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Cold & Flu Season Is Around The Corner!
Let’s prepare for it naturally! Once the kids are back in school and the weather starts to take on a crisp feel to it, we know what comes next.. Sniffles, coughs, runny nose, fevers, etc. Sick days from school and work.. An overall crummy feeling that makes us think, “Hey! Where did my care-free, summer vibrance go?!” No bueno all around. But, you’re in luck! We’ve compiled a list of proven remedies that will help you boost your immune system the healthy way! A combination of fresh seasonal foods, an abundance of water, moderate exercise, lots of SLEEP, good hygiene, reduced alcohol/sugar consumption and some tried/true alternative options that will have you feeling like an Immunity Super Hero in no time at all!
1. Fresh, Seasonal Foods – Choose immune-boosting foods. A diet of refined, processed, sugary foods is a recipe for disaster. Fast food, prepackaged meals, orange fish snacks, etc. might seem more convenient but in all actuality they are just getting your body up for lowered immunity and create a breeding zone for cold and flu germs. To build strong immune function, eat a diet rich in fresh vegetables and fruits, which provide a wide range of essential antioxidants and nutrients. Think delicious garlicky kale salads, power packed berry smoothies, even an Acai bowl or two! The immune system also depends on high-quality proteins (grass-fed organic meats, especially liver!) or wild caught Alaskan salmon (never farmed Atlantic) and healthful fats like coconut oil, avocados, especially monounsaturated fats, such as those found in extra virgin olive oil, to repair tissues and create healthy immune cells. It’s also important to reduce your intake of all types of sugars (including concentrated fruit juices) because even one serving of sugar significantly lowers immune defenses for several hours. And as always, organic and non-gmo verified are your best choices! No one wants a power packed pesticide smoothie..
2. Stay hydrated! – Drink plenty of filtered water, alkaline is best! We also suggest avoiding bottled if possible due to chemicals leached from the plastic and always stay away from fluoride, a known neurotoxin. Add a squeeze of lemon or pure lemon oil to kickstart your digestion in the morning and help put your body into alkaline mode. Bodies higher on the acidic scale are more prone to getting sick, whereas leaning more towards alkalinity tends to prevent theses bugs from sticking around!
3. ACV Bomb – Balance your pH level, lower cholesterol, cleanse your system, feel revitalized, aid in muscle repair, increase circulation, break up toxins, and boost your immunity! 1 tbsp raw, unfiltered, organic with mother Apple Cider Vinegar; Juice of one lemon; 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper; 1-2 tbsp raw, local, organic honey; 1/4 cup filtered water (optional) – Blend and drink through a straw to protect your enamel! Alternate ingredients would be cinnamon, elderberry syrup, gelatin and turmeric!
4. Supplements – Lots of Vitamin C rich citrus fruits plus extra Vitamin D drops to help absorb! A perfect immune boosting punch is Vitamin C, D, K and Magnesium. Organic Yogurt, Keifer or Probiotic supplement for gut health! Studies show that adding a daily serving of yogurt with live beneficial bacteria, such as Lactobacillus acidophilus, strengthens immune function. A supplement with 10-25 billion probiotics is an option too. good digestive system helps ward off common ailments! (Consult your naturopath or health care professional for accurate doses and as always, try to find organic brands over synthetic!)
5. Natural Hygiene – Practice good hygiene with lots of hand washing! Natural, organic soap and warm water will do the job but if you’d like an extra layer of protection, homemade sanitizer is always great! We suggest using a certified oil blend like On Guard or Theives Oil. 3 tablespoons aloe vera, 1/4 tsp vitamin E and 10 drops of Thieves mixed into a squeeze bottle (or spray bottle if aloe vera is liquid and not gel) – This blend is safe and effective, rather than conventional sanitizers which usually contain drying alcohol and even worse, tri-closan which is a known endocrine disruptor, certainly not something you want to risk using on your kids! Read more about FDA bans below – The USA is very far behind in chemical regulation, but the article below is a good start.
6. Ancient Herbs – Herbs like garlic, turmeric and cinnamon are all anti-inflammatory and help your body ward off germs. Echinacea, oil of oregano (be prepared, it’s spicy!), ginseng, and elderberry! Elderberry is a dark blue-black berry rich in compounds that disarm viruses and prevent them from taking over healthy cells. Studies show that elderberry offers significant protection against respiratory viral infections. For prevention, take 1/2 teaspoon of liquid extract or 1 teaspoon of elderberry syrup twice daily. To hasten recovery from a cold or flu, take 1 teaspoon of extract or 2 teaspoons of syrup four times a day. (Consult your naturopath or health care professional for accurate doses and as always, try to find organic brands over synthetic!)
7. Immune Boosting Teas – Chamomile has a long history of use as a nervous system soother and sleep aid. However, teas made from this herb may also enhance immune system function. The chemical compounds in chamomile may increase your body’s production of macrophages and B-lymphocytes, which are white blood cells that destroy bacteria, viruses and fungi. Green tea – Cultivating the habit of drinking green tea regularly can help strengthen immunity. Green tea contains potent antioxidant compounds that neutralize free radicals and prevent damage to the immune system. In addition, green tea stimulates the liver to secrete interferon, an immune compound that helps fight infection. To bolster immune function, drink 3 or more cups of green tea daily.
8. Kombucha – Health benefits of Kombucha tea are vast, ranging from facilitating detoxification, reducing arthritis pain, lowering cholesterol, restoring regular digestion, relief from gastric ulcers and various digestive troubles. Antioxidant-rich kombucha possess anti-microbial properties and assists in various medical conditions such as cancer and diabetes and contributes productively in maintaining cellular health and strong immune defense of the body.
9. Essential Oils for Stress Reduction – We both stiff armed the “essential oil” wave for quite awhile until realizing how truly powerful and effective these potent little health aids really are. It is like having “magic in a bottle”, an amazing way to ward off pretty much anything that could come in contact with, especially the kiddos! And we get to avoid all of the nasty chemicals found in conventional store bought products – Win/Win! There are a lot of options out there so it is important to do your research. We don’t have a specific brand that we promote, Krystal loves DoTerra and JL loves Young Living. Both have amazing blends and are 100% pure therapeutic oils. Here is a list from each company that we can’t live without!
DoTerra – OnGuard, Basil, Frankinsense, Thyme and Oregano.
Young Living – Lemon, Thieves, Immupower, Peppermint and Valor.
(We do suggest doing supplemental research depending on your individual needs.. Pregnant, nursing, diffusing for kids, and dilution ratios are all important to know. Feel free to email us if you have any questions!)
10. Bone Broth – Remember, how much better you felt after Grandmas famous chicken noodle soup on a cold or rainy day? It wasn’t just the love she put into making it.. It is truly an amazing health booster! Bone broth is rich in minerals that support the immune system and contains healing compounds like collagen, glutamine, glycine and proline. The collagen in bone broth heals your gut lining and reduces intestinal inflammation. It does wonders for arthritic pain, stronger bones and increased energy!
Add in a tasty immune boosting smoothie like the one below and you’re all set for the nasty cold and flu season! Don’t forget to tag us at #MOAMission and #InspireIgniteImpact with YOUR favorite immune boosting recipes, tips and tricks! We’d LOVE to learn more!
In good health!
Krystal & JL
Immune Boosting Orange Pumpkin Smoothie –
Its not truly fall until we bring out the pumpkin! Boasting plenty of beta carotene and both Vitamin A and C (great for immunity), this smoothie also contains cinnamon, ginger and turmeric, all of which act as anti-inflammatory agents in the body, among many other benefits. The combination also adds a warm, spicy undertone that complements the sweetness of the pumpkin perfectly. Orange juice adds plenty of Vitamin C and extra immune-boosting benefits to help ward off any stubborn colds this winter.
1 cup organic pumpkin puree
2 medium ripe banana, previously sliced and frozen
1 Tbsp almond butter (optional)
1/4 tsp each ground turmeric, cinnamon, and ginger (if using fresh ginger, use 1 tsp chopped)
1/2 Tbsp flaxseed meal or chia seeds
3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk (organic, carrageenan free!)
1/4 cup organic (preferably fresh!) orange juice (optional)
Large handful ice
We are just two regular mamas who are on a mission to find a balance of passion, purpose and health for ourselves and our loved ones. We want to humbly share our own experiences and personal journeys in hopes of inspiring others to do the same. Ultimately, we are on a quest to help people be the best versions of themselves while impacting the world by directly funding pediatric cancer research to find a cure for every child battling this horrible disease.