It seems to me that every year more people catch the winter bugs AND these bugs seem to hit us harder. But why? Are we too busy? Not enough exercise? Not enough sleep? Not enough vitamins? Not enough flu shots? Worse viruses? Yes, all these are true, but there is more to the picture.
The reality is, as a whole, we have weaker immune systems than previous generations. It is a number of factors that have lead to this. The good news is that we have the ability to change this. We have the knowledge to build strong and healthy bodies that can withstand the onslaught of bugs each winter.
This may be a generalization, but the majority of us are "nutritionally malnourished". We consume enough calories, maybe even too many, but we do not consume the correct foods to provide our body with materials it needs to be strong and healthy.
We have lost the art of good home cooking, eating foods that "stick to your bones", and herbal remedies to sustain us through the winter. The quality of our food system has declined so much that there is now a need for supplementation (and not just as a multi billion pharmaceutical industry). Our lives are too busy to care about what we put into our bodies and the demands of this century leave us sleeping less hours as more demands are put upon us.
So what do we do? It starts with building a solid foundation with a nutrient dense diet. Cut out sugar, refined wheat products, and processed foods. Control your caffeine and alcohol intake. We must nourish our bodies. It's not just fruit and vegetables I'm talking about either. Some of the most healthy populations in the world ate very little, if at all, fruit and veggies. Inuit tribes in northern Canada and Alaska feasted on fermented fish and blubber and were free of disease. Yes it is important to eat fruits and vegetables for their array of vitamins,minerals and antioxidants. But even more important is to consume fruits and vegetables with generous amounts of fat so that your body is able to absorb and utilize the nutrients. So eat your berries with cream and smother your vegetables with butter (and unrefined sea salt).
Nourish yourselves with fat soluble vitamins A,D and K, essential minerals and naturally occurring probiotics while boosting your immune system with simple herbs. It does not take expensive super foods and gallons of green juices to keep you from catching that cold. All you need is pure and simple nourishment from good food and natural remedies. The best super foods you can consume through the winter months (and please, all year round) are:
-Nourishing fats (butter, ghee, coconut oil, lard, tallow, cream, egg yolks)
-Coconut products (oil, milk, manna) : antiviral and antibacterial properties
-Probiotic foods: sauerkraut, fermented vegetables, kombucha, kvass, yogurt, kefir
Herbal and natural remedies to boost our immune systems:
-Elderberries, high in vitamin c and antioxidants
-Rose hips, very high in vitamin c and antioxidants
-Garlic- stimulating, warning, antiviral and antibacterial
-Raw honey, antiviral and antibacterial
-Ginger, warming, stimulating to the immune system, calms upset stomachs
-Apple cider vinegar, helps balance pH in our bodies (viruses can only survive in an acidic environment
-Double dose of cod liver oil, rich source of fat soluble vitamins A, D, and K
Even if you have already caught the winter bug, these natural remedies and nourishing foods will be of great benefit and will shorten the duration of your illness.