Earlier this Fall, I was wiped out for a week and not feeling my best.It reminded me how health is wealth and that truly everything is so much more difficult or nearly impossible when you’re under the weather – work, mom-life, house to-do’s, a social life… A week doesn’t seem very long in the big picture, but an entire week “off” or taking it slow from your normal routine can be really stressful and hard to catch up. So my advice – make your health a priority! Especially as we head into a busy Holiday season. It can be easy to burn out with parties, shopping, sugary processed treats and staying up late watching festive movies. You know your body best and how much is too much, which may result in feeling run down and can compromise your immune system. It’s okay to say no, do less, simplify, stay home… get rest and eat all the nourishing foods!
To help you have the healthiest Fall and Winter season yet, I’m sharing 10 Ways To Support Immune Health!
As an ambassador for MegaFood®, who is sponsoring this post, I will also be sharing about their proactive immune support supplements that are a great addition to your daily routine.* I am so grateful that MegaFood has so many amazing products for immune health!
Vitamin D3 is critical for the body and can be difficult to receive adequate amounts in the winter months since our main source is sunlight. It promotes a healthy and functional immune system*. This is the Vitamin D3 2000 IU supplement from MegaFood I take year round, and it is especially important in the grey, dark winter months to ensure your body is getting the adequate amount it needs to thrive!*
Vitamin D activates key immune system peptides. Here is a study that showcases the important role Vitamin D plays in supporting immune health.*
Gut health is so important for a variety of functions. One of those functions is supporting a healthy immune system! Did you know that 70% of your immune system resides in our gut? Probiotics are a great way to replenish your gut with healthy bacteria! MegaFood has an Immune Defense* Self-Stable Probiotic that helps your immune and digestive system by providing it with 15 probiotic strains and 20 Billion CFU of live bacteria! MegaFood also makes a MegaFlora® for Baby & Me Probiotic that is perfect for supporting the immune system of pregnant mom and developing baby!*
The Immune Defense Trio
Vitamin C, Zinc and Elderberry are what I like to call the “Immune Defense Trio” and here’s why!
Vitamin C: Vitamin C is essential for immune and cellular health.* As an antioxidant, it protects cells from damage by free radicals.
Zinc: This important mineral supports immune health, healthy tissue development, and wound recovery.*
Elderberry: Elderberry provides plant-powered immune support.* These berries can be bought and cooked into jams or pies, but can also be bought in supplement form, such as pills, syrups or cough drops.
I LOVE that the MegaFood Immune Defense* already provides all 3 of these ingredients in one supplement, which makes it really convenient to support your immune health. This supplement also contains bitter and phytonutrient-rich herbs, echinacea and andrographis, known for powering the immune system. This supplement is the perfect way to consume a variety of vitamins, minerals and herbs that work together to help keep you healthy!*
Garlic can boost your immune health because it contains the health supportive compound known as allicin.* Some of these properties may be killed off by heat and cooking so make sure to incorporate raw garlic into your diet for some serious protection… garlic juice shots anyone?! You can also enjoy garlic in soups, stir fries, sauces and add into homemade salad dressings.
Ginger has strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that may boost immune health.* Adding ginger into your diet can be a great way to support your body. Ginger is amazing added into curry, stir fries, sauces and sliced finely into homemade ginger tea. Add some honey and lemon into your tea for an extra dose of vitamin C!
Red Bell Peppers
Did you know that a red bell pepper actually contains more vitamin C than an orange?! Vitamin C works in the body by supporting the cellular functions within the immune system.* Snack on red bell peppers dipped in hummus, on top of tacos or in soup.
Dark Leafy Greens
Dark leafy greens are a nutrition powerhouse! Ranging from kale to spinach to swiss chard, these veggies contain high amounts of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytonutrients and fiber that all play a significant role in your immunity and digestion.* They also support a healthy liver,* which is one of your main detox organs.
Exercise has been proven to boost your immune system. Aim for 30 minutes of moderate exercise everyday, which can range from walking, running, yoga, stretching or strength training. Make sure to keep your body well hydrated before, during and after exercise to maintain strong and healthy functions.
Reduce Your Stress Level
Stress actually reduces your immune system’s ability to work at full potential by releasing the hormone cortisol. Cortisol reduces the antibodies in your gut and respiratory tract that are your first defense against seasonal challenges. Stress is a part of life, so it’s not realistic to avoid. However, we can implement stress management techniques to help bring some peace and calm into our life! Small daily healthy habits such as exercise, meditation, journaling, a bath, listening to music or your favorite podcast, talking to a friend or making your favorite cup of hot tea… whatever brings you a moment of peace and a time to unplug and recharge.
Sufficient & Restful Sleep
Lack of sleep can weaken your immune system. Aim for a solid 7-8 hours of sleep a night and try to avoid distractions. Wind down at least 30 minutes before bedtime by turning off the television and keeping your phone away from your sleep area.
Disclosure: This blog post is sponsored by MegaFood. All opinions are our own.
*This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.