With winter comes sickness, or so we've been told.
And it's not because of the cold, but rather the lack of our exposure to the cold.
Suppressing our immune system by placing ourselves in a constant state of warm homeostasis weakens this and other primal thermoregulatory systems.
Here are some common health problems encountered during the winter season.
4. Weight Gain
Due to the common belief that we should stay out of the cold, people tend to stay inside and lay around all winter.
This obviously leads to weight gain, which leads to a plethora of other problems down the line.
An easy fix to this is cold runs! Yes, I'm sure it sounds crazy, but trust me. It is invigorating and refreshing. Just inhale more than you exhale and you'll feel like a million bucks.
Wanna feel 10x better? Go running in your shirts and tank top ;) I do it almost every day, and I haven't been sick in years.
3. Seasonal Depression
This is a serious issue that needs to be addressed. Mental health is no joke.
This is directly related to 2 things: lack of exposure to nature and lack of social interaction. People tend to stay inside during the winter which compounds the issue.
The solution is easy; get outside! Learn to love the cold, not fear it. Once you regularly do this, you will find people who think the same way you do.
2. Heart Attacks
There are many reasons why heart attacks increase in the winter time, one of them being, believe it or not, shoveling snow.
If a person has late-stage clogged arteries, the sudden increase in activity will increase workload on the heart, triggering a cardiac event.
The solution to this is to spend time in the cold! (Are you seeing a pattern here?) Regular cold exposure is proven to reduce inflammation and increase alkalinity. These combined effects will actually lower the risk of heart attacks, even after the cold season has left.
1. The Common Cold
As I said in the intro, this is a direct result of us not engaging our thermoregulatory systems.
Imagine your immune system like a muscle; if you don't work or engage it, it will weaken.
Regularly exposing yourself to the cold is like going to the gym for your immune system, even when you have a cold!
The next time you catch a cold, go into the cold, and take a few deep breaths. Inhale more than you exhale. Do it a few times, trust me. It helps.
The cold should be viewed as a source of power rather than a source of fear.
Convert that fear into strength, and grow from the cold. It can be one of your biggest allies, and actually keep you healthy instead of make you sick.
Author / Ice Man / Yoga Instructor / Plant-Based Wildman