Four Ways to Fight the Flu

I’ve been sick as a dog this past week!

IMG_0215

Not that dog- she’s pretty happy and healthy.

It’s November 10th and we’re in the thick of flu season. Coworkers are falling like flies around us- myself included.

river

Make sure you’ve got your best defenses up with these natural remedies:

Get your Z’s! 

You’ve heard it before- here’s why it’s important. When you sleep, your immune system lets out cytokines, or certain proteins. You need more cytokines when you’re sick to help fight infection, so you need to up your sleep. Even just a 20 minute nap during the day can give your body a protein boost.

IMG_0025

Amp up your veggie game

You’re looking to get vitamins A, C, and zinc into your diet. Reach for sweet potatoes, pumpkin, carrots, spinach, citrus fruits, bell peppers, cauliflower, beans, chickpeas, kale, cashews, and almonds.

Fight stress

Stress can wreak havoc on our physical and mental wellness. Sleep loss, upset stomach, headaches, nausea, depression, muscle pains, and over/under eating can all be symptoms of stress. This is a great time of year to take up yoga or meditation, learn a breathing exercise, work on your fitness routine, or schedule more time to hang out with friends -even if they’re just the furry kind.

IMG_0201

Try not to fight stress with other crutches- alcohol, junk food, TV. These may provide temporary relief but only add to your stress in the long run.

Lay off the sugar

I know you don’t want to hear it- the holidays are just around the corner! Hot cocoa, candy canes, cakes, pie, truffles, COOKIES.

IMG_9638

I don’t want to hear it either. Anyone who knows me knows I have a pretty big sweet tooth. But sugar can cause serious wreckage to your immune system. Here’s why:

“Sugar has been shown to inhibit the immune system by preventing movement of white blood cells, your immune cells, to the area of infection. Sugar also prevents a particular type of white blood cell from eating up viruses and other bugs to manage infection.” -Today Integrative Health + Wellenss.

Limit your sweets- they should really be an occasional treat, not an every day guarantee. Keeping a food journal or using an app like Lift is a great way to keep tabs on your cravings. Many recipes can be modified to use half the sugar recommended and still be delicious, or you can try subbing in natural sweeteners like bananas, raw honey, or berries.

What are your go-to tricks for staying healthy during the colder months? Leave a comment below.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s