Tuesday, June 12, 2018
9 Tips To Get Healthy And Get The Most Out Of This Summer
The summer is officially here and it’s a given that many of us have lots of exciting plans in store for the months ahead, but it goes by so quickly and before we all know it, the nights will be drawing in and that familiar autumn chill will be in the air. So how can you make the most out of summer this year? In this post we will explore 9 things you can do to stay healthy and have more energy so by the time September comes you feel satisfied you have packed your time with precious valuable memories for you and your family to cherish forever.
1. Eat healthily
This could be a whole blog post in itself but eating a healthy balanced diet has a real impact on daily energy levels and well-being. High sugar foods cause peaks in energy followed by drops, which then create more cravings for sugar. It’s a vicious cycle and one that is difficult to break from. Try to eat little and often throughout the day, nourishing yourself with a balanced diet to avoid these dips in energy.
When your kids are telling you they are hungry every 5 minutes make sure you have healthy snacks stocked up including fruit, raisins, breadsticks and yogurts.
Also consider limiting heavy carbs such as bread rolls and pasta, it's not about cutting out foods but too much of these can leave you feeling bloated and uncomfortable. You can read more about diet and exercise here.
2. Stay hydrated
The NHS recommends we drink approximately 1.2 litres of water everyday, that's 6 -8 glasses. Keep in mind that this is based on an average British day regarding weather, so if we are having a heat wave or you are on holiday in a warmer country, it should be more.
When we are dehydrated our skin, energy levels and overall health is affected, when you feel tired it might be that your body needs more water to work efficiently as opposed to needing caffeine or sugar.
It's also worth noting that when your body is dehydrated you might think you’re hungry so keeping yourself watered means you won't eat unnecessarily.
3. Get active
Research has proven time and time again the benefits of the great outdoors to our physical and mental well-being. Your body craves oxygen rich air and the more active you are the more energy you have. Go on a family bike ride, kick a ball around the park, go on a day trip to the beach or simply take a walk. These are all healthy, beneficial activities, and best of all they are free.
4. Limit screen time
It's easy to talk about the detriment of screen time for kids but children learn from us, and adults have an equally conflicted relationship with technology as children. As the parent it’s up to you to set the boundaries, try scheduling in specific screen free times and encourage other forms of activity or role-play. Remember to stick to these restrictions yourself too!
Breaking away from the screen prevents you and your family from becoming simply passive consumers of content. By getting up and doing something, you reignite the body and the brain. Screens should be particularly limited at bedtime because the light tricks your mind into thinking its still daylight and this makes it difficult to sleep.
5. Be sun safe
In the UK the weather can be very changeable and most of us know that in a big heat wave we should apply sunscreen to our children and ourselves. Remember though that even on cloudy days the damaging UV rays can get through. These rays cause skin damage, increase cancer risk and premature aging. With this is mind, be sure to check your sunscreen for UV protection as well as the factor number, this is rated out of 5 stars and is sometimes hidden on the back of the bottle. You can learn more about sunburn here.
6. Be alcohol aware
Most people enjoy an ice-cold beer or glass of wine in the sunshine but remember that alcohol doesn't count in your water intake. In fact it only serves to dehydrate you, which can be potentially dangerous on a very hot day. Also it simply feels awful to be hung-over and even a few glasses a night can lead to lack of energy and a sluggish feeling in the day. If you think you or a loved one has a problem with alcohol addiction you can read more here.
7. Reduce or quit smoking
Summer is a great opportunity to reduce your smoking or quit altogether, with the kids around all the time you will probably smoke less anyway. As well as being incredibly bad for you, smoking is an expensive habit. Think about the money you could save and the memories you could make this cash instead. We appreciate it’s not easy though, so for more help click here.
8. Be pollen aware
Hay fever can be very destructive and for some people it completely destroys their experience of summer. It is recommended that those who suffer keep an eye out and check the pollen count on a daily basis. They can then take medication in advance to prevent its severity. Also consider buying local honey as this helps to build a resistance to local pollen. For further video support and more click here.
9. Make plans
As much as everyone raves about how exciting the summer is, for some it can be a miserable and isolating time. The 6-week school break can feel long and with pressures to spend lots of money and go on big holidays it can feel like you are missing out if you can't do these things. Social media reinforces this as too many people only post about the positive things in their life and it can look like everyone is having an amazing time. In reality though, we all have our own struggles, even those with perfect Facebook lives.
Make plans and connect with empathetic people, it doesn't have to be expensive but just leaving the house and meeting others can be very valuable and improve your mental health. The important thing is to remember is if you do feel lonely you can reach out and ask for support, you are never alone. If you are concerned about your own or a loved one’s mental health, read more here.