One of the biggest challenges to our immune system is stress and anxiety. Long term exposure undoubtedly leads to a lower immunity.
In the short term, our behaviour changes when we are experiencing these emotions. You tend to act in a different way, we take less car of ourselves and it is these very actions which can have a direct influence on our immune systems.
The majority of our immunity is based in the gut. A healthy gut equals strong immunity. To have a healthy gut we need a diverse diet and a stress-free life. Yes, that is an oversimplification, but it isn’t too far wrong as an introduction. As a registered Nutritional Therapist and Nutritionist, I quite often get asked about specific foods to eat, however, whilst we are healthy, the best approach is a holistic program which encompasses our mind, body and soul. Once illness creeps in, a more targeted intervention is required.
So, for your daily immune boosting schedule be sure to include the following;
- Start the day with a positive attitude. Maybe you could set positive intentions and position yourself as a winner. Some people may choose to recite mantra’s, affirmations, practice meditation or journal. It’s not the action that is important but the reflection and calmness.
- Ensure that you get some movement into your day. This will vary as to what this is for everyone. The benefits of exercise for mental health is now indisputable. Some people may choose to go for a run, practice yoga, follow an online fitness video, for others it may be as simple as walking up and down the stairs several times and taking breaks from their desk at regular intervals.
- Be positive and kind to yourself, really think about the words you use. The gut brain axis is two way and our thoughts really do affect your body. Stress and anxiety are not good for our delicate gut.
- Isolation can give rise to anxiety and loneliness. Join forces with other small businesses, join online networking groups or create your own circle where you ‘meet’ regularly to provide support.
- Make sure do something you love every day. Fun and laughter really are good for us and our gut. Try to avoid eating when stressed or anxious. We can’t properly digest our food in this state and this leads an unhappy gut.
Now we get to food!!!!
- Some of the biggest challenges for our gut are processed and high added sugar foods. Cook from scratch using fresh predominantly plant-based produce. This is the simplest and by far the most important change you can make. In times of stress, sometimes we reach for pre-packaged ready to go food and we see it as easy, however our gut finds it challenging as these tend to not be the healthiest options and are full of artificial ingredients. Go on fall in love with cooking.
- Focus on your added sugar count for the day. I don’t mean actually adding it up, but just be conscious of how many things you are eating with added sugar and keep it to a minimum. Most processed foods will have some added sugar in it and whilst it is ‘comforting’ psychological, it is not comforting to our gut.
- Alcohol, caffeine and sugar are all stimulants, we use them to lift us and give us energy. However, our gut doesn’t really appreciate them and are best avoided.
If you’re not sure whether you are getting all the nutrients you need or simply want to improve your diet, I can help you with an in-depth dietary analysis. This analysis will include a report, personalised recommendations and an evaluation of whether medications are likely to be causing nutrient depletion. This package is all for the introductory price of £50.