Almost everyone I know is sick themselves, has been sick recently, is coming down with sickness, or knows someone else who’s sick. It’s really quite frightening when you think about it. All those germs out there, just floating around infesting everyone with nasty colds, bothersome flus, or other maladies.
I myself haven’t fallen prey to the dreaded flu yet…I hope I can say that all winter long! I think the biggest thing people can do right now in the midst of a world of sickness is to prevent it from happening before it can strike them sniffling in their tracks. So what are we to do to fend off “the bug?” Below are a few simple tips. No, they’re not brand new strategies or reinventions of the wheel. Just some basic ideas that really work.
- Eat a colorful diet: try to eat as many colors of the rainbow each day as you can. Fruits and vegetables, packed with vitamins and minerals that fight viruses from A to Z, are your best bet at giving your body proper nourishment. Go for reds, blues, greens, yellows, oranges. Pack in the color wherever you can! Vitamins and minerals are bug-busters for sure, but fiber also helps keep the system “cleaned out” (if you know what I mean) and free of toxins.
- Get enough zinc: this mineral is notorious for boosting immunity and strengthening the body’s reserve system. Zinc is found in a variety of foods including fruits/veggies, whole grains, nuts, and seeds. It’s also plentiful in seafood and some meats. High quality zinc supplements can also be purchased at natural food stores or Whole Foods Market. Supplement with 15-30 mg per day to give your body a fighting chance.
- Drink lots of water: and I mean lots! Here’s a simple calculation to help you figure out how much you need each day: divide your body weight (in pounds) in half. Drink that number in ounces per day. For example: if you weigh 150 pounds, drink 75 ounces of water or approximately 9 1/2 cups.
- Exercise: regular movement gives your lymph system a kick in the you-know-where. The lymph system works on flushing toxins out of the body, therefore removing harmful bacteria, viruses, and germs.
- Get some ZZZs: strive for 8-9 hours of sleep per night, or more if you find yourself tired. It’s unbelievable how much repair and restoration the body does during periods of rest. Good sleep is critical to keeping your body on the top of it’s game, energized and ready to fight whatever comes it’s way.
- Stress LESS: stress plays a huge role in your body’s immune defense system. When under stress, the body will become weaker when it comes to fighting off “the bug” and you’ll be more susceptible to getting sick. Toning down your schedule, practicing daily “quiet time” or meditation, setting aside time for unrushed meals, or going for an afternoon walk in the sunshine can all help de-clutter the brain and relieve stress. Do whatever works for you, just be sure to find outlets that relieve your stress and allow some time for bodily relaxation.
Those are just a few tips to get you started. I hope they help both you and me stay healthy this winter season! I’ll be posting more tips on colorful eating, reducing stress, and other related topics in the coming weeks so keep your eyes open! Until next time, keep eating well, loving life, and staying healthy!
(This post is linked up to Food Renegade’s Fight Back Fridays.)