The Easter break is just around the corner, and for many of you – the last opportunity to hit the beach before the cold winter months. Just because it’s still warm out, doesn’t mean you are any less likely to catch a cold. In fact, if you are travelling this Easter – all the more reason to give your immune system a boost.
7 easy ways to support your immune system
1. Load up on fruit and veg – aim for at least five portions a day and pick a rainbow selection of colours to get a good range of nutrients. Good sources of immune boosting nutrients include carrots, beetroot, sweet potatoes, tomatoes and beansprouts. Watermelon and berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries etc. – are great and you can buy these frozen when they are not in season). Eat what you can raw, and lightly steam the rest. Avoid frying anything as this introduces harmful free radicals that increase your toxic load.
2. Have a clove or two of garlic a day – this is naturally anti-viral and anti-bacterial.
3. Eat sufficient protein – aim for lean (preferably) organic meat, fish, game, quinoa, eggs, pulses combined with grains, dairy foods or tofu.
4. Herbs and spices contain immune-supporting nutrients – for example, add turmeric to rice; grate ginger into stir fries or on to vegetables; add aloe vera to drinks.
5. Take in enough fluid – when you consider the fact that 60-70% of your body is water, then it should be number one on your health priority list. Yet many of us don’t drink enough in a normal day, never mind during the holiday period when our routine is unbalanced. Water regulates body temperature, delivers oxygen, lubricates joints, forms saliva, helps cell growth, keeps you regular and what’s more, hydrated bodies are less prone to catching bugs. Water also flushes toxins out of your system and is particularly good for preventing urine infections and kidney stones. Aim for 8 glasses of water a day.
6. Sugar is not good news at the best of times, but studies show that it can actually depress immune activity, so try your best to steer your children away from too much sugar while you travel.
7. There are a multitude of studies which demonstrate the immune-supporting effects of taking supplements. To keep your family’s immune systems fighting fit, Patrick recommends that you take a high strength multi vitamin and mineral complex as well as an antioxidant formula that contains vitamin C, Zinc and immune boosting nutrients like elderberry and ginger. If anyone does start to feel down, give them 1000g of vitamin C each hour until they recover – that’s what Patrick does, and it works.