Your essential winter to-do list


Self-care means taking care of your body and mind proactively. This year, to be better prepared for the chilly season, here's a list of ways to make this winter healthier.

1. Pay attention to your mental wellbeing
Exercise and healthy eating habits are important to your physical wellbeing - and play a big role in your mental wellbeing, too. We need to rest, relax and recharge regularly to build resilience and stay energised for tomorrow.

Nurturing your mental wellbeing helps boost your mood and self-esteem, and clear your mind. Here are some ways to do that:

  • Practise mindfulness: take time to pause, reflect and be present in the moment.
  • Make sure you get enough quality sleep.
  • Spend time reconnecting with nature.
  • Do something you love - like listening to music, watching your favourite shows or cooking.
  • Laugh! Laughter is the best medicine and a good way to relieve stress.

If you're wondering about the importance of staying mentally fit or how make mental wellbeing part of your daily routine, start with a mental wellbeing assessment. Then, visit our Vitality Mental-Wellbeing channel and learn how to improve your mental wellbeing with expert videos and podcasts.

2. Get your flu shot
We can still be proactive about our health while we prepare for our COVID-19 vaccinations. Read here about why the flu shot is still an essential this year. Remember, we missed flu season last year while we stayed safely at home, so it's important to get a vaccine this year and build resistance against the flu.

3. Move more
Exercise contributes to good holistic health - and therefore to a healthy immune system - in much the same way a healthy, balanced diet does. Just 30 minutes of moderate exercise, like walking or running, improves your physical health, helps you sleep better, reduces stress and anxiety, and boosts your mood. It also helps you build resistance against illness.

4. Eat healthily
The food you eat can also affect your wellbeing. "What you eat can have a very real effect on your day-to-day functioning," says Vitality dietitian Terry Harris. "Following a healthy, balanced diet can lower stress and anxiety, boost brain function, and nourish your body and mind. It also increases your energy and productivity. So, the next time you crave something sweet, reach for a fruit instead of a processed snack."

5. Screen for health risks - safely
Self-care means managing any existing health conditions, while still being mindful of the risks of COVID-19. Vitality Health Checks are designed to help you identify and manage health risks, and recommend ways to improve your health and wellness. You can now have a Vitality Health Check done safely, or even a Virtual Vitality Health Check-in, with a wellness specialist in our partner network. One Vitality Health Check and one Virtual Vitality Health Check a year is paid from the screening and prevention benefit of most medical schemes administered by Discovery Health (Pty) Ltd.

At Discovery, we understand that living a healthier lifestyle has its rewards and challenges. That's why your Discovery Health plan gives you access to Discovery Vitality, the world's leading behavioural change programme that encourages and rewards Discovery members for taking steps towards a more active and more informed, healthier lifestyle. Here's where you can get more information about Discovery Vitality or join online today in 60 seconds.

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