Keeping an eye on our health has never been more important.
As we get into fall and with winter approaching soon thereafter, it’s a good time to stay on top of your nutrients and healthy routines to help your body adjust to the changes in the weather and to defend better against cold and flu season.
The best nutrients and vitamins come from a healthy, balanced diet that is full of fresh fruits, vegetables, and lean meats. Sometimes though, our bodies need a little extra nutrition which can be delivered through supplements. These are additional sources of nutrition that, like the name implies, supplement your daily requirements.
Our very own Dr. Morgan Sheedy lends her expertise in supplementation, saying “Buying the right supplements is important, the better quality of supplement, your body will be able to absorb the nutrients more efficiently. Look for whole food supplementation.”
The right supplements for your specific needs may be based on your age, health conditions, or dietary restrictions. Although they are helpful, you don’t want any supplements to fully replace the natural nutrients you get from a healthy diet.
The active ingredients in many supplements support the body and overall health in some way and are perfectly safe to take. Vitamin D and calcium, for example, help support strong bones and reduce bone loss. Vitamins C and D support your immune system, while omea-3 fatty acids and other fish oils have been shown to support heart health and lower your blood pressure.
Strategically supplementing is a good idea as well, especially with the onset of winter, Dr. Morgan Sheedy adds. “It’s a good idea to get your vitamin D3 levels tested to see where you are currently at so you can supplement accordingly,” Dr. Morgan Sheedy says. “It’s an example of one supplement you should increase in winter due to lack of sunlight.”
In addition to maintaining a healthy diet and supplementation, there are other ways to maintain or increase active habits for overall health during the colder months, such as exercise and staying hydrated.
“Decreasing your sugar intake is good because sugar increases inflammation and fuels illnesses,” Dr. Morgan Sheedy adds. “Increasing vegetables, fruit, exercise and keeping up with hydration – drinking at least half your body weight in ounces of water – are key to staving off sugar and salt cravings.”
Dr. Morgan Sheedy also stresses that getting good sleep is another crucial factor for good health year round, and it’s even more important as the weather turns colder. “Lack of sleep causes decreased energy, mood fluctuations, irritability and stress. For better sleep, turn off your devices two hours prior to bedtime, read some positive material or listen to calming music. Every hour of sleep before midnight is the quality of two hours of sleep after midnight,” Dr. Morgan Sheedy said.