7 Ways to Make Your Immune System Work More
By Heather Dominick
Did you know that most winter flues start a MONTH before you feel them - if not
more? Yes, that's right. Even if you are feeling healthy, you have a good chance of
getting sick if you aren't paying close attention.
I admit I've done it myself. Sometimes I get all pumped up with the holidays in
December, stay up late wrapping presents, meet people for one to0 many festive
dinners out and come January I've lost my zest. Or sometimes even February. For
some reason we think that we can add in a ton of activities, food we don't usually
eat and family gatherings all in 3 short weeks and then proceed as normal. That
approach just lost you your energy.
Ever go on vacation and find yourself . sick. Guess whose body just got a chance to
The first time I ever really experienced this phenomena was in high school - it was
my senior year and I was working really hard as cheerleader captain (Hey, this is a
serious story!) for an upcoming competition. We placed third, but I missed the last
big basketball game of my senior year 1 week later because all my exhaustion had
caught up with me and I was home with the flue. It was very sad. (I'm over it now.)
The good news is there are a few simple things you can do to prevent "Winter Flues"
from happening so much or even at all. Here's a simple checklist of what you can do
to increase your immunity right now:
1. Stay active.
This time of year any good party, vacation or company can pull you away from your
regular movement routine. Don't let the entire month of December take you away.
You can stay active even in the middle of celebrating. You just need to adjust.
Instead of saying, "Oh, I can't go to my dance class because I have such and such.
Oh, well." Say, " Where can I find 15-30 minutes to be active today since I'll be
missing my dance class?" This lets you continue self-care even as the party glasses
are clinking and gifts are being opened.
2. Spice it up.
When it comes to flu prevention take ACTION by using spices to your advantage:
Add to your cooking: . lots of fresh ginger
. fresh garlic
. hot peppers
. ginsing paste
Make a tea: . ginsing paste, honey and hot water
Chinese Herb: . Andrographis paniculata - a potent cold-fighting herb recommended by the World
3. Breathe and relax.
Stress is one of the main causes of winter illness. To keep this in check take breath
breaks throughout the day - especially during these holiday times. Simply close your
eyes: take a few conscious deep breathes: inhale in, exhale out. If you are in a place
where you can place your hands on your abdomen or on your heart this will help
calm you as well.
4. Antioxidant yourself.
I highly recommend including fruits and vegetables high in antioxidants for this
time of year. Don't just go with what you usually eat instead choose with a boost in
Fruits: . clementines
Vegetables: . peppers
Remember you have a lot of valuable "options" even at this time of year and
anything extra you can do to give your system a push in the right direction.
Try calling it a night sooner than later at this darker time of the year. If your nights
are really packed with activity or your mind is just "awake" with anticipation then
take a hot-water bottle to bed. I know this may sound silly or like old-fashioned
advice, but your body will be soothed by connecting to the warm water in the bottle
6. Fresh herbs.
Growing your own herbs in an indoor window box is a great way to keep yourself
"fresh" during the cold months. Fresh thyme, parsley and rosemary help with
circulation and digestion. The benefits from fresh COMPLETELY outweigh the use of
Murphy's Law says no matter what, something occasionally will go wrong. Whether
it's your back, shoulder or just body tension for those of us living in colder
temperatures. Don't try to go it a lone. Find a practitioner that offesr what you enjoy
and that you click with. Don't be afraid to keep searching for the right match. There
are some wonderful alternative forms of bodywork available. Think about working
with someone who offers:
. Thai Yoga Massage
Heather Dominick, "The Energy Expert" is a nutrition and energy specialist, and
coach with over 10 years of teaching and coaching experience. Heather's primary
focus is in helping women identify nutritional sources for increasing physical energy
and making permanent lifestyle changes. To sign up to receive your own 20 minute
Energy Make-over, for her freebie how-to articles and no-charge teleclasses on
creating your most energized life, visit http://www.individual-health.net.
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