Thursday, December 25, 2008

Have a Healthy Holiday!

Merry Christmas everyone!

There is nothing worse than being sick for the Holidays and not being able to enjoy all the wonderful sights, smells and sounds that this Season brings. Here are a few healthy tips from my family to yours to keep you feeling healthy and festive.

Everyone should be taking probiotics daily and if you are traveling, you will want to take them with you to help prevent "traveler’s diarrhea" and stomach viruses. Probiotic information could fill up an entire article, but simply put, they are the good bacteria in your intestines that fight viruses, bacteria and keep your immune system functioning properly. If you find yourself in the throws of a stomach virus or food poisoning, increased dosages of probiotics could literally save your life. Try to find a brand that is shelf-stable so that you can easily take it with you. Keep in mind that there are different strains of probiotics for adults and children, so be sure to read the labels carefully. You should also look for a good quality brand that has many different strains and a high bacteria count.

Digestive enzymes are a wonderful addition to your daily health regimen and will help to digest those big dinners that we all tend to eat this time of year and eliminate the gas and bloating afterwards. Cooking food destroys most if not all of the valuable enzymes, so if you are not eating any raw or fermented foods consider taking a supplement. You will want to look for a brand that targets both the upper and lower intestines. Be prepared to spend around $30 for a good quality brand. You do not want to go cheap with these because they may not work as well as you need them too.

Vitamin C is crucial this time of year especially because we tend to eat less fresh fruits and vegetables. Adding a fruit and vegetable supplement like Juice Plus, Barleans, or Garden of Life can be helpful for your overall health and wellness. Did you know that humans, guinea pigs, some primates, some parrots and fruit bats are the only known species that do not produce their own vitamin C? Buffered vitamin C in powdered form is easy to take in juice or water by both adults and children. Chewable vitamin C is best to avoid for children as it can contribute to tooth decay. One of my personal favorites is Emergen-C which is sold in most health and drug stores. It is a powdered vitamin C and mineral complex packaged individually so the are convenient for travel. Rose Hip syrup is also a wonderful source of vitamin C and very delicious.

Fish or Cod Liver Oil are beneficial as an everyday supplement and can be taken by adults, infants and children. During the spring and summer it is best to take fish oil as it does not contain vitamin D. Because the sun’s UVB rays metabolize vitamin D and are the sole source, you do not want to overdose on vitamin D by additionally taking a supplement that contains it. During the fall and winter months vitamin D production is reduced and Cod Liver Oil is a wonderful source. The main reason we take fish oil supplements is for the Omega-3 fatty acids they contain. Standard American diets are deficient in essential fatty acids and need to be dramatically increased.

Herbal remedies and homeopathic remedies are an effective way to boost immunity and stimulate the body’s natural ability to heal itself. Some of the most popular remedies include Echinacea and Astragulus which are incredible immune system boosters. If you have an autoimmune disease, medicinal mushrooms including Reishi, Shiitake, and Maitake are excellent for those with autoimmune diseases because they strengthen rather than boost the immune system. Homeopathic remedies are to be taken based on individual symptoms and there is a remedy for basically everything that ails you.

Armed with these healthy tips you can celebrate confidentially this Holiday Season knowing that you are prepared for the common illnesses that could try to dampen your spirits.

Have a Healthy, Happy Holiday.

The information contained here is not meant to diagnose or treat any disease nor should it be misconstrued as medical advice. If you have medical related questions please consult your Physician or Holistic Doctor.


Probiotic Information:

Herbs and Alternative Medicine:

Nutrition and Supplement Information: