My 7 tips on how to stay healthy this winter

1.Food

You probably won’t want a salad so eat warm food.  Not only will it be easier to digest but it’ll warm your body down to your toes!  If you haven’t got a slow cooker, invest in one.  I always recommend one for busy, working mums.  So easy – throw in your meat, stock and some veggies in the morning and you’ll come home to a gorgeous smell and no cooking to do.   If you don’t eat meat, a nice veggie curry will do nicely.  Warm bone broth will do wonders for your gut health and it contains gelatin, collagen, glutamine and minerals, all gut healing wonders.  Chicken soup also works wonders when fighting a cold.

Foods such as garlic, ginger, chilli and lemon are excellent to help fight the cold.  Shiitake mushrooms contain lentinan, an active compound that can boost your immune system, making it stronger and more capable of fighting various infections and diseases.

2.Drink

Really important to hydrate with water.  That could be a tea or soup or just a plain glass of water.  A nice warm tea with ginger, cloves, garlic, lemon juice and raw/manuka honey will do the trick.  If you don’t fancy garlic in your tea, add it to cooking.

3.Vitamin C

Most of you probably know that this is the main immune boosting vitamin.  Foods that contain Vitamin C are citrus fruits, capsicum, kiwifruit and dark green leafy veggies.  Vitamin C is also great to have with iron rich foods to help with absorption.  So remember to have these foods with your meals.

Vitamin C is one of the vitamins that becomes depleted over time if you suffer from stress.

4.Zinc

Zinc will boost your immune system.  Many people are deficient in zinc.  Foods high in zinc include red meat, nuts and seeds.  Oysters contain the highest amount of zinc if you can stomach them.

5.Stress

Stress is a known immune suppressant and makes you more vulnerable to all those germs floating around at work, on the train or at the play centre with the kids.  Evaluate your stress – are you saying yes to everything, are you running around like a headless chicken?  You need to make time for yourself, take deep breaths when you’re feeling anxious, overwhelmed or irritated.  Try yoga, meditation or just stretch at home.

In my new e-book, ‘Brand New You’, I talk about what drives stress, how it impacts us and a few stress buster tips.  Have a look at https://www.wholefoodnutrition.com.au/e-book/ if you would like to find out more.

6.Exercise

Just because it’s winter, it doesn’t mean you can slack off.  Central heating beckons but you still need to move outside occasionally to get those endorphins going and did you know that shivering helps you burn extra fat?

7.Stay Warm

I know I’m stating the obvious but sometimes, we forget to wear enough clothes as we may be still thinking of those lovely summer days.  Keep warm and wear a scarf against the cold winds, especially if you’re hanging around and not exercising.

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