Our immune systems get a real workout at this time of year with cold, flu’, and tummy bug germs thriving in warm, dry, centrally heated homes and offices. It’s a good idea to top up on immune-supporting nutrients to give your system the best chance of fending off these invaders as much as possible.
Here are 4 simple ways to nourish your immune system this winter…
Need more? Try these too:
– Vitamin C has powerful anti-viral action, particularly against the flu’ viruses. Food sources include watercress, peppers, kiwi, berries, peas, parsley, broccoli, and lemons. If you’re at high risk of infection consider using at least 1000mg per day of ascorbic acid or Ester-C.
– Zinc may help to reduce the severity and shorten the duration of colds. Food sources include poultry (chicken soup really can work wonders), pumpkin seeds, red meat, and cashew nuts. Zinc citrate lozenges are a quick way to boost levels and helpful at the first tingles of a cold.
– Echinacea has a long history of traditional use for respiratory infections like colds and flu’. Go for an organic whole herb extract that contains the natural balance of active compounds; A.Vogel do tinctures, tablets and a throat spray in their excellent ‘Echinaforce‘ range. It’s a winter staple in my remedy cupboard!
Do you have a favourite cold and flu’ remedy? Come and tell us over in the Facebook group and find out more winter health tips and nourishing recipes!
As well as being a staple ingredient in so many curry dishes it can be added to warm milk for a ‘turmeric latte’, mixed with hot water, ginger, raw honey and lemon for a soothing cold-fighting brew or simply blended in with other herbs and spices in casseroles and soups.
Shakela Shan from www.nutrishan.com is a Nutritional Therapist with a special interest in weight management. Her passion for creating new recipes really shines through and she has kindly shared this one for you!
1 cup quinoa
1.5 cup water
1/4 teaspoon of turmeric powder
Salt and black pepper to taste
Chopped fresh coriander
1. In a pan add quinoa, water, salt, turmeric and black pepper and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes with the lid on the pan. Turn the heat off and allow to stand for a further 10-15 minutes.
2. Finally add the cranberries, coriander, flaked almonds and a drizzle of olive oil. Stir in all the ingredients with a fork.
Serve with chicken / fish / lentils, and a colourful salad for a nutrient-packed meal!
Running, swimming, tennis, football….all are fun until the moment injury strikes or you overdo it with the training!
Joint-nourishing foods can easily be incorporated into meals and snacks to support and improve strength, stamina and recovery from both training and injuries.
Try these 6 tasty choices:
1. Cherries: Montmorency cherries are packed with anthocyanins, natural antioxidant compounds which have been proven to reduce inflammation and soreness, and aid muscle recovery after training. Add ‘CherryActive’ to your post workout smoothie for a muscle boost!
2. Beetroot: this vibrant root vegetable is rich in nitric oxide, a natural compound that encourages circulation, increases stamina and maintains healthy blood pressure. Many sports teams (including the 2010 England Rugby squad!) include shots of beetroot juice in their training regimes 7-14 days before an event. Of course you can use it every day if you wish! Drink raw beetroot juice for maximum benefit and try adding a little apple or carrot juice if the taste is a bit ‘earthy’ for you.
3. Oily fish: salmon, mackerel, sardines, herrings, trout and pilchards are all packed with anti-inflammatory Omega 3 oils – perfect for both mind and body. For all you athletic vegetarians and vegans, flax oil is a fantastic source of omega-3 essential fats. It musn’t be heated up but tastes great drizzled over porridge or a baked potato or blended in a smoothie.
4. Spirulina: this microscopic cyanobacteria grows on freshwater lakes all over the world. It contains 22 amino acids, vital for muscle function and repair alongside anti-inflammatory and antioxidant nutrients. Like beetroot, it has a slightly ‘earthy’ taste but blends well with apple juice, dried fruits or in a banana smoothie.
5. Turmeric: the golden spice has the pain killing and anti-inflammatory effects of over the counter NSAID’s but without the nasty side effects. Add generous amounts to homemade curries!
6. Ginger: another anti-inflammatory and warming spice, grated ginger with hot water and lemon juice is a perfect way to start the day and give your sore, dehydrated muscles a boost.
Questions? Thoughts? Want to find out if a personalised Nutrition Plan can get you running that extra mile?
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