As Autumn settles in and the nights get darker our health can take a bit of a downturn.
With the changing season comes cold, cough, fever and other infectious diseases that attack our immune system. In order to treat these infections, we load our body with antibiotics. As antibiotics work against bacteria, rather than viruses, they will be ineffective at treating colds and flus.
As with most things, prevention is better than cure, so looking after ourselves with healthy food, regular exercise and rest could be our best armoury for winter wellness.
A hot drink of honey with lemon and ginger is well known to help soothe coughs and sore throats, but there are other foods that could help support our immune system too.
Include as many different coloured fruits and vegetables into your diet as possible. Packed with antioxidant nutrients to help support the immune system, the more colour on our plates, the better.
Keep yourself well hydrated. In colder weather it can be more difficult to remember to drink enough water. Adequate hydration is important for immune support.
Turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties. Drinking turmeric ginger tea or only including them in your diet helps boost immunity.
Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties. Garlic and onions have immune balancing effects and contain an active ingredient called allicin, which has been found to have anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties. Eating raw garlic in the morning gives a boost to your immunity.
Build up immune defences by adding some cultured or fermented foods into your diet. Packed with ‘good bacteria’, also known as probiotics, these foods are a vital part of immune defence. Kimchi, sauerkraut, yoghurt and kombucha are all worth a try.
Getting enough sleep will help if you get hit with a cold. Go to bed early and aim for eight to 10 hours rest to strengthen your immune system.
CONCLUSION: Consider the power of the food on your plate. The more variety we can eat the better, so pack your plate with foods to help support your immune system like green leafy vegetables, orange coloured fruit and vegetables, onions, garlic, turmeric, ginger and eat your way to a winter of good health.