Summer to Autumn - How to stay Physically and Emotionally Healthy
By Sara Novakovic, Sep 22 2013 09:04PM
There’s no denying that the change of seasons is upon us now and that can often coincide with picking up infections and seeing our health go off kilter. It’s sensible then to make some gentle changes to our lifestyle to keep ourselves healthy and balanced. Here’s a few lessons learnt over the years that we have found to be effective:
• Strengthen your body’s defenses by keeping your gut healthy and your digestion working well. Try adding dark leafy greens, berries, garlic, onions, ginger, cumin, turmeric, oregano and cinnamon to your recipes when you can. Many of these foods and spices have the added benefit of boosting your immune system. Also eat foods that contain natural probiotics (like yogurt, kefir, miso soup, cultured vegetables, sauerkraut) or take a high quality supplement such as Biocare’s Acidophilus range (we keep these in our fridge).
• We gravitate toward richer foods in the winter for good reason — we need to stay warm, lubricated and healthy. Allow yourself to indulge in nuts and seeds, dried fruits, organic meats, high quality dairy and healthy fats — this will help you feel satisfied instead of resorting to chocolate and fried foods.
• Pau d'Arco Tea. As used by tribes for centuries, one of Pau d’Arco’s best known benefits is its ability to strengthen the immune system. Drinking it can help lessen the chance of illness, reduce the severity of the problem and speed up recovery times when you become sick. It can also help the body to rid itself of harmful bacteria, viruses, and fungi. It has quite a bitter flavour (which many people love) but you can sweeten it with some ginger, lemon and honey if you prefer. Also available in a capsule.
• We also recommend the powerful synchronicity of Astragalus, Elderberry and Garlic found in Terra Nova’s complex (100 caps - £17.50). It also contains a number of other powerful immune boosting ingredients to support the above trio. We have heard great results from customers using it. Why?
Astragalus - historic use is backed up by studies suggesting it may help boost interferon and white blood cell counts.
Elderberry Fruit - one of the most popular immune enhancing herbs with antiviral properties.
Garlic - Sulphur compounds in garlic are active against a wide range of microbes.
Oregon Grape Root - wide activity against numerous pathogens.
Stabilised Rice Bran - provides several nutrients to support the immune system.
OSHA Root - has been used historically to maintain the health of the respiratory tract.
Maitake Mushroom - contains beta glucans which has remarkable immune supportive properties.
• Burn essential oils to increase the negative ion count in your air and so help mitigate the effects of seasonal affective disorder. Try Lemongrass or Pine.
• Keep physically active during the winter to bolster your mental health and physical immunity. If you are a walker or runner get some cold weather workout clothes so your can keep up your routine as the temperature dips. Or shift to indoor activities: yoga, stretching, dance, toning and pilates can all be done through a DVD in your living room.
• Prioritise sleep and follow the sun’s lead. As the days get shorter, shift your sleep routine towards going to bed earlier to allow your body more hours to rest and repair.
The Oliver’s team gave us some of their own favourite Autumn pick-me-ups:
Brew your favorite herbal tea - Sara loves Rosehip on its own or with a slice of honey and lemon. In the evening she adds a bag of chamomile to it. Lush! Rosehip contains loads of Vitamin C and is also great for collagen in the skin.
Simmer some orange peels and cinnamon sticks on the hob to scent the whole house.
Turn on some good music - loud!
Give yourself a foot or neck massage with a scented oil.
Take a bath in Epsom or Magnesium Salts to both detox and ease away any aches and pains. Makes skin super soft too.
Stroll through a bookstore/museum/art gallery.
Try to take a brisk walk every day even just for 10 minutes, especially when the sun is out.