Cold Facts - Winter Health Tips @Universal

Keep healthy this winter by including plenty of nutritious foods. As the temperature continues to drop, people become increasingly challenged to maintain a healthy diet.  Comfort eating is common during the winter. Your LDL cholesterol levels can be directly influenced by the food you eat, with some foods naturally high in cholesterol such as eggs, high-fat meats and cheese. Make sure you also avoid eating a diet high in saturated fats or trans fats, such as deep-fried, processed or baked foods, to keep your LDL cholesterol levels low.

Regular exercise will make you feel more energetic in the winter. Being outside and taking in more sun during the daylight hours helps keep your mind sharp and relieves depression as well as increasing your body’s manufacturing of vitamin D.  Cold weather also makes the heart work harder to distribute blood throughout the body. For an unhealthy heart that struggles to manage the additional stress, this process can exacerbate illness and injury. But a regular exerciser with cardiovascular endurance can make their heart muscle even stronger.
Stick to a sleep schedule of the same bedtime and wake up time. This helps to regulate your body's clock and could help you fall asleep and stay asleep for the night.  A relaxing, routine activity right before bedtime conducted away from bright lights helps separate your sleep time from activities that can cause excitement, stress or anxiety which can make it more difficult to fall asleep, get sound and deep sleep or remain asleep.
If your hands aren’t actually grimy, the best way to clean them is to use hand sanitizer. It cleans your hands much better than soap and water, so it reduces the bacterial burden to a much greater extent.  Alcohol-based hand sanitizer is more effective. Keeping hands clean through improved hand hygiene is one of the most important steps we can take to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others.

Stop Spreading Germs.............Hygiene etiquette involves practices that prevent the spread of illness and disease. A critical time to practice good hygiene etiquette is when you are sick, especially when coughing or sneezing.  To prevent from spreading germs cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.  Put your used tissue in a wastebasket.  If you don't have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve, not your hands.  Remember to wash your hands after coughing or sneezing.

Keep your skin moisturized....The skin has a higher tendency of becoming dry and dull-looking. When the temperature outside is cold, the skin’s pores shrink considerably, which causes heat to accumulate inside the skin, resulting in dry skin.  Moisturizers are great against the dehydrating effects of winter. Keeping your skin hydrated is especially important because the dryness and stiffness of your skin during the cold months will make it susceptible to infections and outbreaks.
A Boost To Your Immune System.  The temperatures are much colder, the winter also brings much drier air, which can unexpectedly lead to dehydration. This can cause your body to feel sluggish and run-down, with muscle fatigue.  This can also cause you to become more susceptible to certain illnesses, such as the common cold or the flu. When you drink plenty of water, you actually give your body the fluids it needs to fight off these issues.
Make Exercise an Enjoyable Part of Your Everyday Life. There are many great reasons to exercise from improving energy, mood, sleep, and health to reducing anxiety, stress, and depression.

Washing your hands is easy, and it’s one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of germs. Clean hands can stop germs from spreading from one person to another and throughout everyone.
Flu Vaccines are available at Universal Hospital Pharmacy. Seasonal influenza is an acute respiratory infection caused by influenza viruses. Flu vaccines cause antibodies to develop in the body about two weeks after vaccination.