1 year ago

As the nights draw in and temperatures lower, it’s important to stay fit and healthy this winter. Winter health and wellbeing depends on four key areas: food, warmth, exercise and protection from the higher risks of viral illness. 

Our top tips for staying fit and healthy during winter

1. Eating well in winter

Cooler days means warm hearty meals and snacks tend to take the place of lighter salad options. This however shouldn’t mean a reduction in our fruit and vegetable intake. Winter provides an abundance of seasonal fruits and vegetables for healthy winter eating including:

Seasonal Winter Vegetables

Beetroot, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Kale, Leeks, Potatoes, Pumpkin, Silverbeet and Sweet Potato to name a few.

Seasonal Winter Fruit

Apples, Avocados, Banana, Dates, Kiwi, Mandarins, Oranges and Strawberries, amongst others.

Choosing seasonal produce provides many benefits including quality, availability and often lower prices. It’s also a good time to practise bulk cooking and make a meal that can provide leftovers or enough for snacks too. For some great nutritious and tasty winter meals, check out these healthy winter recipes from Cancer Council.

2. Benefits of winter exercise

Winter is a great time for exercise, with the cooler temperatures making it easier to exercise throughout the day. A minimum of 30 mins physical activity every day is recommended. From taking a walk with a friend, to choosing the stairs instead of the lift, or getting off the bus a stop early – there’s many quick and simple ways to incorporate exercise into your everyday. Don’t let the colder temperatures or darker nights put you off. Here’s some motivation to get out and exercise this winter.

Did you know that a lack of physical activity is responsible for 11% of the disease burden associated with coronary heart disease?  Getting active and staying active this winter not only will warm you up, but it could also help you beat heart disease. – (Heart Foundation Australia)

Not only does exercise help us stay fit, it also helps keep us warm. By mixing up the types of exercise and choosing to exercise with others can help with motivation through the winter season.

Mix it Up

Physical exercise can be both an indoor or outdoor activity. From simple stretching, balance and resistance exercises you can do at home through to indoor classes such as Yoga, Tai Chi and Walking Basketball – there’s lots on offer at the new Wilgulga Sports Complex. There are plenty of physical exercise options to choose from in Woolgoolga and surrounds.

Make it social

Why not try out a new exercise class or join a local group. From social walks on the beach to adult physie and learn to skate classes, there are many options to choose from. You may also meet some new people and make a friend or two.

A minimum of 30 minutes physical activity will aid your health and fitness this winter. Enjoy a daily walk, join a local walking group or go for a walk with a friend.

 3. Winter Sun Safety

A drop in temperature does not reflect a drop in the strength of the sun’s rays. UV (ultraviolet) radiation can still occur and you can get sunburnt, even on cloudy days in winter. If you are going to be outside for more than 10 minutes and the UV is 3 or above, you need sun protection.

This awesome UV forecast tool enables you to check the UV forecast for your location.

When choosing a sunscreen, the higher SPF protection the better, with SPF50 or 30 being the recommended options offering 98% protection (1/50th (2%) of UV coming through) and 96.7% protection respectively with 1/30th (3.33%) of UV coming through). It is recommended sunscreen is applied at least 20 minutes before sun exposure and then reapplied every 2 hours thereafter.

Don’t forget to slip, slop, slap, seek and slide this winter:

  • SLIP on sun protective clothing, 
  • SLOP on sunscreen, 
  • SLAP on a sun protective hat, 
  • SEEK shade, 
  • SLIDE on sun protective sunglasses.

Winter sun still contains strong UV and sun protection is recommended.

Skin Checks at Beach Street GP, Woolgoolga

It is important to keep up to date with your annual or bi-annual skin check. At Beach Street Family Practice, Wooolgoolga we offer comprehensive and ethical skin checks for adults and children. Make sure to talk to your doctor about your level of risk and for advice on early detection of skin abnormalities and conditions.

For more information on sun safety visit Generation Sun Smart Australia

4. Flu & Covid Vaccination

Lastly, you can make sure you are protected against the risk of serious illness from both influenza and covid 19 viruses through vaccination. Read more about the vaccinations on offer and how to make a booking on our blog: Keeping up to date with Covid + Flu Vaccines.

To discuss your winter health and wellness needs, or book your winter skin check
call us on (02) 6654 1282 or pop in to the surgery to book your appointment.