It’s cold outside, which means its harder for Calgarians to stay healthy.
Winter is an especially hard time to focus on our healthy eating, as hibernation often happens along with delicious goodies that are so hard to resist.
So what should we be doing and consuming? Calgary Buzz asked registered dietitian Patricia Chuey for some of her quick top tips on how to stay and eat healthy during the winter months:
“It’s not just about food,” Chuey notes. She encourages Canadians to be active most days of the week, even if it’s just for a 10 to 15 minute walk. A short walk goes along way for blood sugar, energy, and weight control.
Chuey encourages creativity in about buying local vegetables and in season vegetables -root vegetables such as carrots and potatoes are affordable all year round. Plan half of your plate as vegetables, along with some protein, and then also having whole grains.
Chuey stressed how important eggs are in our diet, as they are a natural healthy nutrient dense protein choice. Eggs are especially an important part of your diet in the winter as they are an excellent source for vitamin D, something most of us unfortunately lack during the snowy months.
Chuey states that Egg Farmers of Canada are trying to reach out to people reminding them that eggs raised in Canada are 100% naturally free from any added steroids or hormones and, better yet for us, they are affordable too.
Myth: Brown eggs are healthier than white. Chuey says this isn’t true — colour does not indicate level of nutrition; white eggs are just as healthy as brown ones.
(P.S. If you want to introduce more eggs into your diet, eggs.ca has lots of ideas and recipes.)
Hydration is something we think about all of the time in the summer when it’s hot, but we often forget about it in the winter. So it’s eight glasses of water a day, right? Maybe. Chuey says it’s a little more complicated than that–and it depends on your height.
“A taller person has a higher need for water for longer and more veins and arteries, and we typically hear from any guidelines that (we need anywhere) from 6-10 or 8-10 (glasses),” she explains.
The best way to tell if you are properly hydrated is by your urine. If you’re heading to the washroom every one to two hours in the day, and if your urine is clear, you’re good to go.
Chuey explains that it doesn’t just have to be water either; you can get hydrated from tea, milk, almond milk, 100% fruit juices, soups, and watery fruits and vegetables.
Getting enough sleep is also a major part of a persons health says Chuey. She says if you feel like you need to sleep more in the winter you should sleep more. It’s also important to manage stress and minimize factors that you know are bad for your health, such as smoking and excessive alcohol consumption.
As a fantastic bonus, Chuey’s tips are fantastic for keeping you healthy all year long, too!