As the temperature drops so does our resolve to eat healthy foods and maintain a health diet. It seems as if all the odds are against us when our hearts are telling us to eat the starchy and comforting foods to which we are drawn during the cooler months.
However, the chances are quite high that we’ll regret the choice to indulge. But there is no reason to despair! Here are four tips on how to stay in shape as the winter chill sets in. For each bit of food advice, we’ll include an exercise tip as our bodies need more help to combat the cold.
1) Make the most of the season
There are so many wonderful vegetables that are available during the winter season. And no, potatoes are not your only option, especially when they are prepared in butter or deep fried. Fill up on delicious carrots or add beetroots for some variation to your recipes. Don’t forget about cabbage, brussel sprouts and gem squash.
Exercise Tip: Go for a walk or run outdoors to keep colds and flu at bay. How? Plan your route, take a friend and dress for the season. Once that cold air hits your nostrils, all the tension from a busy day in the office will just melt away!Go for a walk or run outdoors to keep colds and flu at bay. How? Plan your route, take a friend and dress for the season. Once that cold air hits your nostrils, all that tension will just melt away!
2) Eat the right kinds of comfort foods
Do you want to feel like a warm blanket is snuggled around your body with each mouthful? Add hot spices to your dish for extra flavour and depth. If you’re looking for a tasty, heart-healthy recipe, why not try our Spicy Bean, Tomato and Sausage Soup recipe that is sure to bring the heat. Sneak in a slice of home-baked bread, lathered in Flora margarine and enjoy the sheer bliss of guilt-free, healthy food.
Exercise Tip: Not yet ready for the cold outdoors? Try the great indoors! Buy a set of light dumbbells, a skipping rope and a yoga mat. There are plenty of fun workout routines that you can download and stick on your wall as a reminder to stay active.
3) Watch your water intake
In winter, we tend to include tea, coffee and soups into our daily liquid quotient. We might believe that we’re not thirsty but we could run the risk of being severely dehydrated at a time when our bodies need to function properly throughout the day. So sneak a glass of water into your routine whenever you can. You can also add herbal teas or lukewarm water and slices of lemon into your meal plan.
Exercise Tip: Speaking of water, why not go to your community swimming pool to enjoy a heated water training session. If you’re a gym member, you can make full use of the pool facilities.Speaking of water, why not go to your community swimming pool to enjoy a heated water training session. If you’re a gym member, you can make full use of the pool facilities.
4) Immune system boost
We all need a daily dose of Vitamin A, C and the mineral Zinc. Especially in winter, as these are essential for a resilient immune system that promotes healthy eyes, skin and clear mucous membranes. Bring out the juicer and make ‘power orange’ smoothies, and you can also add lemon slices to your glasses of water.
Exercise Tip:Remember that a little goes a long way and maintaining your weight requires consistency. Write down your fitness goals, no matter how humble they may seem and STICK TO THEM!
If you’re looking for more information on healthy seasonal ingredients that can be added to your healthy eating plan during the winter season, be sure to take a look at Flora’s list of seasonal ingredients.