5 Secrets to Family Health This Winter

The weather is turning colder, and the days are getting shorter. As the temperatures drop, flu viruses and colds make the rounds each year, which means that getting sick is practically unavoidable. What’s more, most people hit by winter illnesses are contagious before symptoms emerge. However, preparing for illnesses can help prevent them from snowballing into something worse. Accordingly, several actions can help fend off germs to help keep your family as healthy as possible this winter.

Winterizing Your Family

While it’s virtually inevitable that someone in your family will experience an illness this winter regardless of well-intended prevention measures, best practices recommend employing a variety of germ-fighting strategies. Keep reading to discover the top five secrets that can help your family stay healthy and happy this winter.

  1. Avoid immunity blasters. The carbohydrates found in sugar can suppress the immune response for up to five hours. Simple sugars reduce white blood cells, rendering an inability to protect against bacterial and viral infections. For instance, the sugar levels in orange juice surpass those of most other fruit juices. Refined sugars can also produce negative moods.
  2. Revolutionize the lunchbox. Think outside the traditional lunchbox and keep it simple to escape the lunchtime rut. Pack several healthy and small choices that combine to create a whole meal by considering three or four complementary ingredients, such as a handful of crackers, cherry tomatoes, grapes, sliced meats and chunks of cheese.
  3. Enjoy the cold. Nature Deficit Disorder is a result of spending too much time inside. The therapeutic effects of spending time outside include a reduction in anxiety, obesity, and depression. In fact, routine exposure to allergens can help build a healthy immune system.
  4. Institute playdates for everyone. Just as children enjoy playdates, adults also need to spend time with friends. Humans were not meant to hibernate. Set aside time to grab lunch with a co-worker or meet a friend at the gym. Establishing social routines are powerful mood enhancers. Social bonding creates a sense of closeness with others that can boost endorphins and suppress serotonin.
  5. Perform a sleep check. Lack of sleep is a national epidemic, and the consequence can be severe. Sleep deprivation can affect academic achievement and cognitive skills, and it is linked to obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. Make sleep a priority by creating an environment that values sleep and is conducive to it by establishing a sleep routine for everyone.

Everyone braces for allergies and sickness when fall arrives because that is when adults and children are more susceptible to respiratory illnesses. It’s vital to provide protection for your lungs in the cold winter months as shown in this infographic.

An infographic about respiratory health during fall and winter by the University of Cincinnati's respiratory therapy program.<br />
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<p><a href=University of Cincinnati Respiratory Therapy Program

Boosting Immunity Naturally

The immune system defends against disease-causing microorganisms. To function properly, it requires harmony and balance. The first line of defense is adopting a healthy lifestyle, such as quitting smoking, eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, controlling your blood pressure, and getting adequate sleep. The immune system and your entire body function better when healthy-living strategies bolster and shield them from environmental assaults.

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