As the seasons transition from Autumn to Winter, many people are experiencing changes in their bodies as they adjust to the weather shift. From dry skin and hair, to colds, stomach bugs and flu. Unfortunately, this is all too common and as soon as one person gets sick, then it seems to be a domino effect across the office, affecting not only our health but the companies production for the best part of a month.
Prevention is better than a cure so how do we prevent ourselves from getting sick in the first place and strengthening our immune system to prevent the cold and flu roller-coaster?
Eating wholefoods is essential, with a particular emphasis on ensuring you are getting enough Vitamin C and an assortment of B Vitamins. Vitamin C helps to reduce inflammation and is integral in stimulating the immune system; while B vitamins regulate the immune response and the amount of antibodies produced to fight the infection. You can find Vitamin C in foods such as lemons, oranges, broccoli, kiwi fruit, capsicum, kale and asparagus. B vitamins are found in brown rice, quinoa and dark green leafy vegetables.
As the weather gets cooler, consuming warming foods is not only satisfying but very nourishing. Bone Broths are incredibly nourishing as the broth, which is rich in minerals, support the immune system by supporting gut health. Healing compounds like glutamine and collagen, which contains glycine and proline aid in restoring the integrity and health of the gut lining and reducing inflammation. A healthy gut increases your ability to absorb the vitamins you are consuming through your food like vitamin C and B Vitamins which in turn support immunity and stave off cold and flu.
Another factor to consider in your quest to refrain from having days off work sick is to reduce stress. By reducing stress and being mindful in your day to day tasks at work and at home, plays a big part in keeping you healthy. If you do feel yourself getting stressed, then the fastest way to re-centre and allow your body to know it is safe is through diaphragmatic breathing – a long deep belly raising inhale and an equally deep exhale a few times throughout the day will do the trick and slow the production of stress hormones.
So to avoid any unnecessary sick days spent ill under the doona, eat your veggies and breathe deeply to assist you in keeping healthy and staying stress free.
Written by Kelly Stubbs.