by Janna Champagne, BSN, RN
In the winter, boosting your health can make the difference between chronic bouts of illness and staying well. The fall and winter months can be especially hard on our health, between the weather shifts, having less sunlight exposure, and the holiday stress. The following are 5 simple tips for supporting optimal wellness:
1. Support Your Lymph System: Our lymph system is like a drain that helps to remove waste and balance the immune system. Daily care of the lymphatic system helps the body work better and keeps the immune system operating the way it should. Consider the following supports:
a. Daily Detox Tea Recipe (and it tastes amazing!): https://draxe.com/recipe/secret-detox-drink/
b. Daily Rebounding Session: https://www.wellbeingjournal.com/rebounding-good-for-the-lymph-system/
2. Limit Incoming Toxins: Our immune system functions best when we limit our exposure to environmental toxins. Toxins can contribute to inflammation and suppress our immune system, making us more vulnerable to infection and illness. Consider the following strategies to limit environmental toxin exposure:
a. Consume Primarily Organic foods
b. Use personal products that are free of parabens, sulfates, or synthetic perfumes. For healthier scented products, look for those with essential oils in the ingredients, or purchase unscented and add your own favorite essential oil or blend.
c. Filtered Water: Depending on where you live, water may have high levels of contaminants. Using filtered water can make a big difference, both in drinking/cooking and in the bath/shower. Filter prices vary, and even the most affordable options are worth the investment.
3. Stress Management: The holidays often create extra levels of stress, for various reasons. Stress is a major factor in illness, so it’s important to seek strategies to alleviate stress during the more chaotic times. To better stress management, the first step is to be aware of its impact. We often can’t control the external sources of stress, but we can learn to control our own response. The next time you feel stressed, try to notice the tension in your body and make a conscious decision to decrease that response. Practice stress-relieving strategies that appeal to you, whether it’s deep breathing, meditation/prayer, or something like exercise or reading. Find what is meaningful, and what works best for you, and use it at every opportunity.
4. Consider Cannabis Supplementation: CBD is a non-intoxicating component of cannabis that has far-reaching immune benefits supported by research, including balancing the immune system, decreasing inflammation, and killing bacteria as strong as MRSA. Not all cannabis formulations are equal for medical use and knowing what to purchase can be confusing. Here’s our blog article on optimal cannabis formulations for guidance on choosing the best product options (we don’t benefit from ANY product sales): http://www.integratedholisticcare.com/blog
5. Emergency Response: If you start to feel sick despite your efforts to stay well, there are immediate interventions that may help to reduce the length and severity of illness. At the first sign of a cold/flu, taking supplements like Vitamin D3, Vitamin C, Zinc, and Virastop enzymes can offer a substantial immune boost. Other options include medicinal teas (Yogi is a reputable brand), and food-sourced support like Elderberry syrup or Echinacea lozenges. Most importantly, listen to your body. Winter is the season we are supposed to slow down. So try to honor the times you feel extra rest is needed, or shorten your to-do list if possible. You’ll feel better in the long run.
All of us at Integrated Holistic Care wish you all the best wellness possible this winter solstice, and hope the above suggestions are helpful for optimizing your health!