Another month has flown by! Now we are in October, which is one of my favorite months! I love the fall for so many reasons…the colder nights, Halloween, watching scary movies, the beautiful colors that the leaves change (if you live somewhere where they do, which I don’t), and it is my birthday month! i did make it to Julian last weekend, which is the perfect fall activity and I had the chance to see some different colored trees. I'm trying to go to Wisconsin this weekend, so I'm hoping to get to see some pretty leaves and fall weather there.
Although there are many great things about the Fall, a common negative attribute is that a lot of people start to get sick with the change in seasons. Our bodies tend to build up toxins in the summer heat that can lead to coughs, migraines, and stuffy noses. This is because our digestion naturally slows during the summer. 80% of your immune system is located in the gut, so it is vital to strengthen the digestive system in order to build up your immune system in preparation for the winter.
So, what can you do in order to strengthen your digestive system and immune system?
Make sure you are following a healthy diet that contains plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables and unprocessed foods. Processed foods are difficult for the body to digest, which will weaken your digestive system, so they should be avoided as much as possible. If you can buy fresh ingredients, try to make as much as you can from scratch. Including fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet will provide a lot of the vitamins and minerals that your need. Some foods that are good for boosting your immunity are garlic, ginger, oily fish, berries, cruciferous vegetables (kale, broccoli, cauliflower), greens and chicken soup/bone broth (preferably homemade). Try to include plenty of these foods in your diet.
Take a good quality multivitamin with minerals to make sure that you are getting the vitamins and minerals that you need. Most people don’t receive an adequate amount of the variety of vitamins and minerals in their diets. It is best to take a food based multivitamin as the hard capsules are more difficult for the body to digest and absorb. Food based vitamins are easier for your body to break down, so you can actually absorb the nutrients. Standard synthetic vitamins (like they type that you get at the grocery store) are often made from stuff that is not good for your body. I personally take a food based Multivitamin with minerals, cod liver oil, and drink a greens mix daily.
Make sure that you are getting enough sleep. It is well known that lack of sleep can increase your chances of getting sick. Lack of sleep can also worsen stress related immune depression. So, make sure that you are getting your recommended 7-9 hours. It is best to try and stay on a regular sleep schedule, even on the weekends.
Take a probiotic. For optimal digestion and immune function, there needs to be a balance of 85% good bacteria and 15% bad bacteria. Adding a probiotic to your diet will increase the good bacteria, which will improve your digestion, sleep, skin, and allow you to lose weight if needed. You can either take a probiotic capsule, or you can eat probiotic foods such as raw sauerkraut, kimchi, Kombucha tea, and coconut water kefir.
Drink lemon water first thing in the morning. This will help stimulate your digestion, release toxins from the liver, jumpstart your digestive enzymes, and it contains Vitamin C. You can make it by adding the juice of one lemon to 1 cup of room temperature water.
Exercise. It is a great way to destress, and stress will suppress the immune system. Exercise can improve your body’s ability to fight off harmful bacteria, and is one of the best ways to boost your immune system. Aim for the recommended 30 minutes on most days of the week. Even going for a walk will get your blood flowing, which will improve your circulation, which is needed to pump oxygen and nutrients to the vital organs in your body.
Do a cleanse. A cleanse will help remove the toxins that are stored in your body, decrease inflammation, and improve your digestion, which will improve your immunity. I am currently offering my Eat Clean, Get Lean Fall Cleanse. For more information on my seasonal cleanse, click here.
Use essential oils as many of them have powerful cleansing, purifying, antifungal, antiparasitic, antibacterial, and antiseptic properties. They are made from the extracts of plants, so they are very concentrated, are 50-70x more powerful than herbs, so you only need to use 1-2 drops. Since they are made from oil, they can penetrate the cells (unlike medications) to eliminate threats and help cells on the inside and out. They can offer an an alternative to synthetic options for immune support, support the body’s natural antioxidant defenses, support and maintain a healthy immune system, protect against environmental threats, and support healthy respiratory function. For more information on essential oils, please contact me here or by emailing me at email@example.com..