Protect yourself winters are here

Winters are almost on your doorstep and it is time to protect your children and yourself from the woos of winters. Is it that simple? Well, simple and natural ways along with a bit of organic care can work well in your way. Now, your next question will be how?

winter care

Diets, homemade Ayurvedic concoctions and exercise are the best way to stay in cheerful and healthy spirits throughout the cold season.

What you should definitely eat?
Top 5 things which are backed with scientific and physiological evidence for their role in enhancing as well as protecting your immune system are foods containing Vitamin D, Vitamin C, Zinc, Green teas and antioxidants.

Vitamin D
Were you aware that Vitamin D levels fall down to dangerous levels during winters in most of the people? To avoid this, the best way is to get Vitamin D from natural sources. Sun is the absolute best natural source of Vitamin D and helps in strengthening the immune system to a great extent. Mushrooms, cod liver oil, fatty fishes such as Salmon and Mackerel, organ meats are other sources of Vitamin D.

Vitamin C
There is conflicting evidence regarding the role of Vitamin C in boosting immune system. Latest research concludes that Vitamin C works well in tandem with other micronutrients in improving immunity.

It is seen that Vitamin C level goes down during infections and stress. Adequate supplies of Vitamin C will bring down the symptoms of common cold and other respiratory infections. Vitamin C taken during winter season is of special benefit to the children. Vitamin C helps in boosting the immune function and also brings don the frequency of colds during winters. When used along with Vitamin E, it works synergistically to act as an antioxidant. Some of the fruits and vegetables which are good sources of Vitamin C are berries, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cantaloupe, cauliflower, grapefruit, nectarines, oranges, papaya, sweet potato, strawberries and tomatoes.

Zinc is an essential nutrient which plays an essential role in developing and maintaining the healthy functioning of the immune system in the body. Women and children are especially devoid of adequate supplies of zinc and it makes it important for them to have zinc through natural supplements in order to maintain healthy immune system. Lean red meat, sea food along with wholegrain bread, nuts and fortified cereals are some good and natural sources of zinc.

Experts all over the world are of the opinion that fruits and vegetables rich in antioxidants act as the best defense against the sniffles and sneezes caused in winters. The carotenoids and the antioxidant allicin possess antiviral properties and are essential for a strong immune system. Antioxidants help in scavenging the free radicals and thus prevent and repair the damage caused by them. Natural foods are considered to be the best sources of antioxidants and helps in boosting the immunity better than antioxidant supplements. Vitamins such as Vitamin C are also rich in antioxidant properties and hence are extremely useful in protecting and strengthening the immunity.

Green teas
There is ample scientific evidence today that consumption of green tea leaves a positive effect on mind and body. It has great potential in strengthening the immune system and also protects the body cells against any form of oxidative cell damage. Green teas are rich in antioxidants and this makes them helpful in running the immune system normally and effectively.

Homemade Ayurvedic concoctions
Ayurveda provides tried and tested techniques to strengthen and improve the immune system in children and adults both. Some homemade Ayurvedic concoctions have been efficiently utilized through the colder season of the year to boost immunity. Various ingredients used in these mixtures such as turmeric, Ashwagandha, Vitamin D3 and Chyawanprash have been used for their health benefits.

Every morning a dose of turmeric, Ashwagandha and Vitamin D3 along with Chyawanprash with warm milk can boost the immunity. Children are known to benefit from giving a paste of turmeric with raw honey. They can also be given chewable colostrum and chyawanprash.

In this, Ashwagandha is known to relieve stress and support the health of immune system. Chyawanprash is rich in antioxidants, Vitamin C along with various beneficial herbs and is used for its role in supporting the immune system.

The dose of these Ayurvedic and herbal remedies can be adjusted as per the need of the child or adult. In case of a cold, the dose can even be increased.

Essential winter diet

The best way to keep healthy and strong during winters is the use of natural and healthy foods.  Fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes and light dairy products are considered to be the best diet during winters. Organically grown food products and vegetarian meals are best because they contain more minerals and also do not have toxic chemicals.

Certain spices used in our kitchen such as turmeric, cumin, coriander, fennel, dry ginger, cinnamon and black pepper have been found to be immune boosting in nature. They not only give good flavor to the food but also support digestion.  The use of immune boosting foods such as apples, insoluble and soluble fibers, sweet juicy fruits and leafy greens have antioxidant properties and hence are helpful in strengthening the immunity.

Ayurveda also recommends the use of butter and ‘ghee’ to boost the immunity. Added to this certain carefully taken measures such as avoiding overcooking of food, eating at  a proper time and an appropriate quantity of food and using herbs and food which suit our body type also help in maintaining health and strengthening immunity.

These small but effective natural ways will go a long way in keeping you healthy and help you brave the cold season easily. So, this season go green, be healthy.

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