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Boost Your Immune System this Winter!

We all know how important it is to have a robust immune system, right? Especially at the time of year between seasons, when the weather is changing, or during times of stress. As a nutritionist, I am always working to ensure my clients know what to do to support their immune system.


When it comes to people that struggle with digestive/gut health conditions it's even more important to support the immune system. High inflammation, damage to the gut lining and lack of healthy gut bacteria will affect the absorption of important nutrients required by the immune system which in turn affects the response to an infection or injury.


That's why in this article, I am super excited to dive into this topic with you today. We're going to explore some ways you can naturally boost immunity, from simple lifestyle changes to powerful herbal and nutritional supplements. So, get ready to arm your immune system and equip yourself with some valuable knowledge!


Understanding your Immune System:

Before we jump into the strategies for boosting immunity, let's quickly understand how the immune system works its magic.

Think of your immune system as your body's defence system, working tirelessly to keep you healthy and protected. It consists of a complex network of cells, tissues and organs that work together to identify and eliminate harmful substances, such as bacteria, viruses and toxins.


When your immune system is strong and in balance, it's better equipped to fend off invaders and keep you well. But when it's weak, it's like the world's worst security guard, letting anyone in and causing all kinds of trouble.


Lifestyle Changes for Immune System Support:


First up, a balanced diet is the key. Your immune system thrives on nourishment, so make sure to load up on a variety of fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats like coconut oil, ghee, extra virgin olive oil, flax/linseed oil, avocado's and proteins such such lamb, chicken, beef, pulses, fish and seafood.


These foods provide essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that help strengthen your immune response. For example, berries, red bell peppers, kiwifruit, and citrus fruits like oranges and lemons, are packed with vitamin C, which is known to bolster the immune function.


Green leafy vegetables, pumpkin, carrots, kumara, nuts and seeds, and almond milk are rich in antioxidants and vitamins such as vitamin A and vitamin E, which are important for maintaining a healthy immune system. Fatty fish like wild caught salmon and sardines area great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which are known to reduce inflammation and strengthen the immune system.


Mushrooms, oysters, eggs, fish, legumes, and Brazil nuts are packed with essential minerals such as zinc and selenium, which are also important for a healthy immune system.



Don't forget about immune boosting powerhouses like garlic, ginger and turmeric which have been used for centuries to enhance immunity.




Regular exercise is another game changer for your immune system. Not only does it help maintain a healthy weight and improve cardiovascular health, but it also enhances immune function. Try a daily walk in the fresh air, yoga, Pilates, lifting weights or dancing to your favorite tunes around the lounge.


Ah, sleep - the unsung hero of immune support. Getting quality sleep is vital for maintaining a robust immune system. During sleep, your body repairs and regenerates, and your immune system goes into overdrive, fighting off infections and fortifying your defences. Set yourself up with a good night routine so that the body readies itself for sleep. Try for at least 7-9 hours of sleep a night.

Check out the blog, 5 benefits of sleep for optimal gut function for more ideas. https://www.paulagrubbnutrition.com/post/are-you-getting-a-good-nights-sleep


Stress, oh stress - It can wreak havoc on your immune system. Chronic stress weakens immune function, making you more susceptible to illness. That's why it's essential to manage stress effectively. Explore stress-reducing techniques that resonate with you, such as breathing exercises, mediation, reading a good book, writing in a diary, or taking up a hobby.


Natural remedies for immune support:



In addition to lifestyle changes, certain natural remedies can give your immune system an extra boost. Let's delve into some of these fantastic options:


Herbal supplements have long been used to support immune health.


A Homeobotancial remedy that includes immune powerhouses such as echinacea, renowned for its immune boosting properties as it stimulates the production of white blood cells, which are essential for fighting off infections, Astragalus which is widely used in traditional Chinese medicine for it's immune modulating effects and antioxidants and Olive leaf, a powerful antiviral, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory as well as being a powerful immune booster.

Look into a quick assist consult at https://www.paulagrubbnutrition.com/consultations for your personalized practitioner prescribed remedy.


The mighty Reishi mushroom, revered for their ability to enhance immune response and overall vitality.



Herbal teas such as ginger, echinacea, chamomile and elderberry can provide a comforting and immune supportive drink. Ginger shots, made with fresh ginger root, lemon juice and a touch of honey are a powerful way to kick start your immune system.



Including garlic and onion in your cooking also supports the immune system to fight pathogens (and it tastes delicious!) And when you're feeling under the weather, whip up a healthy immune-supportive chicken soup, packed with nutrient-rich vegetables, herbs and spices is proven to be a great immune-supporting meal.



Other immune boosting supplements are vitamin C, vitamin D and zinc, as they support the whole body and the gut barrier. Zinc also plays a major role in the gut lining and health, which is where 70% of your immune system is housed.



So there you have it - a comprehensive guide to naturally boosting your immunity. By making simple lifestyle changes, incorporating immune-boosting foods, embracing stress management techniques, and exploring natural remedies, you can strengthen your immune system and enhance your overall well-being.


Remember, these strategies work best when practiced consistently and in conjunction with other healthy habits. Before making any significant changes, it's always a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional, especially if you have any underlying health conditions or are taking medications.




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Look into a quick assist consult at https://www.paulagrubbnutrition.com/consultations for your personalized practitioner prescribed homeobotanical remedy.


* If you need any help with strengthening your immune system, either for winter colds and flu's for you or any member of your family or have an auto-immune condition where you need further immune health strategies so you can feel like you again and in control of your own health, feel free to book a discovery call to learn more about how my services can help you! https://www.paulagrubbnutrition.com/contact


** If you found this helpful? You might like to grab the Winter Wellness, guide to the Cold and Flu season from my store, where you will find out more about the immune system, further herbs and supplements that may assist you and recipes for a great chicken soup and home made cold remedy. https://www.paulagrubbnutrition.com/shop


For more tips on IBS, reflux or your autoimmune condition, or just want to feel like you again and in control of your own health, come follow me on instagram at #paulagrubbnutrition


Natural Cough Syrup recipe

Coughs, colds, sore throats, chest infections


2 jars – roughly the same size.

1 large onion white

2 cloves of garlic

Liquid honey to cover

½ tsp cayenne – optional

Ginger – optional


Roughly cut onion and garlic into small pieces. Place in a jar.

Add cayenne pepper and chopped ginger.

Pour over liquid honey until chopped mixture is covered. Sit and allow the honey to seep through the mix and separate.

The honey will then be on the bottom and onion mix will be on top. This will not take long, but the mix can be left longer to gain medicinal value.

When all the honey has seeped through, strain mix through a cheese cloth or new dish cloth, into a jar that’s lid can be tightly closed.

Squeeze cloth to extract as much liquid as possible. Throw out onion mix.

This is now ready to be used when necessary.

A red onion can be used for a milder flavour.


Paula







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