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With the holidays upon us, for many this means traveling and being on-the-go, a lot! Add to that the stress of the season and this can certainly put an extra burden on our immune system. If you want to fully enjoy your travel while still taking the necessary steps to protect yourself, read on.
Here are My 6 Tips for Supporting Your Immune System While Traveling*:
1) Eat Well and Stay Hydrated
Eating on the go can certainly be a bit more challenging than cooking and eating a balanced meal at home. Prioritizing nutrient-dense, whole foods like dark leafy greens, quality proteins and healthy fats, while limiting processed foods and sugar (which may weaken the immune system) 1http://www.progressivehealth.com/does-eating-sugar-increase-your-risk-of-influenza.htm can be beneficial for promoting good immune function. And don’t forget the water! Hydration is especially important with air travel. Flying can cause more rapid dehydration and planes are quite dry. Be sure you are adequately hydrated before your day of travel begins and have a plan in place for staying hydrated while you are on the go, packing water or a refillable water bottle whenever you can.
2) Prioritize Your Sleep
Sleep is crucial to a well-functioning immune system and managing inflammation. Before, during and after your travel, do the best that you can to prioritize your sleep. Sleep is one of THE most important and often overlooked foundational aspects of our health. Sleep is critical to many ongoing, vital processes in the body, but it’s especially important when we are warding off the nasties. Our body repairs and rebuilds itself while we sleep. The more fatigued we are the more susceptible we can be to illness. 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night is a great goal for supporting the body and the immune system. 2https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3256323/ If you need help, try this Sleep Meditation or consider Melatonin supplementation, like the MegaFood Melatonin Berry Good Gummies
3) Manage Your Stress and Support Your Adrenals
Stress can cause inflammation in the body and if the adrenal glands and cortisol, both of which are involved in the body’s stress response system, are constantly struggling to keep up, it will most certainly affect your immune system. Travel can be especially challenging and stressful on the body and this is why folks often find themselves under the weather after a busy travel season. Before, during and after your travel, take the time to implement simple stress management practices that work for you: your self-care routines like journaling, deep breathing, meditation, a gentle walk, an epsom salt bath with calming essential oils, etc. No matter where in the world your travels take you, create space and find time to relax and chill out, get out into nature and feel grounded – this can offer so much support for your immune system and other essential systems of the body.
4) Move Your Body
Exercise and movement helps to improve the circulation of the body’s lymphatic system. It doesn’t need to be extreme or intense at all. When you get to where you are going, consider a little gentle movement like walking or even just a little gentle bouncing (even dancing, jumping or rebounding on a trampoline) these are really great ways to improve lymphatic flow. This system of the body helps toxins to be cleared out of the body and allows the nutrients you are consuming to be delivered where they need to go.
5) Consider Immune Supporting* Supplements and Superfoods
A few of my favorites include Vitamin C, Elderberry, Zinc and Echinacea. My go-to, trusted supplement for immune support,* especially when traveling, is MegaFood Immune Defense*. It is made with Vitamin C, Zinc and Black Elderberry, together with bitter and phytonutrient-rich herbs, including echinacea and andrographis. When you feel the need, take two tablets three times per day for five days to support your immune system when you need it most.* The perfect support prior to travel and while you are away and on the road.
– MegaFood Immune Defense* features:
- Vitamin C and Zinc – both of which are nutrients essential for healthy immune function*
- Black Elderberry fruit can be used in the early stages of seasonal challenges to support immune function*
- Bitter and phytonutrient-rich herbs, echinacea and andrographis, known for powering the immune system*
– Bone Broth – The glycine found in bone broth has been shown to support digestion, support gut health (which is home to much of our immune system) and help reduce inflammation. 3https://journals.lww.com/co-clinicalnutrition/Abstract/2003/03000/L_Glycine__a_novel_antiinflammatory,.13.aspx Bone broth is rich in gelatin, collagen and amino acids which can support the gut, improve healing, and help support the health of individual immune cells. From a properly functioning digestive system to a strong immune system and well functioning brain – our gut is foundational to our vitality.*
– Probiotics and/or fermented foods are another great way to support the health of the gut and it can be a really great way to rebalance the microbiome which is home base for a majority of the immune system.* Read more about how to find the probiotic supplement that is right for you and the benefits of a quality probiotic.
– Some of my other immune support go-to’s include oregano oil, adaptogenic mushrooms, and colloidal silver. You can read more about other immune supportive foods and supplements I recommend and include here.*
6) Finally, Please Protect Yourself and Others
Wash your hands. Avoid touching things when you are in public and then touching your face. Your mucus membranes like your mouth, nose and eyes can be little germ portals if you are not careful. Also, be sure to cover your mouth if you are coughing or sneezing, especially in public. If you’re sick and you want to avoid passing it to others the best thing you can do is stay home and allow your body the opportunity to rest. Don’t try to be a hero. Stay home and take care of yourself. However, if staying home isn’t an option or changing flights isn’t an easy feat – if you are sick or even if you are immune compromised or you simply wish to be extra cautious, please consider wearing a mask while in public. It’s a really great way to stay protected and to protect others. Illness happens and sometimes travel plans can’t be changed, so whenever possible try to be incredibly respectful to others to avoid spreading it.
Consider having your Vitamin D levels checked: Low Vitamin D is often associated with seasonal challenges and adequate levels are important for health and vitality. 4https://www.jabfm.org/content/22/6/698 Consider having your Vitamin D levels evaluated by your healthcare provider and supplementing with to support a healthy immune system.*
With a healthy gut being paramount to a healthy body, especially a strong immune system please check out my 9 tips for good gut health during the holidaysto protect and support your immune system this season!*
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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