Tips for preventing the common cold
The dead of winter has arrived and brought flu season with it. You might have noticed people all around the office, at the store and maybe even at home are suffering from a cold. Not to worry, I have some great immune boosting foods and habits that will help you kick flu season in the butt!
Prevent getting that dreaded winter cold by supporting your immune system and flooding your body with nutrients. Probiotic rich foods and alkalinizing fruits and vegetables are the key to fighting infection and keeping your immune system strong.
Our body is made up of more bacteria cells than human cells which makes its extremely important to support the production of good bacteria and starve the bad. One of the best ways to achieve this is by supporting probiotic consumption and reducing acidity through decreased sugar, grain and red meat consumption.
Certain foods have been shown to support our immune system, therefore preventing colds and flu from taking over our body. These foods all help promote an alkaline body and support beneficial bacteria with probiotics. This info. graphic will help summarize some of the beneficial foods.
Immune Boosting Foods:
- Garlic – It is anti-microbial and anti-bacterial. It’s active ingredient, allicin, helps fight infection and kill bacteria. Garlic is also great for unplugging those sinuses. Try to have garlic in its raw state for the best benefits.
- Citrus – Fruits like lemons, oranges and grapefruit contain loads of vitamin C. This powerful antioxidant helps to reduce cold symptoms and make you feel human again. However, I do not recommend getting your vitamin C from the processed orange juice found in the grocery store. Put your thumbs to work and peal a real orange or dive into a grapefruit.
- Zinc – essential for normal immune function, it is necessary for the prevention of colds and flu. Try adding pumpkin seeds to salads or having a trail mix. Also try adding oysters, dark chocolate, and lamb to your diet.
- Ginger – this incredible root is perfect for healing a scratchy throat and suppressing that nasty cough. It contains sesquiterpenes, a chemical which targets the common cold virus. Add some ginger to boiling water and lemon slices for a delicious immune supporting tea.
- Honey – anti-microbial and contains antioxidants which help fight infection and strengthen the immune system. Take a tsp for a natural solution to a sore throat, the honey will provide a coating that will sooth the pain in no time. * don’t give honey to children under the age of one, their immune systems are not quit mature enough to defend botulism.
- Probiotics – foods rich in probiotics such as kombucha, kimchi and kefir help to support gut function and fight the invasion of bad bacteria. Probiotics can also be found in supplement form for higher concentration.
- Tea – herbal teas have been shown to help fight infection and the warmth helps to sooth your throat.
- Water – staying hydrated is essential for supporting proper immune function. Dehydration slows down your immune system making it less efficient in fighting infection and bacteria.
Food is not the only answer to supporting our immune system. We also have to manage our stress levels and support our sleep habits.
- Take 10 deep breaths whenever you feel stressed or anxious. This helps to calm your nervous system and reduce the stress response.
- Do yoga or meditate to help relax your mind and body
- Go to bed before 11 and get 9 hours of rest
- Sleep in a completely dark room. use an eye mask to block nay light from alarm clocks, TV’s, or street lights.
Give these immune boosting foods and lifestyle tips a try and prevent the dreaded cold.