by Dr. C Groenewald
It is that time of the year again, colds and flu season.
Both colds and flu are caused by viral infections and can make you feel pretty sick. It is commonly accepted that you can't do much for a mild viral infection except fluids and rest, but that is not true. Your homeopath, naturopath or functional medicine doctor has an entire arsenal of vitamin therapy, herbals and homeopathic medicines that has been proven to decrease the severity and duration of colds and flu.
There are also so many things that you can do at home to boost and strengthen your immune system to protect you from recurrent or severe colds and flu.
Here are 5 tips to boosting your immune system this winter.
1. Eat 7 servings of vegetables per day. A colorful spectrum of vegetables contain the compounds your immune system needs to function optimally.
2. Avoid conventionally reared animal products and produce. Treated with routine antibiotics and growth promoters, this will harm the good bacteria in your gut (where 70% of your immune system resides).
3. Get 7-8 hours of restful sleep every night. Sleep deprivation causes unbalanced cortisol levels which can fuel chronic inflammation and cause chronic illnesses.
4. Avoid sugar. Sugar is the single most harmful food substance that will destroy your healthy gut bacteria and promote leaky gut and chronic low grade inflammation which will leave you with a weakened immune system.
5. Get enough vit D. Vit D has in recent years emerged as a powerful immune modulator. Before taking a vitamin D supplement it is essential that your have your vit D levels tested first as vit D is a fat soluble vitamin and you can therefor cause a vit D toxicity.
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Dr. Marike de Klerk