How Eating Well & Exercising Can Keep You From Getting Sick This Winter

How to Keep Yourself from Getting Sick

It’s the winter and, for a lot of people, that means the chances of getting sick are higher. While being cold doesn’t necessarily cause a cold, viruses prefer colder temperatures and your body’s defense mechanisms might be negatively affected by cold weather.

There are more than 200 viruses that can cause the common cold and if you dread getting a stuffy nose, sore throat, or a cough this winter, there are a few things you can do to protect yourself.

Eat Fruits and Vegetables

If you’re low on nutrients, your immune system will not function as it should. This means you’ll be a lot more likely to get sick. Eating a healthy and balanced diet, filled with vegetables, fruits, protein, and healthy fats can help your immune system act as it should, which can keep you from getting sick. A variety of different foods is important, because eating many different healthy foods is a good way to ensure that you get the vitamins and nutrients your body needs to stay healthy.

Studies Show Exercise Can Prevent a Cold

A study has shown that those who get at least 20 minutes of physical exercise five days a week are about 50% less likely to get a cold. In addition, when those who are physically active do get sick, their symptoms tend to be less severe. One reason for this could be that exercising results in a temporary rise in immune cells that circulate throughout the body. While this is only a temporary boost, each exercise session and boost helps your body fight off infections.

While it can often be tough to exercise in the winter (when it’s cold and snowy outside) it’s important to maintain a good level of physical activity. You may have to modify your workouts due to weather conditions. For instance, if you normally go for a walk, jog, or bike ride outside, you might have to shift to using a treadmill or stationary bicycle instead. If you do decide to exercise outside, check local weather conditions before you do, dress in layers, and know when it’s too cold and you should cut your workout short.

Staying hydrated is important as well. People tend to feel less thirsty when it’s cold, but that doesn’t mean water isn’t still necessary. Make sure to drink frequently throughout the day. This is especially important if you’re exercising or doing any sort of physical activity.

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