By Kristine Mahan, Function of Well
Nothing ruins the hype of a vacation quite like the onset of allergies, a cold or other immune system challenges. And because traveling with the contents of a small pharmacy in your bag is a little more than unreasonable, here’s how to treat the root of illness instead of masking its symptoms.
This might be an obvious one, but it’s critical to your timely recovery. Avoid caffeinated beverages that cause dehydration and stick to hot herbal teas instead. Adding fresh lemon juice to plain hot water is a great way to get extra vitamins and minerals into your system. Other things you don’t want to be drinking (or eating, for that matter) include dairy and sugar of all kinds. Dairy and sugar feed the mucus and bacteria that come along with an illness. Even fruit and grains would be better kept at bay until you are on the mend as their carbohydrates are metabolized as sugars in the body.
If you can get your hands on a cup of hot bone broth, this is incredibly restorative to the gut lining and thus good for your immune system. Remember that your immune system is primarily housed in your gut, so what you eat dictates how it responds to invading bacteria and viruses.
Search out a local natural store or a Whole Foods Market. Grab yourself some strong probiotics, ginger or turmeric shots, and high-quality supplements like zinc and goldenseal. Taking just any vitamin C doesn’t equate an immune system boost as you need the entire complex for it to be effective, not just the isolate of ascorbic acid.
Your body is trying to tell you something if you’re experiencing an immune challenge. Make adequate time to rest and give your immunity, adrenals, and nervous system time to restore. Ample restorative sleep is good on any given day, but it’s particularly necessary if you need to recover quickly.
Seek out a broad-spectrum infrared sauna that essentially heats you from the inside out, detoxing your organs of pollutants and infections alike. Saunas that simply blow hot air do not have the same effect as infrared ones.
Kristine is building up a strong community around functional nutrition, sustainability, and wellness. Follow her journey and be prepared for some drool-worthy recipes along the way.