones and teeth; protection against a range of conditions such as cancer, type 1 diabetes, and multiple sclerosis.
It can also be consumed in food or supplements.
Winter is limiting when it comes to movement, and most families find themselves sedentary in the home, watching TV and munching on snacks. Go for a walk or jog, take the kids to the park or do anything that gets the heart pumping and joints moving!
Two litres a day is easy to achieve if you get a water bottle that you can carry around with you, or set your phone alarm to sound each hour, to remind you to hydrate!
As the weather gets warmer, it’s important to drink fluids to prevent dehydration.
A study from the University of Illinois suggests that simply increasing plain water consumption by one to three cups a day could decrease calorie intake by 68 to 205 calories a day. But there are many more benefits than weight loss, including healthier skin, proper digestion and controlling blood pressure.
Water literally spring cleans the toxins from the body.