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Nutrition Tips Winter 2015

Children who have meals with their family not only eat better and are healthier; they learn to socialize and do better in school. Family meals give a time and place to keep up with what is going on with everyone, help each other out, and tell family stories. Enjoying family meals help to keep food in its place as only one of life's great pleasures. Pay attention to the food and enjoy it when it is time to eat, forget about it between times. A rushed morning without breakfast can make eating well challenging. Try these quick breakfast ideas: http://tinyurl.com/nn6b95d A long afternoon commute can make eating well challenging. Pack a snack for the afternoon before your ride so you aren’t over hungry when you get home. Healthy food choices at home and at school can help students do better in school and be healthier over all. Part of learning about healthy eating is practicing. If your children’s’ school does not teach food preparation, ask your school administration how you can help to support offering classes. Snack foods like chips, candy, and pop fill children up, but don’t supply any of the nutrition they need to grow and learn. These foods should not be offered in school. Help the school community council and school administration in your children’s school to promote healthy foods in the school.

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Cold weather tips

Seven steps to cold weather safety

Winter weather has arrived in much of the country. Do you know the signs of hypothermia, and what to do if you get frostbite? Read on to make sure you're ready for cold weather!

1) Listen to the weather forecast

  • Check the Environment Canada weather forecast before going out.
  • Listen for a wind chill warning. Warnings are based on local climate and are issued when significant wind chills are expected.
  • Visit Environment Canada's new Weather and Meteorology website: http://ec.gc.ca/meteo-weather/

Weather forecasts are available through radio and TV broadcasts, Environment Canada's Weatheradio service, and online at www.weatheroffice.gc.ca.

2) Plan ahead

  • Develop a cold weather safety plan in advance to ensure that safety concerns are addressed when it's very cold, or when the wind chill is significant. For example, schools could hold recess indoors, outside workers could schedule warm-up breaks, and those involved in winter recreation could reduce the amount of time they spend outdoors.

3) Dress warmly

  • Dress in layers, with a wind resistant outer layer.
  • When it is cold, wear a hat, mittens or insulated gloves. Keep your face warm with a scarf, neck tube or facemask.
  • Wear warm and waterproof footwear. When it is very cold, or when the wind chill is significant, cover as much exposed skin as possible. Your body's extremities, such as the ears, nose, fingers and toes lose heat the fastest.

4) Seek shelter

  • When the wind chill is significant, get out of the wind and limit the time you spend outside.

5) Stay dry

  • Wet clothing chills the body rapidly.
  • Remove outer layers of clothing or open your coat if you are sweating.

6) Keep active

  • Walking or running will help warm you by generating body heat.

7) Be aware

  • Watch for signs of frostbite and hypothermia (see below).
  • Some people are more susceptible to the cold, particularly children, the elderly and those with circulation problems.

Check on elderly relatives and neighbours to ensure they are warm enough and have sufficient supplies, particularly when the weather is cold or snowy. They might not feel comfortable going Hypothermia

  • Being cold over a prolonged period of time can cause a drop in body temperature
  • Shivering, confusion and loss of muscular control (e.g., difficulty walking) can occur.
  • It can progress to a life-threatening condition where shivering stops or the person loses consciousness. Cardiac arrest may occur.

What to do:

  • Get medical attention immediately.
  • Lay the person down and avoid rough handling, particularly if the person is unconscious.
  • Get the person indoors.
  • Gently remove wet clothing.
  • Warm the person gradually and slowly, using available sources of heat.

Frostbite

  • A more severe condition, where both the skin and the underlying tissue (fat, muscle, bone) are frozen.
  • Skin appears white and waxy and is hard to the touch.
  • No sensation - the area is numb or tingling.

What to do:

  • Frostbite can be serious, and can result in amputation. Get medical help!
  • Do not rub or massage the area.
  • Do not warm the area until you can ensure it will stay warm.
  • Warm the area gradually; use body heat, or warm water (40°C to 42°C). Avoid direct heat which can burn the skin.

These tips have been brought to you by Environment Canada in collaboration with Public Safety Canada. http://www.getprepared.gc.ca/cnt/rsrcs/sfttps/tp201101-eng.aspx

More information is available here:  

Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety http://www.ccohs.ca/

Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/hl-vs/iyh-vsv/environ/cold-extreme-froid-eng.php

Winter storm preparation http://www.redcross.org/prepare/disaster/winter-storm

Cold Weather safety tips http://www.redcross.ca/who-we-are/red-cross-stories/2014/staying-safe-and-warm-during-winter-weather