Flu season is ramping up and now is the time to make sure your immune system is as strong as it can be. In order to get the flu, or any common cold, your body has to be predisposed to getting sick. This means you would have to be eating conventionally grown food laden with pesticides, not exercising and not taking dietary supplements. This would lend your body to have a weak immune system and predisposed to getting sick. Since I eat organic, exercise 5 days a week and take dietary supplements, my immune system is getting the nutrients it needs to fight any illness.
Our society is very sick and requires vaccines to try to keep it healthy. What is a vaccine? Simply put, it is a mix of weak or dead germs that are put into your body to help you avoid getting sick. (Source: Vaccines.gov) However, vaccines are not 100% effective and can cause side effects. In fact, the flu shot can cause you to have a fever, nausea and muscle aches. Sounds very much like the flu, doesn't it?
Why is our society so sick? We have prioritized foods that come in a box and are really cheap instead of eating real food that has been grown without pesticides. We have prioritized binge watching TV instead of going outside for a walk. We have prioritized eating really large meals, much to large for us to burn off the calories we consumed, at least 3 times a day.
By doing all of this, we make our bodies sick. Our bodies are pretty amazing. They want to be healthy no matter what we do to them. They fight for us to be healthy. But if we don't take care of them in return, they eventually are unable to fight for us. That is exactly how we become predisposed to getting sick.
So how can you strengthen your body to fight illness?
#1 EAT ORGANIC. Organic products are becoming easier and easier to find in our local supermarkets. Organic food is higher in nutrient content because it has not been treated with chemicals and pesticides. Chemicals and pesticides kill bugs that may cause harm to a crop. But those chemicals and pesticides leave residue on our foods. Residue that cannot be washed off because the plant has absorbed them into its biological system.
Once the plant has absorbed the chemicals, the structure of the plant has changed. Our body does not know how to deal with this change so it fights the food we feed it. This means our body is spending a lot of time fighting the food versus saving it's strength to fight the real predator - illness. There is a misconception that organic food costs more. It doesn't. Since it is higher in nutrients, you will start to eat less of it. Which means your grocery shopping will last a lot longer. Also, think about buying organic as an investment in your health. If you don't pay for organic food now, you will be paying medical bills later.
#2 GET MOVING. Physical activity is what your body craves. It wasn't meant to be sitting at a desk, on a couch or in a car for 8 to 10 hours at a time. Walking is the most underrated form of exercise. It is easy to do and you can do it anywhere! If the weather is bad, go find an enclosed shopping mall to walk in. If the weather is good, go outside. Even if it is cold. A few layers can keep you warm. Join a gym. There are so many that are available for just $10 a month. That is a very small investment to help your body maintain its health.
#3 TAKE SUPPLEMENTS. While eating organic food is one of the best things you can do to nourish your body, we can't get enough nutrients from eating organic food. Supplements are necessary. Vitamin C is one of the most amazing supplements you can take. Almost all systems in our body need Vitamin C to stay healthy. The great thing about Vitamin C is that it is water soluble. Your body will absorb what it needs and then release what it doesn't. One side effect of taking Vitamin C can be gastric distress. So start slowly. If 500 mg each day works for you, take it. Some of us can tolerate 1,000 mg without any issue.
Other supplements I highly recommend are Quercetin and Omega-3. Quercetin is found in foods like apples and blueberries but not at the levels we need to keep our body healthy at a cellular level. Quercetin helps to reduce histamine responses in our body (the thing that makes you stuffy and blow your nose) and boosts the immune system. Omega-3 is also needed by our cells. The foods we eat are heavy in Omega-6 so most of us are Omega-3 deficient. You don't have to take fish oil to get Omega-3. There are plenty of plant based options to buy.
Probiotics are also a great supplement to take on a daily basis. They not only help with digestive health but keep the immune system healthy. Look for a probiotic that contains the two major species that naturally exist in our bodies, Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. If you need help finding the right supplements, a holistic nutritionist can help you customize the supplements right for you. Look for the board certification of National Association of Nutritional Professionals.
If you follow the above, you can avoid being predisposed to getting the flu and other illnesses. It takes time to get your body healthy. After all, you've been living your life in a certain way for many years. Making changes will help you to overcome all the damage that has been done. Remember your body wants to be healthy, it just needs your support to do so.
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