Articles

Articles

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Food & Diet

Why not add the following to your diet? Variety in diet is very important to ensure that you get the benefit of all the different food groups.

Citrus

Vitamin C helps to build up your immune system which is why this is usually the first ingredient people turn to when they catch a cold.  Your body does not store or produce Vitamin C therefore you need a constant supply for continued health.  All citrus fruits are good sources of Vitamin C.

Berries

Berries like blueberries, blackberries, cranberries, cherries are rich in the anti-oxidant anthocyanin which gives it their colour.  They also tend to be high in fiber and vitamin C.

Red Bell Peppers

By eating these you give yourself a big boost of beta carotene.  This is the anti- oxidant found in most yellow and orange vegetables and fruits.  Beta carotene is converted in your body to vitamin A, which plays an important part in keeping your eyes, skin and mucous membranes healthy.  Your mucus membranes are usually the first point of contact between your body and germs.

Vitamin A is also proven to help with regulation of the immune system.

Red bell peppers also contain at least twice as much vitamin C than citrus.

Spinach & Green Vegetables

Spinach, Broccoli, Kale and Brussels sprouts are rich in Vitamins A, C and E and is packed with anti-oxidants and beta carotene.

These are healthiest when cooked as little as possible to retain its nutrients.

Papaya or Paw Paw

Papayas also contain large amounts of vitamin C and is rich in potassium, folate and B vitamins all of which plays an important role in the functioning of your immune system.  Papain is a digestive enzyme found in papayas with anti- inflammatory properties.

Ginger

Ginger is a natural anti-inflammatory which can help reduce a sore throat and other forms of inflammation.   Ginger is very effective to help fight nausea.  It also promotes sweating and as such drinking ginger tea is good way to keep warm.   Make ginger tea at home by steeping 20-40g of fresh ginger in a cup of hot water.   Add a slice of lemon for the additional benefits of citrus.

Garlic

Garlic was recognized for its ability to fight infections by most early civilizations and is found as an integral part of most traditional diets around the world. Garlic contains allicin which has been shown to have antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties. 

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DE-STRESS

We know that stress is not good for our mental and emotional health. Stress causes our bodies to release cortisol. Constantly high levels of cortisol actually lower your immune response, making it difficult for your body to fight infections.

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GET ENOUGH SLEEP

While you sleep your body repairs itself. Your immune system is especially active during the time that you sleep. Messengers of the immune system stimulate the production of white blood cells that have the ability to target bacteria and viruses. Sleeping provides much-needed rest for your mind and helps to boost your energy levels. A Lack of sleep has a similar effect on the body as stress. Adults should aim for eight hours of sleep a night.

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DRINK ENOUGH WATER

For a healthy adult that is between 2-3liters of water a day. By being well hydrated all the cells of your body can function at its optimal. Water also helps to flush out toxins. To make it easier in wintertime, drink hot water infused with lemon slices, orange slices, ginger, mint or find other creative recipes. Drinking enough water can also be helped by drinking Green tea. Green tea is packed with flavonoids, a type of anti-oxidant, but also contains the very potent antioxidant epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). EGCG is known to enhance immune function.

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EXERCISE REGULARLY

There are so many different biological pathways in which physical activity helps to boost your immune system – some of which are still being studied. Here are two proven facts about exercise: Individuals who exercise for 30-60 minutes on most days of the week have a 40% reduction in sick days during the cold season. Regular exercise helps the disease-fighting white blood cells in the body move from the organs into the bloodstream where they are able to combat and rid the invading pathogens.