The unofficial start to fall is upon us. Labor Day is over and we are back to the hectic schedules that September brings. For some of us, getting back to a routine can be comforting. For others, juggling all that comes with September can be overwhelming. Especially if you are trying to get healthy habits back on track after summer vacations.
Fall also brings its own challenges to staying healthy. Wild weather swings, school activities involving a lot of exposure to germs and certain viruses simply thrive in colder weather, such as the common cold. Also, seasonal allergies can turn into an infection when the nasal passages get infected.
One way to stay healthy this fall is to keep your nose healthy. Our nose is the first line of defense when it comes to stopping infections. The nose filters pollutants from the air as it passes through the nasal passages and warms the air before it goes to the lungs. Nasal congestion occurs when inflammation happens due to a cold, allergy, flu or environmental factors. (Source: Healthline) To help the nose do its job, using a Neti Pot to help flush it out is a great option.
When using a Neti Pot, make sure to use clean filtered water, not the type that comes out of the faucet. Even if you are using a filter that screws onto the faucet, the water won't be as clean as water that is filtered with a stronger carbon filter. A lot of the filters for the faucet are only filtering for taste. A Neti Pot does not have to be expensive. On amazon, you can find great deals. Use the Neti Pot once a week unless you feel sinus pressure and are blowing your nose, a lot.
A second way to stay healthy is to exercise. Exercise heats up the body, helping to fight off pathogens. This doesn't have to be hard-core exercise where you are sweating profusely. Walking for just 30 minutes a day provides health benefits. Exercising regularly helps your body circulate immune cells more quickly so bacteria and viruses are killed faster. (Source: OMICS) There are plenty of free exercise routines on YouTube that you can check out to find something you like. Yoga, Tai Chi and more intense routines are available to try. Once you find something you like, it becomes easier to exercise regularly.
What we eat also helps boost our immunity. As we transition from summer to fall, eating foods that are in season helps support a healthy immune system. Most of us think we have to eat citrus fruits regularly to support immune health. But there is are so many more nutrients that our immune system wants beyond just citrus.
Below is a list of some of the healthiest foods to eat to stay healthy this fall.
GARLIC, LEEKS AND ONIONS
Not only are Garlic and Onions good sources of Vitamin C, they contain Allicin which is a sulfur-containing compound that is antibacterial and antiviral. Onions should be used in almost every dish you cook this fall because they contain Quercetin. Quercetin is a powerful flavonoid that helps kill bacteria.