The cold season is here, which means shorter days, cooler nights, and perhaps waning motivation.
But before you go into 'hibernation mode', we collated some handy winter wellness tips from some of New Zealand's top insurers - to help you kick your immune system into gear and chase away the winter blues.
Don't stress out
Asteron points out that taking some time out for rest and relaxation is important: research shows that people who are under severe stress can be more vulnerable to colds and flu.
De-stressing might be something as simple as meditating, practising breathing techniques, getting an eight-hour 'beauty sleep' each night, or unplugging from your devices even just for a couple of hours each day.
Connect with others
With the barbecue stored away and rain washing over the windows, entertaining friends and family may not be high on your to-do list. How about snuggling up on the couch with a good book or a new TV series, instead?
However, as Fidelity Life noted here, don't forget that finding ways to connect with others is crucial at any time of the year, whether it's a team lunch at work or a hearty dinner with your loved ones.
Try something new
As relaxing as it can be, staying holed up indoors can be isolating after a while. That's why winter can be a great time for picking up a new hobby or learning new things, according to Southern Cross.
What would you like to pencil in? A painting class or a photography course? A cooking class? A new language? Or perhaps, some volunteer work? By trying new experiences, not only will time pass swiftly, but the time you spend will reward you.
We all know how good exercising is for our body, mind and soul... and yet, working out during winter can be a real challenge. Mornings and evenings are dark. The air is chilly, and it may rain anytime.
But, did you know that exercising in the cold is more effective than exercising in warmer temperatures? Southern Cross reports that you can burn up to 50% more calories in winter, as your body has to work harder to stay warm.
Don't feel like going outside? Understandable: here are some rainy-day exercises you can try in the comfort of your home.
You know the drill - healthy eating is vital for a good immune system. So make sure your menu includes a fair share of vegetables, fruits, warming foods, and nutrients like zinc, vitamin C, and importantly, vitamin D.
Vitamin D is mostly produced by our body when exposed to sunlight. So, less sun means less vitamin D - and as nib reminds us here , that can lead to less protection from the flu. The good news? Vitamin D can be found in supplements and some foods, like oily fish, red meat, egg yolks, and breakfast cereals.
Insurance protection for all seasons of life
- Southern Cross - Winter Wellness
- Southern Cross - Rainy day exercises
- Asteron Life - Natural Ways to help stay well over winter
- Asteron Life - Winter pick-me-up: try this beautiful beetroot salad recipe
- Fidelity Life - Stay well this winter
- AIA - Got the flu? Here's what to do
- nib - How to fight the flu this winter
Disclaimer: Please note that the content provided in this article is intended as an overview and as general information only. While care is taken to ensure accuracy and reliability, the information provided is subject to continuous change and may not reflect current developments or address your situation. Before making any decisions based on the information provided in this article, please use your discretion and seek independent guidance.