My Top Tips to boost your immunity this winter

May 24, 2017

 

Did you know over 70% of your immune system is in your gut?

 

Looking after our gut health is so vitally important - so many diseases and illnesses come from the "good guys" in our gut being taken over by the "bad guys" - pathogens, viruses, parasites, etc. We are actually more bacteria than human - scientists estimate we have about 39 trillion bacteria cells in our system! So having a strong and balanced immune system is imperative for you and your little ones to stay well this winter.

If you want to get your gut flora happy and boost your immune system, here's some tips:

1. Avoid overuse of antibiotics - these mess with our gut bacteria like crazy, killing off a lot of the "good guys" in our gut - if you or your family do need to take them, make sure you take pro-biotics as well to boost those "good guys" in your system
2. Incorporate fermented foods into your daily diet (sauerkraut, kombucha, kefir, miso, coconut yoghurt etc)
3. Reduce refined sugar and carbs and processed foods - the "bad guys" LOVE to feed on sugar, and also carbohydrates like white rice, biscuits, white flour products (baking, crackers etc), cereals, chips etc.  Plus the additives, colourings, preservatives etc in processed food's can be extremely disruptive to our gut flora
4. Lower your stress levels - constant stress activates our Sympathetic Nervous System, keeping us in "fight or flight" mode and can cause a huge amount of inflammation in our body
5. Up your vegies, especially your greens - eat foods from nature as much as poss (see below for Top 5 foods to supercharge your immune system)
6. Drink bone broth, apple cider vinegar in water and/or lemon in warm water daily to boost the good bacteria in your gut.  You can watch my video on how to make bone broth here
 and download the recipe here.

7. Take pro-biotics during and leading up to the winter, especially in times of stress or illness which helps boost your immunity (I actually give my kids pro-biotics every day in the winter)
8. Limit alcohol and caffeine (sorry about that one).  These can affect the lining of your stomach and intestines, and caffeine also keeps our system in "fight or flight" mode, which we want to avoid

9. Don't be a clean freak - over use of anti bacterial products actually reduces our good bacteria
10. Hang out with your four legged friends - studies show that children brought up on farms and/or around animals have a higher amount of beneficial bacteria than those who don't
11. Watch your toxic load - how many chemicals do you come in contact with on a daily basis?  Toxic overload can cause a huge amount of stress on our immune system and gut bacteria.  Think about how many toxins are in products you use like facial cleansers, moisturiser, hair products, make-up, cleaning products etc
12. For immunity - take a good multivitamin plus vitamin c, echinacea, collodial silver etc

13. Get outside for at least 30 mins of direct sunlight (when you can) - Vitamin D is essential to boosting our immune system

14. Stay hydrated with water

The Top 5 Foods to supercharge your immune system:

 

1. Bananas

2. Broccoli and other cruciferous vegies like kale, cabbage and cauliflower

3. Blueberries

4. Beans

5. Fermented foods (as mentioned above)

If you do think you have a gut issue (the symptoms of which are many, varied and wide) feel free to email me for a chat - melissa@thethriveguide.co.nz

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