As the cold weather nears it’s the perfect time to bump up immunity.
Immune health is highly influenced by stress so look at where you can take the load off. Stress can be emotional, nutritional, physical, chemical and more. The body does not know the difference; it just has a stress response and over-produces hormones such as cortisol and adrenalin. This can lead to fatigue, muscle breakdown and poor digestion.
If the immune system is over-worked it will make the body feel tired in a bid to conserve energy and try to recover.
Some 80% of the immune system is housed in the gut, so if you have problems there you will suppress immunity.
Taking a high quality probiotic will help you in many ways.
If you are eating poor quality or processed foods, or foods that you are intolerant to, this will over stimulate the immune system and can lead to chronic fatigue. This makes it hard to recover from injuries, exercise or other stresses.
Ways to help
• The slow cooker is one of the most convenient and nourishing ways to prepare winter soups and casseroles. You can use cheaper cuts of meat such as neck, shoulder bones or shanks. The bones are full of minerals, marrow and glucosamine, which in turn is great for your bones and gut health. Boiling up bones into a broth is the perfect way to make soups and stews. Any left overs can be frozen for next time.
• Vitamin C is a well-known remedy for the common cold and immune health. In his book Doctor Yourself, Dr Andrew Saul treats just about every ill with large doses of vitamin C, among other vitamins and minerals. His mantra is “Take enough ‘C’ to be symptom free, what ever that amount may be.” He goes on to say this is to bowel tolerance – as much as you can take before loose stools. Whole food vitamins A to E and zinc all help immune health.
• Try fresh lemon, ginger or both in boiling water with a touch of honey as a hot drink and winter health booster.
• This is the time for saunas; treat yourself to a regular massage and then sit in the sauna and drink lots of clean filtered water.
• Putting a pinch of sea salt in water can help with electrolyte replacement. This is a great way to clean up your body. The solution for pollution is dilution.
• Hibernate – get more rest in the winter months. Early to bed is a good way to ensure quality sleep. Magnesium will help you sleep deeply.
• Throw out your microwave: this method of food preparation is devastating to immune health
• Put a filter on your bath or shower – the chlorine in a hot steamy bath or shower is absorbed straight through your skin and into your organs.