I am so in love with the holiday season! Yummy and rich food, delicious wine, quality time with friends and family, playing in the snow… but it also comes with a fair share of health stressors: colder temperature outside, cold and flu season, excess food and drink, more sugar, less exercise, late nights… you know them all.
If you often spend the end of your winter holidays sick in bed, today’s post is for you.
I invite you to upgrade your nutrition and help your body detox naturally, so you can regain balance and boost your immune system.
“Let’s look at easy, natural ways to strengthen our immune system and ensure we jump start the new year with optimal health”
1. Eat A Healthy Whole Foods Diet
Turn to Mother Nature to source foods with high nutrition power. Choose organic, local, unprocessed, seasonal and fresh foods. As a farmer once told me, “eating from the land is the best way to strengthen your immunity”.
Foundational foods include:
- Fresh Leafy Greens & Colorful Veggies
- Local Fruits & Berries
- Whole Grains (non-gluten)
- Naturally-raised Protein-rich Foods (plant/animal)
- Unrefined Fats & Oils
- Natural Seasonings
2. Avoid Processed Sugar
White sugar offers empty calories, is highly inflammatory and disrupts all your body functions, including the immune system: just a teaspoon of refined white sugar has been shown to suppress your immune system for up to 5 hours!
3. Consume Probiotic-Rich Fermented Foods
One of the best ways to boost immunity is to introduce naturally fermented foods into your diet. The probiotics (beneficial bacteria) found in fermented foods are far more effective and bio-available than any supplement.
Examples of probiotic power foods:
- Unpasteurized apple cider vinegar
- Naturally preserved fruits or chutney
- Unpasteurized sauerkraut
- Live culture plain whole yogurt
- Whole milk or coconut Kefir
4. Support Your Body’s Natural Detoxification Systems
After the holidays, it’s very common for our bodies for feel blocked or rundown. Stimulating toxin removal is a great way to feel lighter and strengthen our immune system.
Examples of Detoxifying Foods:
- Green foods (leafy greens & seaweeds)
- Fresh ginger and turmeric
- Boiled water with lemon slices
- Wild berries (elderberry)
5. Get Plenty of Sleep and Reduce Stress
Stress and lack of sleep are probably the immune system’s worst enemies. Finding ways to manage stress and getting long, uninterrupted nights of sleep is essential to recover from excess, restore, rejuvenate and protect our bodies from external aggressors.
Great ways to reduce stress:
- Practice yoga, either at your studio or at home, with The Yoga Collective videos.
- Practice deep breathing regularly during the day
- Go to bed early
- Disconnect electronics 1 hour before going to bed
- Practice meditation or take some time to relax before going to bed, in order to allow your body to wind down
Health is about BALANCE. After excess, it’s time to let your body enjoy some rest and recovery. Allow your body to restore by giving it some extra tender, loving care and you’ll feel rested, rejuvenated and excited to meet January in optimal power.
Happy New Year!
Yours in balance,