Prevent Colds, Flu’s or Any Other Bugs
They say the average adult gets 2 to 3 colds each year. If you want to avoid being the average adopt some of these simple strategies and you can reduce your susceptibility, protect yourself and your family.
1. Keep your gut healthy
As about 80% of your immune system is in your ‘gut’, it’s essential to keep this healthy.
A healthy gut maintains a balance between beneficial and pathogenic bacteria of about 85 percent ‘good’ to 15 percent ‘bad’.
To maintain a healthy GUT eat mostly fresh, high fiber, raw fruits, nuts, and vegetables, especially greens. This promotes a slightly alkaline (pH 7.2 to 7.4) inner terrain that discourages pathogenic bacteria from thriving.
Focus on eating fermented foods like – sauerkraut or take a daily probiotic supplement which will provide your gut with beneficial bacteria to keep it healthy.
2. Load Up On Fruits and Vegetables
Ensure you fresh fruit & vegetables – at least 8-10 portions a day. Why? They contain loads of antioxidants that help your body fight off colds/flu and all other illnesses.
So for example sweet potatoes or carrots are loaded with carotene, which your body either turns into Vitamin A or uses as antioxidants. There are also plenty of other fruits and vegetables that will help bolster your immune system – anything with high antioxidants like beta-carotenes and vitamins C and E are going to help.
This table shows you which foods are high in which Vitamins for stronger immune systems:-
|Vitamin C||Beta-carotene||Vitamin E|
|Mustard and turnip greens
Every day, try to eat the following items:
· A large salad with lettuce and other greens, tomatoes and raw vegetables, or ensure that both lunch and dinner include a large salad or a cooked green vegetable and add mushrooms, garlic and onions.
· One serving of beans/legumes, try them in a soup.
· At least three pieces of fresh fruit (strawberries, pomegranate, cherries, plums, citrus e.g. oranges).
· A handful of nuts and seeds.
· Large serving of green vegetables.
· Eat more white protein (chicken, fish, turkey ) and oily fish and try to keep animal products to a minimum
– Avoid processed, cured or barbecued meats.
3. Avoid Sugar!!!
This is big one as sugar suppresses your immune system. This is because sugar limits the amount of bacteria your white blood cells can defend against. Though research supporting this theory has been published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. If you do struggle with a sweet tooth – use some simple tricks like eating more cinnamon. Literally dip your finger in some and do this every time. Plus cinnamon is as it happens loaded with antioxidants.
4. Avoid Stress
Stress weakens our immune systems, when you’re stressed your body releases stress hormones that suppress the effectiveness of the immune system. The more stressed you are, the more stress hormones are released, and the likelier you are to get sick. Do whatever you can to reduce your stress levels – get enough sleep, get enough exercise (which is itself a great way to reduce stress), meditate regularly to relax and still your thoughts, and reserve some time to have fun once in a while. Try adaptogen herbs, nature’s amazing answer to stress relief.
5. Keep moving (especially when your don’t have a cold)
Exercise can keep you from getting sick by stimulating the immune cells that target cold infections. A University of South Carolina study found that people who walked or did other moderate activity for 30 minutes most days averaged one cold per year, while less-active folks reported more than four colds per year.
Don’t overdo it: Heavy exertion—like marathon training—may increase your risk of catching seasonal bugs, perhaps because it can stress the body’s systems, allowing viruses to gain a foothold.
Get into the habit and add these 5 steps to your routine because you can prevent illness or most definelty reduce your chances of getting ill.
I’ve really made a conscious effort of making sure I clean the shopping trolleys handles or my hands afterwards, as a simple thing like washing your hands regularly when you’re out can reduce your exposure. Of course, eating right and getting enough sleep really do make a difference. If you do one step further you can add herbal extracts and vitamins to your daily routine to help you avoid getting sick.
Because my husband and I are both self-employed, we don’t get days off sick. So, we have extra incentive to stay healthy.
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