Here is the Reflex Spinal Health definitive guide to having a happy, healthy winter – Enjoy!
Vitamin D is an essential supplement for the winter season. It’s primarily obtained via direct exposure to sunlight. However, this can become difficult during the cold, dark winter. That’s where vitamin D supplements come into play. This nutrient helps to contribute to bone strength, aids in the absorption of calcium and helps promote a positive mood. Good food sources for vitamin D are dairy, eggs, salmon, tuna and mushrooms.
Winter will be much more bearable with help from our friend, vitamin C. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant, which protects against free radical damage, chemicals and pollutants that may harm our body’s cells. Vitamin C is easy to obtain through diet. Citrus fruits, berries, kiwi, pineapple and strawberries are a few of the best sources of vitamin C. If these nutrient-rich foods aren’t part of your diet, you can supplement vitamin C in a variety of forms – from tasty chewables to convenient capsules.
This is an often overlooked mineral with a host of important benefits. Zinc supports proper immune function, eye health and the regulation of appetite, taste and smell. It is also responsible for the production of superoxide dismutase (SOD), which plays an important role in protecting our bodies from free radical damage. Men may especially benefit from this mineral, as zinc helps to support healthy prostate tissue, sperm mobility and testosterone production.* Food sources that are high in Zinc are eggs, shellfish, red meat, chickpeas, beans, lentils, nuts and seeds.
Vitamin E is a potent anti-oxidant which strengthens the immune system and plays numerous roles in the body. It is said to help with a wide range of diseases (like cancer and arthritis) and the aging process. A good source of vitamin E are nuts, wholegrains and vegetable oils.
Vitamin A (retinol) is a fat-soluble vitamin. Most people know that it is good for your vision, but it’s also important to get plenty of this vitamin in winter. Vitamin A deficiency has been associated with a reduced immune response and an increased risk of infection. Foods that are a good source of vitamin A are tuna, eggs, carrots, sweet potato, leafy green vegetables.
Scroll down for some delicious vitamin rich recipes to try!
Obviously we are biased here. But as long as your spine is functioning then the rest will follow. When you are in chronic pain your body is in a permanent state of fight or flight and this means your digestive system, immune system and cardiovascular system take a beating! So staying out of pain and functioning better is likely to keep you feel great all over! Take a look at our section on everything the clinic has to offer to keep you healthy and happy over the winter months!
Probably the most underrated and the most perfect for this time of year! The festive period can be stressful for everyone for different reasons. Meeting up with family, planning festivities, sorting child care and the most important – Christmas shopping. BrainTap is a great way to de-stress and switch off! The headset can be used here in clinic or you can purchase one to use at home as often as you like – or perhaps as a gift for a loved one!
Massage therapy is known as one of the most powerful relaxation techniques and has so many other positive benefits. It released those feel good endorphins, improves circulation and stimulates the lymphatic system (this is great for helping the immune system stave off those winter bugs). Massage is also a great accompaniment to your usual adjustments to help your body function at its optimum.
Chiropractic and Osteopathy
Chiropractic and Osteopathy are all about helping your body to function at its optimum. Christmas is such an important time to be feeling our best. The last thing you want is a niggle become the focus of your festivities. Make sure you chat to any of our practitioners if there’s something you’d like our help with. We also offer free spinal checks if you are unsure if you’re in the right place.
Orthotics are specialised insoles prescribed by our biomechanics specialist, Andrew Newson. There’s no better time than the winter to get this sorted! Are you someone that finds winter walks uncomfortable? Are you always getting shin splints on the football pitch or standing at the Christmas carol concert unbearable? Then it might be worth having a chat with Andrew or your practitioner about whether orthotics could make your winter more comfortable.
Have you spotted our magic machine in the clinic? The K-Laser is a fantastic, specialist piece of equipment that reduces inflammation and promotes the healing process within the body. The laser gets fantastic results on all sorts of conditions varying from ankle sprains to frozen shoulder. If you have a stubborn injury you can’t get rid of or want to speed up healing time and get back to what you love quicker over the winter.
Hopefully our toolbox of tricks will help you maximise your enjoyment and minimise your stress over the winter and festive period.
With everything you have to manage over the winter months – from Christmas parties, to end of year work deadlines sleep can often slip to the bottom of the priority list. However, don’t let it!! Sleep is absolutely crucial for your health and here’s a few reasons why getting those Z’s In is useful for staying healthy over the winter.
When the cold winter months arrive and it feels like its dark more often than its light it can be hard to keep motivation to exercise high. However, not only is exercising outside beneficial for mental wellbeing and getting your dose of vitamin D , there are so many other benefits too. We all tend to eat more over the winter months so keeping moving will keep those excess calories burning away! Research shows regular exercise is vital for keeping a healthy immune system and a healthy heart. Therefore, the winter is exactly the time to keep at it. To try and motivate us all to keep going we’ve compiled a list of some great activities in our local area that are fun and could play a part in staying healthy over the winter.
Forbury Gardens Ice rink
Why not try something a bit different this winter – Ice skating ! The temporary ice rink in Forbury gardens is a great opportunity to get outside and active with the whole family. There’s also all the Christmas markets right next door so you can warm up with a mulled wine afterwards! Click here for ticket links to the Forbury Ice rink!
Park Run is a free, organised 5km timed running event. It is held weekly in various locations. Our nearest Park Run is Thames valley Park. It’s a great way to get outside and also test yourself. You can keep track of your times and keep aiming to improve! For the super keen beans out there, they are even running two Park Run events on Christmas Day. Or perhaps it could be your new year’s resolution? It’s open to kids too and a brilliant way to have fun as a family, get fitter, and ensure staying healthy over the winter.
Fancy a swim in luxury – then look no further! The Thames lido is the perfect place to swim outdoors in their heated pool. The best part is you can then reward yourself with a yummy lunch or afternoon tea and trip to the sauna! Over advent they also offer a different deal each day – spot on!
Winter Wonderwheels – 15th December
Dorney Lake in Eton are holding a variety of challenges at the location. These include Cycling, Running, Walking, Push or anything in between. The distances vary from 1km to 10km so this means every can get involved !
Reading Climbing centre
If the weather just isn’t on your side and you’re looking for something in the warm, then Reading climbing centre is a great option. They offer Adult, youth and family introductions at the centre. This will enable you to find your feet under supervision. Following that there is various classes and sessions running. Reading Climbing Centre
Getting out on your bike is a great way to get fresh air and get active as a family. We are also lucky enough to live along the Thames path. Have a look on their website and you’ll be able to find some fab routes along the river with some great views. This also keeps you all safe from the busy roads. Cycling is great for your cardiovascular health and also reducing impact on the joints.
When its cold and dark its easy to reach for comfort food and something quick and convenient that might not always be the healthiest. We have been told in the past that eating our five a day is important, However, what we should really aim for in the winter especially is 8-10 portions! The main consideration is variety. Keeping it colourful means you’re getting a great variety of goodness in to your system . The majority of your portions should also come from vegetables rather than fruit in order to keep your sugar intake low.
The team at reflex put together a few of our favourite recipes together that will help boost your daily portions, keep you warm and are nice and easy. Click on the links below for the recipes and let us know what you think!
Chickpea, Pepper and Swiss Chard Stew
LOADED MEXICAN-STYLE SWEET POTATO SKINS
SLOW-COOKED ROOT VEGETABLE SOUP
Beautiful veggie moussaka
17 Church Road, Caversham, Reading, Berkshire RG4 7AA
Reflex Spinal Health are a passionate, dynamic spinal health team. We are committed to help as many in our community of Reading, Berkshire and South Oxfordshire to enjoy the vitality of great health, to reach their health goals and feel truly alive! Our chiropractors and osteopaths offer the highest standards of care in a superb environment.