OSHCstudents- Winter is often dreaded; it signifies not only cold weather and dark mornings but also the cold & flu season – meaning constant illness for some. However, we can do several things to keep ourselves healthy during winter.
1. Boost Your Immunity
Eating well, getting enough sleep, and staying active are all important to help support your immune system. In particular, make sure you are getting enough:
- Vitamin C – found in most fruit and vegetables
- Zinc – found in most animal products and many nuts and seeds
- Iron – found in meat, beans, and lentils as well as in green leafy vegetables, such as spinach
If you are low in any of these, your body may find it harder to fight off colds and the flu.
While it is harder to get motivated during winter – the daylight hours are shorter and it’s cold outside – it is important to remember that being active is an essential part of being healthy. Bringing your physical activity indoors is a great way to continue to stay fit and healthy while keeping warm. Why not try yoga, aerobics, or indoor rock climbing?
3. Eat Well
The cold weather can make us want to ditch salads in favor of comfort foods, which can be high in fat, salt, and sugar. Instead, consider a warm, nourishing soup or stew, packed full of flavor and healthy vegetables. Ensure your winter diet contains plenty of nutrient-rich fruit and vegetables, such as sweet potato, green leafy vegetables, mandarins, bananas, garlic, and ginger.
4. Sleep Well
When we rest, it’s our body’s chance to repair and re-energise. Getting at least eight hours of proper sleep a night will assist your body’s immune system to fight off colds. Try to avoid alcohol, caffeine, and cigarettes before resting, as these can affect the quality of your sleep.
5. Practise Good Hygiene
When you are well we can help slow the spread of germs by:
- Washing your hand frequently with soap and water, especially after being in public places, before eating and after going to the toilet
- Use hand sanitiser when soap or water is unavailable
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
- Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects used regularly
- Try to keep a distance between yourself and other people in public places.
6. Drink Plenty of Water
To stay hydrated, it’s important to drink before you feel thirsty. Even if you’re not thirsty, try to drink water regularly throughout the day. You should aim for about two liters of water per day. A handy tip is to always carry a water bottle with you. If you struggle with plain water, try herbal tea or clear broth soups to increase your fluid intake.
7. Managing Stress
Stress can lower our immune system, decreasing our resistance to fighting germs and viruses.
8. Get Vaccinated
Flu Vaccine – the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends that people get a flu vaccine each year. Flu vaccines cause antibodies to develop in the body about two weeks after vaccination. These antibodies protect against infection. Even if you get the flu, your symptoms will be milder. You will be able to book into most GPs and Pharmacies in Australia for your yearly flu vaccine.
You are international students or foreigners arrive to Australia, or Australian citizens traveling abroad who are looking for OSHC, OVHC, travel insurance, please contact OSHCstudents Team at email: firstname.lastname@example.org and our partners for further information and assistance.
OSHCstudents (source: Allianz)