6 in 10 Brits of us are ‘dreading’ winter due to the Covid restrictions, worrying it will be harder on their mental and physical health than ever before.

By lee medd

As a result, many are looking to other countries for wellbeing inspiration, with 35 per cent adopting the Scandinavian trend of ‘Hygge’ – to surround yourself with things which provide comfort.

Twenty-two per cent of the 2,000 adults polled will try out ‘Còsagach’ – a Scottish term meaning snug and sheltered.

While 14 per cent are going to try ‘Cwtch’ – Welsh for cubbyhole and a trend of crafting home spaces which embrace people like a hug.

One in six are inspired by the Norwegian trend of ‘Friluftsliv’ – open air and outdoor living – and a tenth are looking to the Swedish ‘Fika’ which encourages you to take time out.

The research was commissioned by Healthspan to launch new products ImmunoVit Super C and Vegan D with Zinc and B12, designed to support the immune system during darker months.

Dr Meg Arroll, a psychologist specialising in health on behalf of Healthspan, said: “We all see the pattern every winter.

“As the nights draw in and the weather gets colder, we spend less and less time outside in the daylight.

“This winter, with restrictions in place and more on the horizon this will have an effect on our mental health, but it could also affect our physical health and immunity levels due to the lack of vitamin D.”

“Also, an experimental study conducted at Pennsylvania State University found that people who feel low or in a bad mood consistently over a given day, for several days, had higher levels of inflammation in their bodies.

“This new study also shows that long-term anger and sadness can also have a direct physiological impact.

“Therefore, it’s important to first of all notice when we’re feeling chronically down in the dumps or frustrated.

“Short bouts of irritation aren’t harmful, but months and months of dreading the winter is not only unpleasant, but there is increasing evidence to show that this mindset can impair immune function, potentially leaving us less able to fight off infection.”

The OnePoll.com research also found eight in 10 adults often days where they didn’t step outside at all during daylight hours last winter.

But this year, one in four admit the lack of commute and Covid-19 restrictions means they will spend even less time outside.

Just over an hour is spent outside on working days, rising to a little more than two hours a day at the weekend.

Others believe they will see less daylight this winter due to seeing friends and family virtually (19 per cent) and doing more online shopping than in previous years (40 per cent).

But a lack of daylight leaves 44 per cent feeling more tired than usual while 33 per cent often feel unmotivated as a result.

Others feel grumpier (32 per cent), depressed (25 per cent) and even unable to function properly (15 per cent).

Dr Sarah Brewer, Healthspan medical director, said: “Prevention and self-care is key, and the UK government are also recommending that everyone takes vitamin D to help boost their overall health.

“It’s also important to look after your diet and lifestyle – get enough sleep, get physically fit and avoid excess stress.”

 Category: Lifestyle

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