This time of year isn’t just pumpkin spice season. It’s also cold/flu season, which is why it is important that we protect our immune system.
What too many people ignore is the fact that there are simple, daily habits we can implement that will positively impact our health.
Here, we cover 3 simple, practical steps to protecting your health and wellness this fall/winter season.
There are several reasons we should eat seasonally. Supporting local farmers, the environment, etc. The main reason is for our health.
Seasonal fruits and vegetables contain the highest concentrations of vitamins and nutrients.
When these plants are planted and grown out of their ideal season, they don’t absorb as much nutrients from the soil.
We have these immensely complex supply chains that transport produce from other areas. In these areas (like subtropical climates, for example), the produce may be in season.
However, let’s just stop and think about the way our body’s are meant to function. Have you ever thought that the foods that naturally grow in your region are made to support your body in the conditions of that region?
Have you ever thought that maybe someone who lives in a tropical climate experiences different living conditions on a daily basis with little cold weather that may result in a naturally different eating pattern?
Maybe the plants that grow only in certain months in your particular reason do so for a reason. Perhaps there is some truth behind this.
Perhaps it’s best that summer squash and melons aren’t in season during colder weather. They wouldn’t provide the vitamins and nutrients we would need for optimal wellness.
With that taken into consideration, focus on seasonal fruits and vegetables.
Related: The Most Nutrient-Dense Fall Produce
Make Gut Health Top Priority
You can’t be healthy without a healthy gut. Your gut controls and influences everything including your immune system.
Needless to say, it should be top priority.
There are many ways to boost your gut health. One of them, as mentioned above, would be to consume many nutrient-dense fruits and vegetables as their antioxidants content fights free radicals that can disrupt gut health.
Some of the best (seasonal) foods for a healthy gut are ginger, artichoke, cooked apples/pears, cranberries, sweet potatoes, kale and other leafy greens.
Another way to promote a healthy gut is to reduce stress. Stress is toxic to the body and should be minimized to the best of your ability.
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A consistent, well-balanced workout routine is essential to boost immunity.
Firstly, exercise can help prevent colds, the flu, and other illnesses by flushing bacteria out of your airways.
Secondly, exercise increases the body’s white blood cell count, which are responsible for fighting diseases
Another, less mentioned, factor is the change in body temperature during and after your workout. It is thought that the brief rise could aid the body in fighting infections and sickness (much like a fever).
And lastly, moving back to a point made above, stress. Stress is toxic to your gut health and immune system. Exercise is widely known for reducing stress in the body by releasing certain hormones.
Take full advantage of this free tool and maintain a consistent fitness routine. Motivation will come and go, but the habits you form will create your health, wellbeing, and future.
It’s important that we prep ourselves physically for the colder months. The great thing is all of these steps require simple change to your lifestyle.
There’s nothing drastic or expensive about these habits. Eating locally and seasonally is actually cheaper than doing otherwise.
You don’t need fancy supplements to maintain a healthy gut. A healthy gut must come from your diet. Supplements are just there for a boost.
Exercise? You don’t need a gym membership or trainer to get you started. Fitness one of the most underutilized tools we have for health and wellness.
In all, implementing these steps year round will help you fight disease, sickness, fatigue, and weak immunity. But they are especially vital in the fall/winter months. Prioritize them.