The cold weather over the winter can leave our bodies feeling tired and fragile, especially for those who suffer from muscle or joint pain.
Read our 5 tips below to help you beat those winter aches & pains:
1.) EXERCISE: Any kind of exercise is important to get the blood flowing. Maintaining regular exercise through the winter can help to keep our muscles and joints stay more flexible which can reduce inflammation, stiffness, and pain. Whatever activity you choose, always remember to stretch and warm-up beforehand, so to avoid injury to the affected areas.
2.) STAY HYDRATED: When the weather is colder we tend to reach for hot drinks such as tea and coffee to warm us. Warm drinks are beneficial as they help keep your body warm, and keeping your body warm can help ease joint pain. However, it is also really important to drink plenty of water. Staying hydrated during the colder months can have a positive effect on muscle and joint injuries as it helps to keeps our body tissues healthy. It is recommended that adults should drink between 1.5-2 litres of water per day.
If you struggle to get drink water each day then fill a refillable water bottle & carry it with you, challenge yourself to finish it by the end of the day.
And if you don’t like the taste of plain water then try adding some slices of lemon, lime, cucumber, some mint or berries.
3.) DIET: Changes to our diet over the winter can help to ease muscle and joint complaints. Vitamin C, Vitamin D & Omega 3 fatty acids, are all crucial to supporting our bodies through cold weather so aim to eat plenty of oily fish, vegetables and citrus fruits such as oranges.
It’s important to know that Vitamin D from the diet alone is not adequate to provide enough vitamin D during the winter. Sunlight is a key source, so for those who have limited exposure to the sun in winter taking a supplement is a good idea.
3.) RELAXATION: It is important to take to time to rest & relax when we can during the colder months as this helps our bodies to repair. It is really beneficial to regularly have a nice long, hot bath or shower, especially in the morning, as this assists our blood vessels to expand and therefore our muscle relax.
Warming the body also activates neural pathways that reduces the brain’s perception of pain.
4.) KEEP WARM & LAYER UP: It’s extremely important to keep the core temperature high, so when it’s really cold ensure you throw on a hat, gloves & warm coat. Warm underwear and other layers on your legs can help with pain in your lower joints.
Dressing in layers can allow you to stay toasty and also quickly adjust by removing a layer if you get too hot. Also, make sure to have the appropriate accessories, like gloves, hats, scarves, and warm boots, to help fight the cold when you have to head outside.
5.) CONSIDER OSTEOPATHIC TREATMENT: Osteopathic treatment really can help to relieve those aches & pains bought on with cold weather. The stretching, movement and massage of affected areas helps improve function, ease pain, & increase mobility.