Boost Your Immune System
With the cold and flu season in full swing it’s more important than ever to keep you immune system healthy. I spend so much time in airplanes that I research everything I can to avoid getting sick.
What you eat is always the first line of defense in staying healthy. Many foods have immunity building qualities:
Avocados contain amino acids to support adrenal health.
Garlic contains allicin which fights infection and bacteria.
Mushrooms increase production and activity of white blood cells which help fight off infection.
Fresh organic cruciferous vegetables such as kale, broccoli, lettuce and cabbage help the liver to flush out toxins.
Fresh ginger can help break down toxins in the organs and also help to cleanse the lymphatic system.
Citrus fruits contain hefty doses of vitamin C which can help to reduce cold symptoms by 23%.
Oats and Barley contain beta-glucan, a type of fiber with antimicrobial and antioxidant properties.
Sugar and high fructose corn syrup are the enemy. They can impair the effectiveness of our immune cells so as soon as you feel a cold coming on cut them out of your diet. Try using honey or stevia instead. Honey has antioxidant and antimicrobial properties to help fight infections from viruses and bacteria.
Probiotics may be the BEST way to enhance your immunity. Probiotics are healthy bacteria that keep the intestinal tract free of disease causing germs. So much of our overall health is tied to our digestive system. Probiotics can be found in fermented foods such as yogurt and kefir. Be sure to include one or two servings daily. You can also get probiotic supplements at most stores these days.
Skip the germ killing soaps. This was a tough one for me since I was addicted to using anti-bacterial hand soaps.Triclosan, the key ingredient in many antibacterial hand soaps fuels the growth of antibiotic-resistant bugs in the general population. This can hurt you by setting up your body for a secondary super-infection. Stick to killing germs by frequent hand washing and switch to an alcohol based hand sanitizer.
Besides soothing your throat, teas are loaded with powerful antioxidants. Both green and black contain disease-fighting polyphenols and flavonoids.Two of the most beneficial are green teas and matcha. Elderberry syrup when used in the first 48 hous has shown to relieve flu symptoms up to four days faster. You can take 1 tablespoon daily during flu season as a preventative.
Moms have know for years that chicken soup is good for you and studies are proving them right. Along with being warm and comforting, studies have shown that chicken soup may have anti-inflammatory properties to help relieve cold symptoms. Chicken soup also helps you to stay hydrated and it is packed with electrolytes which helps to retain more fluids than water.