Flu season is predictable every year. It comes about the first to second week of January... which is pretty much the culmination of Halloween, Thanksgiving, holiday parties, end of the year stress, and long nights of celebrating.
Flu and cold season simply means your immune system is exhausted and weakened. Think of it as your body knocking you down so you can rest and recuperate. The elements and climate matter, but if our immune systems are strong, there is no reason that someone sneezing next to us should have much of an effect. Our bodies are continuously telling us how they feel and sometimes with all of the outside noise we simply can't hear it properly [or we choose to ignore it because the symptoms are not convenient.] Once your body reaches its threshold, you will feel it, and you will get sick. Our bodies are designed to heal themselves given the right tools. Prevention however, is always the best way to go.
Here are a few tips to keep your system strong and healthy through the Winter Holiday Season.
- Start each day with at least one cup of hot water with lemon and/or ginger. Sip on hot water as much as possible to clear out your lymphatic system and keep your internal environment clean.
- Stay hydrated during the day, especially if you're indulging in holiday jolliness.
- Don't eat until you are completely stuffed. Leave a little bit of room for digestion. Ayurveda recommends eating to 1/4 capacity.
- Focus on warmed, cooked foods. Raw foods are too cold and difficult to digest for the body. Go easy on the body's digestion.
- Add spices where you can: turmeric, cinnamon, fennel, nutmeg, black pepper, and cumin are excellent digestive aids and immune boosters. They add nice flavor to dishes and beverages like chai's.
- Try to maintain your routine sleep schedule as much as possible. The body likes predictable cycles and rest is important for recovery and rejuvenation.
- Give yourself a daily oil massage.[Ahbyanga] is recommended during any season, but especially during the winter when we tend to experience cooler climates that dry out our skin and nasal passages. A light coat of sesame or olive oil in place of lotions not only helps ground the senses and nourish the skin, but allows for a gentle skin detox while avoiding chemicals found in everyday moisturizers. Two to three teaspoons should be enough for the entire body.
- A light coat of oil on the inside of the nose is an excellent remedy for dry nose. This extra lubrication is a fail-proof way to ensure better sleep, allergy relief, calmer sinuses, and to prevent germs from entering our system in the first place.
- Take a natural prevention supplement if you have a tendency to get sick. Colloidal Silver, Astragalus Root, Elderberry, Oregano Oil, Probiotics, and Turmeric are among my favorites and are very easy to find.
- Do not skip meals. Eat on time, at the same times everyday.
- Take sugar in moderation. Eat twice as many greens as sugar you consume (this includes beverages.) Holidays surround us with sweets but be kind to yourself, and to your waistline. Sugar destroys your immune strength.
- Take the time to rest your mind. Our cells hear everything we think and they feel the stress too. Meditation is an excellent tool for deep rest during the day, which also allows you to calm your mind and detox your cells too!
- Exercise! Find a way to get moving, whether it's a walk around the block with a cup of tea or parking in the last spot in the mall during your holiday shopping, keep your system active. Staying still leads to stagnation which can block the subtle channels.
- Relax. Holidays can be stressful. Everyone is on edge, running late, feeling the financial strain, and tired from a long year of expectations and responsibilities. Find a moment to relax and to let go of stress. Meditation and exercise are great for this, but cuddling up with a loved one to watch a movie or taking a long warm bath are important too. Make time to nurture yourself.
Follow these simple tips and you are sure to enjoy a tissue-free winter. Feel free to message me for personalized suggestions or specific wellness advice. Consultations are available through the holidays.
Cheers to a healthy Holiday Season!