Winter is indeed here. With more long dark and cold days ahead, it is important to know what you can do to stay warm, happy and healthy over the coming months. talkhealth want to give you a few of our winter health and lifestyle hacks to help you out this winter. Further to that, we want to hear YOUR winter tips and tricks that you use during the colder months. Tell us in this survey what your number one winter tip is, and you will be entered into a prize draw to win 1 of 25 breathalysers, just in time for Christmas.
And now onto the tips:
1) Using hand sanitiser to de-ice your car: Very often, we find ourselves in a rush to leave the house in the morning, but are met with an icy windscreen. If you’re without any de-icer, your trusty hand sanitiser may just do the trick. The alcohol will melt the ice leaving your windscreen free and clear.
2) Make use of that heat: After you have cooked dinner, your oven still retains heat for a little while. Rather than shutting that heat away, leave the oven door open and use the last of that warm air (just make sure it’s switched off first!)
3) Locating a mystery draft: Keep feeling a draft but can’t quite put your finger on where it’s coming from? Take a candle and run it around the edges of your windows and doors – when the flame starts to flicker you will have found your draft! Then you can get insulating.
4) Ditch the electric blankets for hot water bottles: Tired of getting into a cold bed at the end of the day? Pop a hot water bottle at the foot of your bed 30 minutes before going to bed. It will keep your bed warm until morning, without racking up a huge electricity bill right before Christmas (electric blankets – we’re looking at you).
5) Bed time preparation: When you get in from a long day in work, the last thing you want is to put on cold PJ’s. Pop your pyjamas on the radiator when you leave the house. If your heating is on a timer to come on by the time you come home, your PJ’s should be nice and toasty for you to slip on soon after getting home.
1) The power of vitamin D: Your body naturally produces vitamin D during the summer months when the sun is at its strongest. In winter however it tends to be in short supply. Vitamin D is important for good health, growth and for maintaining bone strength. Eat foods rich in vitamin D (Cod Liver Oil, Oily fish such as trout and salmon, wholegrain cereals, certain dairy products). If you fear that you might be at risk of being vitamin D deficient, please do remember to visit your GP for a test and some advice.
2) The dreaded cold sores: Winter weather can cause many of us to feel a bit run down. For those of us who live with cold sores, the winter months can be a breeding ground for the little blighters. If you do find yourself with a cold sore blister, this at home remedy could help. When it is developing phase, pop some used teabags into the fridge to cool. Put the cold teabags on your cold sore for around 30 to 45 minutes. The cooling sensation will lessen the swelling of the blister, while the moisture of the teabag will stop the skin from drying out and splitting, therefore avoiding the ‘sore’ part of the cold sore.
3) Green tea for flu: For many of us, winter is a difficult time for staying healthy. With bugs and sore throats and flu it’s hard to remain fighting fit. By adding a mug of green tea into your morning routine you could stave off any nasty bugs. As it is an antioxidant, it boosts your immune system, helping you fight off a cold quickly, or avoiding it altogether.
4) Get to bed early: Not a hack as such, but an important one to remember all the same. Those who get less than 7 hours of sleep a night are almost 3 times as likely to develop a cold. The immune system needs at least seven hours to sleep in order to stimulate the cells to protect against a cold. Get an early night to avoid the sniffles.
5) Wonderful wool: When out and about on a cold day, it’s not uncommon for people to go from one extreme temperature to another throughout the day. Central heating in work, on your commute and in shops can mean that you are freezing one minute and boiling the next. Ditch the cotton tops for a woolly top. Cotton tops can often stay wet if you sweat in them, which can lead to you getting a chill when you go back out in the cold. Wool absorbs moisture, including sweat, making it easier for the body to regulate its temperature.
Now over to you, tell us your winter life hack in this survey, and feel free to share it in the comments section below. 25 winners will be selected at random after the closing date on Wednesday 14th December – so don’t wait – get involved.