During the transition of seasons, it’s common that many people get colds or experience cold-like symptoms as the weather is changing. This is completely normal as the weather is warming up the body is going through a period of transition and adaptation and sometimes the immune system ends up being lowered as a result. There are however, many ways to keep your immune system healthy and avoid catching any colds with a few simple tweaks to your diet and lifestyle.
What you eat is very important to how your body runs, food has a direct impact on our overall health and vitality so if we are fuelling ourselves with processed, sugar filled, chemical filled products we definitely aren’t going to be feeling our best and our body’s won’t be functioning it’s best either.
Focus on adding in more whole foods, add more of the good foods in and naturally begin to crowd out the more processed “boxed foods”. Focus on whole fruits and vegetables, potatoes, root veggies, whole grains, beans, legumes, lentils, nuts, seeds. Be creative with new recipes of your favourite classic dishes.
Add in more fruits and veggies, similar to the point above but it deserves a separate mention. Fruits and vegetables are EXTREMELY important for our immune function. Aim to add in 9-13 servings everyday and more if you are active. Focus on antioxidant and vitamin C rich fruits and vegetables such as dark berries, oranges, strawberries, kiwi, brussel sprouts, broccoli etc.. to help ensure I get the recommended amount of high quality, organic, vine-ripened produce every single day I also add in a whole food supplement called Juice Plus. Link below if you are curious as to how it can help bridges the gap in your nutrition. Plus they are in a capsule (vegan) which makes them easy to take everyday.
Add in foods rich in zinc everyday. Zinc is very important for your immune system to function its best! Foods rich in zinc include beans, lentils, cacao, nuts, seeds, more specifically pumpkin seeds. I aim to add in a small handful of pumpkin seeds to my diet daily.
Get enough rest, this one should be common sense but so many people push it aside as if it’s not important but let me tell you…IT IS! When your body doesn’t get enough good quality deep sleep it doesn’t have enough time to repair and restore your body from the day before. This directly affects your immune system as well which is why we feel so down sometimes when we dont get enough sleep. Ask for at least 7-8 hours per night, try and create a relaxing bed time ritual and avoid using your phone/looking at any screens before bed if you can.
Oregano oil, this stuff is a lifesaver for colds and flus. If you are beginning to feel run down or are around other people who are sick take a few drops of oregano oil a few times per day to keep your immune system healthy and to fight off the germs.
If you are beginning to feel run down, dont push yourself with a tough workout. Your body needs rest when it’s feeling down so honour that and let it rest until you feel better.
Add in anti-inflammatory foods and immune boosting ingredients such as fresh ginger, turmeric, lemon and garlic. You can juice them, add them to smoothies (I wouldn’t recommend garlic in smoothies however) or add them into hot water as a tea and have frequently.
Chaga mushroom tea is a fantastic add in during the transition of the seasons. It’s loaded in antioxidants and is one of the best immune boosters out there! You can add the powder to smoothies or make tea with it.
Stay active if you are feeling good, exercise actually helps improve your immune system over time plus it will make you feel good! Do whatever you love to do to keep active and do it consistently.
Add in a lot of liquids to stay hydrated if you are beginning to feel run down, simple soups with anti-inflammatory ingredients, tea, water, coconut water, smoothies, fresh pressed juices.