How to Stay Healthy in Canada Winter - CCSYR - York Region - Settlement Services

As the new year unfolds, it also creates a perfect opportunity to reset your priorities and focus on self-care. Being a newcomer overwhelmed with acclimatizing to the temperature changes, icy roads, and long nights, making resolutions might seem too far-fetched for you at the moment! However, we have come up with a one-stop guide on how to stay healthy in winter so that you can work on your wellness goals right away, considering the snowy and freezing days are here to stay for a while.

New Year resolution for your winter wellness

While we move further into 2024, this can be the ideal time to pause, reflect, and focus on aspects of life that often get ignored otherwise. With our self-care tips for newcomers, you can create practical goals not only to survive the cold and harsh winter but also to thrive as an individual and make happy memories of your first winter in Canada.

Tips for staying healthy in Winter:

  1. Keep Moving: Take short, brisk walks when the weather permits. You can also go for indoor walks in your local community centres. Many communities offer indoor recreational facilities, providing a warm and safe environment for staying active. To begin with, you can work out at home with a specific fitness routine assigned for each day.
  2. Boost Your Immune System: Combat the increased risk of illness during cold weather by getting enough vitamin C, maintaining a balanced diet, and getting adequate sleep. Consider taking vitamin supplements, especially vitamin D, during winter when exposure to sunlight is limited.
  3. Stay Hydrated: When planning to stay healthy in winter, remember that cold weather can be deceptively dry. Ensure you drink plenty of water throughout the day to stay hydrated and support your overall health. Incorporating hot soups, coffees, and teas can be smart ways of adding liquids to your diet that suit Canadian winters.
  4. Mindfulness Practices: Apart from staying active and focusing on nutrition and sleep, managing stress can be a game-changer for your winter wellness and self-care. Since life in a new country can be lonely, overwhelming, and stressful, apply mindfulness practices to stay present, calm, and focused.

Frequently Asked Questions about winter wellness and self-care

Q1: Why is staying healthy in winter particularly important for new immigrants in Canada?
A: The Canadian winter can be challenging for newcomers due to its freezing temperatures and unique weather conditions. Staying healthy is crucial to adapt to the cold climate and ensure a positive experience in a challenging environment.

Q2: How can new immigrants stay physically healthy during the winter months?
A: Dressing appropriately with insulated coats and waterproof boots, staying active through winter sports or indoor activities, and boosting the immune system with proper nutrition and hydration are vital for physical well-being.

Q3: What are some practical self-care tips for newcomers in a new country?
A: Building a support system by connecting with fellow immigrants and local communities, regular check-in with family physician, eating nutritious food, and engaging in mindfulness practices can significantly contribute to self-care for newcomers.

Q4: How important is it for new immigrants to prioritize physical and mental well-being during winter?
A: Prioritizing physical and mental well-being is crucial for a holistic approach to health. The winter months can be lonely and dark, often leaving newcomers with depression and isolation. On the other hand, lack of sun and reduced physical activities outdoors can lead to physical ailments. A healthy lifestyle focused on the needs of your body and mind can help you create positive experiences in the harsh Canadian winter.

Q5: What resources are available for new immigrants seeking professional help with wellness concerns?
A: Canada has a robust healthcare system, and mental health services are available in each region. You can speak to healthcare professionals or access resources provided by community organizations to address health concerns.

Practice self-care to stay healthy during the winter months

As you contemplate tips on how to stay healthy in winter- remember that self-care is a holistic initiative that spans physical, mental, and emotional well-being, and it's a crucial component of building a successful life in a new country. A secret recipe to promoting winter wellness is adopting long-term habits that contribute to a positive and healthy lifestyle.

Sometimes, understanding the challenges of the first winter and creating a pathway to well-being seem unnerving. The good news is that you will find settlement and mental health organizations in every community to guide you.

For example, Catholic Community Services of York Region has been serving newcomers for decades to help them overcome their challenges, whether with finding a job, learning English, or something more immediate like winter wellness. For more information on our services, programs, and workshops, click here.