The festive season brings with it plenty an opportunity to catch a cold, especially if you are spending some time in an aeroplane, bus or car. Don’t let sneezes and sniffles get you or your family down this holiday. Here are Patrick’s 7 tips for supporting your immune system and staying healthy.
- 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 watermelon, berries, carrots, beetroot, sweet potatoes, tomatoes and beansprouts. Eat what you can raw, and lightly steam the rest. Avoid frying anything as this introduces harmful free radicals that increase your toxic load.
- Have a clove or two of garlic a day – this is naturally anti-viral and anti-bacterial.
- Eat sufficient protein – aim for lean (preferably) organic meat, fish, game, quinoa and eggs.
- Herbs and spices contain immune-supporting nutrients. So, add turmeric to rice; grate ginger into stir fries or on to vegetables and add aloe vera to drinks.
- Take in enough liquid. 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.
- Sugar is not good news at the best of times, but studies show that it can actually depress immune activity. Try your best to steer clear of sugar, especially while you travel.
- There are a multitude of studies that 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 in your family starts to feel down, give them 1000g of Vitamin C each hour until they recover – that’s what Patrick does, and it works.