During a time of stress and disruption of usual, healthy eating habits, we see a lot of colds and flu. We allow our immunity to drop just a bit, and we give bacteria and viruses a way into our system.
The steps you can take to boost immunity in your family are very simple. Maybe not as simple as taking a pill labelled “Prevents colds and flu,” but you know that wouldn’t really work anyway.
Build and maintain health for your whole family through basic habits. You just need to understand what your body needs and provide that. You are more likely to get sick when you are bending your basic rules of healthy living.
Sleep. Your first and most important step to improved health is getting enough sleep. It really is that simple. Read more about sleeping for health.
Nutrition. What you eat matters. Eating whole, unprocessed foods in the right balance gives your body what it needs to function well and fight off seasonal invaders. Which foods? Read more about how to boost your immunity with foods.
Physical Activity. Your physical activity is a factor in your ability to fight off infection. You know you need to be active, but how active for how long? Read more about guidelines for physical activity for adults and children.
Manage Stress. All of us have stress, even very young children. Your choice is in how you manage the stress. We wrote about how you can avoid the immune-suppression of stress through the mind-body connection.
Have Fun. Does it seem odd to include fun in prevention of illness? Laughter does help. In part, it helps you manage stress, but your happiness is a bigger part of the fabric of health you are weaving. Read more about how to help your family stay healthy.
Quick List for Cold & Flu Prevention
Beyond the solutions above for general health, you can give your immunity a boost during these months when bacteria and viruses are being passed around so much.
Raw Garlic. Don’t just add garlic to your cooking (though do that for the taste); eat garlic raw. Chop up or crush 1-2 cloves and either drink in warm water or add to food just before you are ready to eat it. An antiviral compound in raw garlic, allicin, blocks infections.
Apple Cider Vinegar. Drink a tablespoon of organic, apple cider vinegar in water to create an alkaline environment in your body, an environment where bacteria and viruses have a more difficult time surviving.
Vitamin D. Canada’s Food Guide has recognized that vitamin D is the only nutrient for which adults over 50 cannot rely on diet alone to receive their recommended daily dose. We sell Ddrops because of their therapeutic benefits.
Warm Drinks. In my family, we start with a base of chicken broth, ginger tea, or some other basic tea. We add honey, lemon, garlic, ginger, turmeric, and other spices to create what we call immuni-tea. The warm liquid and the ingredients both help boost immunity. My mother’s version was always hot water with lemon juice and a teaspoon of honey. Create your own version as an easy way to take in some of the basic cold and flu fighting foods.
If you don’t manage to fight off cold or flu, you have natural choices to treat the symptoms. We love elderberry syrup, so we carry Sambucol black elderberry extract.
Image © Kmiragaya | Dreamstime.com