The days are shorter, and the weather’s getting colder, so it’s time to prepare yourself and your family for winter. It may not be wintertime where you are right now, but winter is coming – eventually. When it arrives, you want to be prepared in both body and mind, so take a look at these five tips on preparing for winter and staying healthy through the season.
1. Prepare Your Home
Clear ice or snow off surfaces inside and out to avoid slips, falls, and other accidents. Make sure there is an emergency kit (including blankets) inside the house, just in case. Be proactive about checking smoke detectors throughout the house because even though most people don’t think about them during winter, fires happen year-round.
Don’t forget about water safety, either. Colder temps mean more pipes freezing- which can lead to burst pipes that may flood your home.
Check your heating systems to ensure they are working correctly and have all necessary supplies like fuel, filters, and antifreeze. Don’t forget to clear gutters or any debris near your home’s foundation to prevent flooding.
The last tip is to invest in window insulation kits so that you can save money on energy bills by insulating windows properly.
2. Get Enough Vitamin D
Sunlight is one of our best sources of vitamin D, a nutrient that helps regulate blood pressure and build strong bones. Our bodies can produce vitamin D from sunlight, but when we’re indoors all winter or when there isn’t much sun, we may get less than we need.
You can get your daily dose of vitamin D from food or supplements like cod liver oil, salmon, or eggs. Knowing how to get vitamin D in the winter is good for avoiding the risks associated with deficiency, such as weak bones, depression, and high blood pressure.
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3. Bundle Up
Keep warm by bundling up when you go outdoors. Dress in layers so you can take off or add clothes based on the temperature. Hats and scarves are also great accessories to keep your head warm and your ears uncovered. If you’re unsure if it’s too cold, look at local weather forecasts online before heading out. It’s always better to be prepared.
4. Get Outside
There are plenty of ways to enjoy the outdoors during wintertime. Take walks in your neighborhood, meet new neighbors, go sledding down a hill, and bundle up to enjoy outdoor activities like cross-country skiing.
And if it gets too cold to be outside, try bundling up and using indoor exercises like yoga or pilates to stay active. Plus, there’s nothing better than snuggling under a blanket after being out in the snow.
5. Keep Emergency Contact Information Handy
Emergencies happen no matter the season. So it’s essential to keep updated contact information on hand for doctors, employers, family members etc., in case something happens and you cannot contact these people yourself. It also might be helpful to have an emergency bag packed with clothes, toiletries and other items that could help you if needed.
Getting vitamin D and staying active are two great ways to stay healthy in the winter. If you live somewhere with long, dark winters, try to find time for outdoor activity when the sun is out. As a final tip, bundle up with warm clothes and slippers if you’re outside.