With the cold weather set to continue, 1st Contact Travel Clinic offers this advice for staying warm during the UK winter.
1. WEAR LAYERS
Many people don’t realise that wearing several thin layers keeps you insulated better than just one or two bulky items. Thermal underwear also helps, as do two pairs of wool socks or a pair of thick pantyhose.
A lot of heat escapes through the head, which is why a beanie or warm hat is a good idea! Scarves, gloves and a good pair of warm insulated boots are also essential.
2. STAY HEALTHY
Having a strong immune system and a healthy body does wonders to keep you warm during the cold winter months. If you haven’t yet had the flu jab, pop into the 1st Contact Travel Clinic and have your flu jab for just £15.
If you’re a smoker, the smoking ban will send you outside into the freezing weather. But that’s not the only reason to quit: smoking slows down your circulation, which lowers your body temperature.
Try to incorporate at least 5 fresh fruit or vegetables in your diet and avoid cold convenience foods wherever possible. Exercise has also proven to have numerous health benefits and helps you to increase your body temperature. Try to move around as much as possible – even a brisk walk or 20 minutes of yoga will do the trick.
By exercising frequently in winter you are not only increasing your temperature and your general health, you might also shed a few unwanted kilos before summer comes around.
3. EAT HOT FOOD
Eating warm meals such as stews and soups will help to increase your internal temperature. Meals with chilli, cinnamon and curry included will also push your temperature up, so try to include these in your meals on those very chilly evenings.
Warm drinks like coffee, tea and hot malt drinks are all useful, but the best hot drink is green tea, with a bit of fresh ginger chopped into it, and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice – this will not only keep you warm, it will also boost your immune system.
4. WARM YOUR HOME
There are many ways to ensure your home stays nice and toasty.
- Try to keep your main living room at around 18-21C and the rest of the house at around 16C.
- Insulate your home properly by fitting aluminium foil behind your radiators and cling film to your windows. Make sure your loft has at least 10–11 inches of insulation and that all wall cavities are insulated. Also ensure that no cold draughts are coming in through the gap under doors by placing a towel across the bottom of the door. Insulate your hot water cylinder and pipes.
- Keep unused rooms closed to allow heat to be contained in areas you are using.
- If you are using your fireplace, anthrax will ensure maximum heat for longer; if you are not using your fireplace, insulate it with plastic sheeting so that the cold doesn’t come in through the fireplace.
- If you are baking or roasting in your oven, leave the oven door open afterwards, to add a little warmth to your kitchen.
- Rugs also add much warmth to a home!
- make sure wall cavities are insulated
Check if you are eligible for government heating support, by clicking here.
5. SLEEP TIGHT
If you are using an electric blanket, you should have it checked regularly to ensure it’s not faulty and dangerous. Rather than leave it on all night, switch it on half an hour before you plan to get into bed and then take a hot water bottle to bed with you and switch the blanket off.
If you don’t have an electric blanket, invest in a big hot water bottle and let it warm your sheets for half an hour before you go to bed. Wearing a headscarf will also help you to retain your body heat during the cold winter night; as will body heat or – if you sleep alone – placing pillows on either side of you.
We hope you find these tips useful and that you stay warm and healthy for the remainder of winter.
For health advice, flu jabs, travel vaccinations and more, visit the 1st Contact London Travel Clinic at Castlewood House, 77-91 New Oxford Street, or call 0808 141 5506 (UK Free call) for more information about any of our services.