The secret is out (and it’s not found on a drug store shelf)! There are lots of ways to boost your immunity naturally – many that you can do without too much extra effort (just healthy decision making).
Here are 10 secrets to boosting your immunity this winter.
Did you know that the digestive system is home to more than 500 different types of bacteria? And that’s not just a bunch of organisms sneaking a free ride. We have a symbiotic relationship with many healthy, “friendly” bacteria. We provide their home and they help keep us healthy. Bacteria aid in intestinal health and assist in digesting food. They also help the immune system by challenging it in a “friendly” way. Think of it as a scrimmage to prepare for the big game.
There is currently a large amount of research going on to investigate the extent of probiotic benefits. But what we do know is good and getting better. In 2011, a Yale University review concluded that probiotics are effective for, among other things: treating diarrhea in children, treating ulcerative colitis, preventing pouchitis (inflammation of the intestines), and treating and preventing some types of eczema.
Recent research from the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sports stated that New Zealand Athletes reported 40% fewer colds and gastrointestinal infections when they took a probiotic as compared to a placebo group.
I also recommend probiotics to anyone how has undergone a round of antibiotics. An antibiotic’s job is to kill of bacteria that it comes in contact with and it does not discriminate between good and bad bacteria. While it may serve its intended purpose and knock out the bad bacteria, it will leave your system in a shambles by taking down the good bacteria that your body needs to function. A good quality probiotic will help to rebuild that delicate but oh so important bacteria-rich environment.
[I’ll take this moment to mention, without naming names, that yogurt brands that tote their ability regulate digestive health through their probiotic qualities are missing the mark (usually not even hitting the target). While they may contain some probiotics, they are all so full of sugars, chemicals, and lactose that can wreck other parts of your healthy diet. Ship the dairy aisle and ask your trusted health care practitioners to recommend a quality probiotic without the extra toxins!]
Check back later this week for the last way to power through this cold season (and weather) to maintain a happy, healthy you.