Staying healthy in recovery may seem like a difficult task. It is challenging to think about staying healthy when recovery keeps you busy enough, going to meetings, and keeping up with sobriety goals. A key thing to remember in recovery is that overall health matters to your state of mind and physical health, as well. The better you feel, the better the recovery will feel. Getting sick is no fun but there are some tricks to staying on the healthy track as colder months approach that may support overall wellness.
One thing about winter is that it slows people down. When people normally get outside, they are now sitting inside more, being around more people for longer periods of time, and not going outside as much to get fresh air. If you want to stay healthier in recovery this winter, get off the couch and get moving. A sedentary lifestyle during winter months can result in weight gain, decreased mood, and worsening of chronic illnesses like diabetes and high blood pressure. You may already have some existing health challenges (or mental health issues) due to recovery from addiction. The last thing you want is to exacerbate them. Aim for 30 minutes every day of some type of exercise, and throw in some extra meditation or mindfulness for good measure.
Find Vitamin D
With so little vitamin D coming in without sunlight, the chances of not getting enough are high. Adults need a minimum of 1,000 IU of vitamin D daily every year. To get this, it may take speaking with a doctor who can authorize some medication, as long as it won’t interfere with existing recovery meds. There are also foods high in vitamin D, orange juice, and natural supplements that can be taken for a boost. Be sure to speak with a treating physician prior to doing this.
Staying away from germs is not possible in the winter when it seems the microbes are flying everywhere. Hand hygiene is one way to help prepare for cold and flu season. It is probably best to avoid lots of handshaking and hand holding during this season with lots of people because it just spreads germs. However, depending on how you feel your immune system is doing, you may be able to go out and enjoy yourself without worrying too much. Just be sure to bring some hand sanitizer for a quick spritz if going to a party with lots of people and you are worried about getting sick.
Eat Good Food
Being healthy this winter is an inside job. The gut and overall health of your body rely on putting nutritious food into it. People often tend to let habits slide in colder months, but eating salads is just as easy for winter as it is for summer. Hit fruit and vegetables as much as possible and limit packaged and processed foods. That will be key to recovery.
A Step in the Right Direction provides quality care for clients seeking support for addiction recovery. Our goal is to help you be as healthy as you can by providing resources, tools, and support for your journey moving forward. For more information on sober living programs for men and women as well as recovery programs, call (877) 377-3702.