5 Tips to Help you Slide Into Winter Wellness

There are a lot of ways we can be proactive about staying healthy, especially during the colder months. Here’s a quick list of five of our favourite tips to keep immune health top of mind this winter season.

1: Keep it real

Choose real, whole food options. Colourful vegetables filled with vitamins and minerals, quality sources of protein, healthy fat and fibre are all vital for proper immune function. Processed foods, alcohol, sugar and starches bog down your white blood cells' ability to battle germs, so pass on that box of candy and stick to only a glass or two of wine. Refined sugar can lead to inflammatory responses in the body which can suppress your immune function for up to 8-12 hours after indulging in sweets.

2: Stay hydrated

A combination of winter’s low humidity and overheating rooms can dry out nasal and throat passages, making airways more vulnerable to bacteria and viruses. Keeping well hydrated helps mucous membranes stay moist and help to keep undesirable bugs at bay. A good rule of thumb is to drink eight ounces of water every one to two hours during the day. You can always add a fresh squeeze of lemon juice or mix in a tasty effervescent drink that’s packed with mineral support to help alkalize your body and nourish your adrenal glands.

3: Ready set… rest!

Sometimes enjoying a bit of hibernation time in the winter is just what the body needs. It’s time to slow down, rest and recharge. Recharging looks different from person to person. It could mean getting an extra hour of sleep, getting outside in nature, or remembering to take your supplements! Managing stress really takes centre stage here. Chronic stress elevates cortisol which can impair the thyroid, immune function, sleep, and even digestion. Look for healthy ways to decompress this winter: go for a massage, take a hot bath, try out a new hobby, or learn to meditate with the help of an app.

Daily movement is a great way to care for your health; test out an online yoga class, or get outside for a winter hike. Exercise helps to stimulate immune function, manage stress, and improve overall mood - triple whammy! If you can’t find the time or energy to recharge you may benefit from supplementing with adaptogenic herbs like ashwagandha and Rhodiola, which can be helpful in lowering elevated cortisol and managing stress.

4: Be Proactive

Stock up on some of these natural remedies to support immune function. Being prepared with these on hand may help lessen symptoms should you get hit with a bug unexpectedly.

  • Multivitamin and mineral support: Taking a good quality daily multivitamin and mineral supplement helps to ensure adequate nutrient support which can build up the immune system. It’s important to factor in that it may take two to three months of supplementation before the immune system gets stronger. It can be challenging to obtain sufficient nutrition from food alone since the majority of our food today is devoid of many essential nutrients. CanPrev’s trusted Immuno Multi formula has all of the core essentials plus 10 powerful antioxidants essential for daily immune support!
  • B Vitamins: B vitamins play an important role in the balance of a healthy stress response and proper immune functioning. Low levels of folic acid and B12 in particular can actually inhibit the activity of important immune cells.
  • Zinc + Vitamin C - A match made in heaven: Vitamin C is always top of mind for immune function, but did you know animals that produce their own vitamin C ramp up production when under stress? Vitamin C is an important part of adrenal function and the stress response, and when it comes to the immune system pairing zinc with vitamin C is a no-brainer. Studies have shown that the combination has proven effective against symptoms of the common cold, repairing tissues and supporting skin health. The mineral zinc works as a ‘gatekeeper’ for your immune system, keeping all of your immune cells primed and ready for action when needed. It ensures your system doesn’t overreact either. A little zinc may go a long way when it comes to infections. Studies show that zinc has both direct and indirect antiviral effects.
  • Adaptogenic herbs: Should you find yourself bogged down with a cold or flu virus, Cold-Pro Immune Formula is packed with vitamin C and zinc, reishi mushroom, antioxidants, and herbs like Andrographis, astragalus, echinacea and American ginseng to support the
    immune system and combat upper respiratory tract infections.
  • Vitamin D - Sunshine: Most of us find ourselves spending more time indoors in the winter and we’re not getting quite as much sunshine on our skin. Without our daily dose of sunshine, a vitamin D supplement may be the next best thing to keep our immune system
    strong while we’re hibernating inside. Look for vitamin D3 - research suggests the body uses D3 twice as effective as vitamin D2.

5: Laughter is the best medicine

Studies show that laughter boosts the immune system for at least 24 hours. A Harvard University study showed that watching violent tv and movie scenes tended to weaken the immune system, while a light, loving flick stimulated it! So don’t hold back from a good belly laugh when a hilarious opportunity presents itself!

Wishing you a healthy, happy winter season!