by Ashley Koff, RD
When it comes to this time of year, there are just as many people asking me how they can stay (or get) healthy – as in immune health – versus lose holiday or 2014 extra lbs. It’s a valid concern as the holidays may seem to thicken the waistline (or create concern that they could) but fatigue, sugar, alcohol, more food, later nights and less quality sleep, and more contact with others also threatens even the most robust of immune systems. Thankfully there are 3 easy steps.
Intake: OK, you may want to enjoy the “fun” stuff but now is the time to double down on Mother Nature’s immune kit – all the colors of the rainbow in fruits and veggies, as well as herbs and spices will help support a healthy immune system. Worried there won’t be veggies at your party? Purée them up in my Winter Wellness smoothie which also includes Mama natures’s extra immune helper – colostrum – which helps support healthy digestion and immune activity in the digestive tract lining.
Read More: AKA Kitchen Recipes
Eliminate: Yes, this refers to healthy bowels so make sure of your intake of water, fiber, and possibly add supplemental magnesium to maintain regular elimination. Sweating is also a key form of eliminating toxins – I’m a huge fan of infrared saunas as well as sweat inducing dance parties and other physical activities. And finally, eliminate all chemistry lab projects – the fake stuff – to quote my gal pal “Does this Equal grow on the Equal tree?” if it’s not directly from nature don’t direct it into or on you. Keep it simple for your system to do the most effective job at keeping you healthy.
Recovery: So many parties, so many errands, so many end if the year projects all translate to so little rest and recovery for the body and that spells trouble for immune health. Find time for the naps (especially if sleep was sub-optimal the night before), try to keep a set bedtime, and also aim to identify the things you can skip – happily say “that’s just not happening in 2014” and cross it off that list (as well as think real hard about what makes it onto 2015’s list).