I am so over this cold weather. As I write this column, we are a few days into spring and there is still snow on the ground. Ugh. With two kids under the age of 3, getting outdoors with this cold is a pain in the neck so we have had to get creative around the house.
However, there is light at the end of the tunnel. Before we know it, we will be outdoors more, grilling and playing in the backyard. I can’t wait!
Cabin fever is not great for our health. It can lead to depression. When we are not feeling 100 percent mentally, it starts to take a toll on our health and may lead to poor habits like overeating and negative thinking.
Here are my tips for handling cabin fever:
• Clean and reorganize the house. If you are stuck indoors, make your house more welcoming and get rid of clutter. Make a few changes around your house like rearranging decorations, putting out different toys for the kids, moving furniture around, etc. Change leads to a feeling of new beginnings, which just makes you feel better.
•Have healthy snacks on hand. When I get sad and depressed, I want chocolate. So, I try not to have too much chocolate in the house or I will eat it all. Healthy snacks like avocados, carrot sticks and hummus, rice crackers, etc. will help with the depression snacking. Make my dairy-free banana “ice cream.” See the recipe below.
• Pretend it is spring. My 3-year-old and I made flowers out of paper the other day for our craft time and we pretended it was spring and we were walking through a flower garden. Have an indoor picnic with your kids. A positive attitude does amazing things to our health.
• Exercise. No one ever regrets exercising. So many of us put it on the back burner in the cold, winter months. Find ways to fit it in. Take a walk outside in the cold. Join a gym. Do it. It is critical for good health.
• Get outside anyway, despite the cold. So many things can be fixed with some fresh air, bright light and a walk. Even though it is cold, I have bundled up my 4-month-old and ventured outside for a few minutes.
Dairy free banana ‘ice cream’
4 frozen bananas (peel bananas and freeze in a plastic bag or foil)
A few splashes of coconut milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
Dairy-free mini-chocolate chips, fresh fruit, chopped nuts, etc. for toppings
Blend until smooth. Top with any toppings you desire.