How to Winterize Your Body
As the cold weather approaches we all have our routines to winterize certain aspects of our lives; our pools, our cars, our houses, but many of us neglect to winterize the most important thing: Ourselves.
As the weather changes so do our nutritional requirements. The air becomes drier, we spend more times indoors, we get less sunlight on our skin, and typically our activity level goes down. All of this can have an adverse affect on our health. I have compiled a list of tips to help you overcome the cold and flu season.
Eat For Health
This statement may seem obvious, but it’s extremely important to remember this during the cold winter months. 70% of our immune system is in our gut. Meaning that the majority of our immune defense relies on what we eat. The healthy bacteria in our guts helps fend off those nasty cold viruses.
Don’t Forget to Move
As the weather gets colder, the days get shorter, and we spend more time in the dark cozy indoors; most of us neglect to get the proper amount of exercise. It’s easy for us to get home from work and plop down on the couch for the night.
Supplements Are Your Friend
Vitamin D is one of the essential vitamins for a healthy immune system. During the summer we get plenty of vitamin D because we spend more of our time outdoors; however, during winter we spend more time indoors and the days are shorter meaning we don’t get sufficient amounts of Vitamin D and our immune system is severely affected.
If you start feeling symptoms it’s too late for Vitamin C supplements. The key is to start early. The amount of Vitamin C you need each day depends on your age. For the average adult 18-55 try to strive for 75-90mg a day. If you overdo it, don’t fret since Vitamin C a water soluble vitamin and the body will dispose of any unneeded vitamin.
Side note: If you smoke; #1 Stop, #2 add an addition 35mg to the above recommendation.
Most Importantly: Zinc
Zinc is a trace element that is necessary for a healthy immune system. A lack of zinc can make you more susceptible to disease and illness. Zinc helps stimulate the activity of at least a00 different enzymes and is found is many different foods. One of the main functions of Zinc is to help activate T-lymphocytes (T-Cells). T-Cells help the body in two ways. 1) Control and regulate the immune response, 2) attacking infected or cancerous cells. Adding 8-11mg a day can help thwart off those nasty colds and flu viruses. A simple way to incorporate Zinc into your diet is through zinc lozenges.
Key take aways from this article: Eat well, move often, and take nutritional supplements during these cold months. Your body will thank you.