Back to School Immune Boosters
We all know that back to school means that students will meet up with a lot of people who've traveled near and far. Sometimes, instead of souvenirs, people bring illnesses. Getting sick at the beginning of school is clearly not on anyone's list of fun things to do. Use these immune boosters to help keep you healthy as you head back to school.
There's probably no better immune system booster than eating well. This may seem challenging when facing cafeteria food, but many schools and universities now offer healthier choices. Get steamed vegetables, fresh fruits, whole grains and lean meats instead of heavily processed foods. If you think about it logically, our bodies were built to run on real food. The more your diet includes real whole food, the more nutrients your body will get.
Regular exercise boosts and supports your immune system. Exercise can help flush harmful bacteria from the body and lungs. It also helps to circulate white blood cells faster. It also can help protect your body from stress hormones.
Many believe that zinc is helpful for colds and flu. It does help fight off infections and heal wounds. If faced with a sore throat, zinc lozenges have been a popular go to remedy. The jury is still out on whether or not zinc really does help with the cold itself. As far as an RDA for zinc, most people in the U.S. get enough zinc in their diet.
Many use Echinacea for colds, but it may be more useful for treating symptoms rather than actually curing the illness. Echinacea has been used for a variety of infections such as and illnesses such as genital herpes, vaginal yeast infections, urinary tract infections and tonsillitis. This remedy was originally used by the Native Americans of the plains.
Astragalus is another time honored herb that has been used in China for hundreds of years. It is thought that astragalus is an antioxidant and it helps to treat colds and respiratory infections. Other uses include arthritis and asthma.
Don't Drink Alcohol or Smoke (Older Students)
It may seem obvious, but smoking, drinking or doing drugs put stress on your body. Anything that stresses your body can reduce the immune system's ability to fight.
Wash Your Hands
Why do doctors always wash their hands? So they don't spread germs around. The CDC says that clean hands save lives. In fact, they refer to it as a "do it yourself vaccine". Experts recommend washing your hands for 20 seconds before eating, cooking, after using the toilet, touching animals, pet food or garbage.
Quinoa Curry Salad
Quinoa is a versatile grain like food that is gluten free (if processed in a gluten free facility). Quinoa can be used as a substitute for dishes that ask for bulgar and sometimes rice. It is high in protein and B vitamins.
1 cup uncooked quinoa
1/2 chopped onion
2 cups water
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 teaspoons curry powder
1/2 tsp garlic
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup diced celery
1/4 cup chopped green onions
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
3 tablespoons currants
1 cup yogurt
2 tsp salt
1/2 cup chopped cucumber
1 tsp dried mint
1. Saute onions, curry and garlic for about 2 minutes. Add quinoa and 2 cups water; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 15 minutes or until tender. Add salt, stir and let cool.
2. Add celery, thinly sliced green onions, chopped cilantro, and currants to cooled quinoa.
3. Chop and wash romaine lettuce, place some quinoa mixture on top of the lettuce. Top with cucumber yogurt mixture for dressing.
Staff Pick - Psyllium Husk Fiber
This fiber is easy to use and really helps keeps your body running smoothly and it has a nice orange flavor. If you don't like to drink your fiber, it is available in capsule form too.