Winter is Coming: Boost Your Immune System
That’s right folks. Wave good bye to the happy days of crunching through piles of fallen foliage and joyfully sipping a hot latté as you stroll through the park. The season of a billion sneezes, sniffles and coughs is upon us. We’ve made this handy guide to bolster your immune boosting arsenal for this winter. We’ve heard of most of these healthy hacks at one time or another, but it’s always helpful to see them all together along with a few uncommon remedies mixed in.
- Get 7 to 8 hours of sleep a day: Priority numero uno.
- Consume Vitamin C: Eat citrus fruits, berries, kiwis, bell peppers and dark green leafy vegetables
- Exercise: We know, we know. It’s cold outside and you want to binge watch TV. Get your bum to the gym be it in raining, sleeting or snowing
- Throw dried chopped up astragalus into your soup: This root activates white blood cells in the body and aids in fighting viruses
- Drink tons of water: Water helps to produce lymph, a colorless fluid that contains white blood cells and bathes your body's tissues through the lymphatic system
- Get your garlic on: Garlic contains allicin, a substance that helps in fighting viruses
- Cut back on sugar: Sweets have been shown to lower the body’s ability to fend off bacteria and viruses. The same goes for starches, caffeine and alcohol
- Herbs and spices over everything: These guys are packed with immune boosting properties. Try to incorporate some of these into your cooking: ginger, cayenne pepper, curry, oregano, turmeric, allspice and black peppercorn.
Have yourself some healthy bacteria: Intake probiotics. See our article on the benefits of probiotics and where to get yours.
Don’t let your Vitamin D levels dip too low: Those of us stuck in the office during the winter tend to not get enough immune boosting Vitamin D due to lack of sunlight. You can get your D from natural sources including egg yolks, fatty fish and organ meats. You can also take a D3 supplement, recommended dose being 1,000iu per 25lbs of body weight.
Are you already feeling a cold coming on? Try this old school remedy known as fire cider. It includes garlic, horseradish, onions, and hot peppers infused with vinegar. You can also feel free to throw in other herbs and spices to give it an extra kick. It’s a potent punch that can be consumed in a bunch of different ways and used to fight back the common cold.