Low temperatures and snowy days approach on the horizon. Bears and bats will be curling up for hibernation, but you don’t have to do the same. Embody eco-friendliness all year by maintaining your energy-saving and recycling habits through the winter. Sustainability and personal health go together like peanut butter and jelly — stay healthy by cultivating your green nature.

Keep up with your habits during the winter, and it’ll make transitioning to spring wellness a breeze. Here are a few ways to sustain your health and environmentalism as the cold sets in.

 

 

How to Stay Healthy and Green During the Winter Months

Buy Winter Produce From Local Farmers

Winter is perfect for hearty stews, and soup isn’t complete without a serving of colorful vegetables. Look for winter produce like kale, carrots, parsnips and cauliflower. Seasonal veggies and fruits will be fresher and have a lower environmental impact than imported goods. Support the local farming community by heading to the farmers market or buying directly from a farmer. Your support will help them maintain production throughout the winter, which puts more healthy eats on your plate.

How to Stay Healthy and Green During the Winter Months

Save Money on Heating

You’ll likely want to crank up the thermostat to prevent the cold from creeping in. However, there are other ways to warm up without sending your energy bill into the stratosphere. Check the insulation in your attic and look for spots where you can see the floor joists — this means it needs a refill. Adding insulation allows your space to retain more heat and keep the chills out. Warm your place during the day by letting natural light flow in, and try insulating your windows for better energy efficiency.

Consider buying a smart thermostat for your HVAC system and programming it to lower the heat when you leave the house. You’ll spend less energy and money on warming your space when it’s unoccupied. Your thermostat will observe your patterns and heat your home without you lifting a finger. And don’t forget the most classic heating method there is — bundling up with your favorite sweater and fuzziest socks.

 

Keep Your Air Clean

It’s easy to forget about indoor air quality during the warm months when you’re out and about. However, unless you’re the Snow Miser, you’ll likely be inside for most of the winter. If you haven’t yet changed your filter, you’ll be breathing in an accumulation of dust, dead skin and other nasties. Replace the filter and combat the pollutants with a humidifier or air purifier. Both of these devices will remove the allergens from your air and shoo the sniffles away.

Consider investing in a whole-home humidifier if you live in a house. It’ll purify every nook and cranny rather than one or two rooms, ensuring your space is allergy-proofed from top to bottom.

 

Hydrate Often

Winter air dries you out, and your skin will suffer its effects without proper moisturization. Maintain the health of your largest organ by drinking water often. Hot chocolate and coffee are great winter treats, but remember to meet your daily water intake, too. Dehydration is possible at any time of the year and can have unwelcome effects on your cognition and functioning. Watch for the tell-tale symptoms of dehydration like thirst, tiredness and headache.

How to Stay Healthy and Green During the Winter Months

Break Out Your Reusable Cups

Take your warm drinks on the go with a reusable cup. Reusable containers reduce the amount of non-recyclable waste produced from the standard coffee cup. The lid and lining are often okay to recycle, but the cup itself contains materials that aren’t recycle-friendly. Reusable containers are more convenient and come in a range of appealing shapes, colors and designs. Use a durable thermos for hot drinks, or try a canteen for water.

If you do use a disposable cup, remember to dispose of the pieces separately. Throwing the paper cup into a recycling bin can make an entire load of waste non-recyclable. Aways deposit your trash in the appropriate cans.

How to Stay Healthy and Green During the Winter Months

Find New Ways to Exercise

Winter temperatures make it easy to turn into a couch potato, but exercising will keep you limber and refreshed. If it’s too cold to make regular gym trips, you have other options for maintaining your fitness. And thankfully, you can do them all within the comfort of your home.

Try stair-stepping, jump rope, ab crunches or squats. Break out the treadmill and take an indoor run, or use an exercise bike to rack up some miles. If you’re not a frequent gym-goer, ease into fitness with enjoyable activities like dancing or playing with your pet.

 

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