Winter is upon us and along with that we are faced with the dreaded cold and flu season. You will be happy to know that you can prevent illness or shorten the duration of the illness with some simple habits.
Here are some helpful tips to keep you healthy this winter.
- Get enough sleep. Lack of sleep weakens your immune system. Aim for 7-8 hours each night. Kids and teens need more. If you are not feeling well, listen to your body and sleep. Sleep is when the body repairs itself.
- Exercise. The benefits of exercise are well known. Exercise is a natural detox for your body. It helps regulate sugar levels and reduces stress. Aim to be active for at least 30 minutes per day most days of the week.
- Get some natural sunlight. Since Vitamin D levels can drop in the winter, it is important to get natural sunlight for supporting a healthy immune system. Low vitamin D levels can put you at risk for colds, flu and even depression.
- Increase the amount of colorful vegetables and fruits in your diet. Added antioxidants and nutrients will help immune function. Eat garlic, mushrooms, ginger and blueberries for a great antioxidant boost.
- Drink lots of water! If your body is not properly hydrated, the immune system cannot work properly.
- Skip the alcohol. Alcohol suppresses the immune system so you may not be able to fight off a bug already in your system or ones you come into contact with.
- Take a high quality probiotic daily or eat fermented foods.
- Avoid processed foods that are loaded with chemicals and cause immune system disruption in the body. m
- Use essential oils to help prevent and alleviate the discomfort of having a seasonal illness. Essential oils can help boost your body’s immune system. Wash hands often. Prevent the spread of germs by thoroughly washing your hands with plain soap and warm water every time you are in a public place, before eating, after using the bathroom and after shaking hands with people. This is the single most effective thing you can do to prevent the spread of germs.
Here are my go-to products during the winter months in our home:
On Guard (protective blend)- protects immune system , supportive for autoimmune conditions, colds and flu, cold sores, strep throat, and sore throats. Add a drop to tea to warm you up in the morning. Apply a roller bottle to bottoms of the feet morning and night.
Lemon – incredibly purifying to the system and for the air. Promotes health and healing and is a natural detoxifier for the liver and kidneys.
Make a 2oz spray bottle filled with 20 drops Lemon and water. Spray the air a couple of times a day for a non toxic air purifier (great for teachers if you are wanting to kill germs in the classroom or in the office).
Oregano -fights pathogens, kills germs. Especially effective for respiratory and bronchial issues. Add 2 drops of oregano to a steaming bowl of water, make a tent with a towel and inhale for 5-10 minutes Breathe (respiratory blend) – super effective for opening up airways. Add a few drops to your diffuser at night to help with clear breathing and snoring. Apply a few drops to the chest with carrier oil for relief from coughing.
Digestzen (digestive blend) – for stomach issues. For upset stomach, viruses, food poisoning, apply a few drops to stomach area with carrier oil or add 1 drop to water and drink.
Some important tips to keep in mind:
Essential oils are very powerful. Use small amounts more often. Less is more.
Keep your oils in places that will remind you to use them, such as the bathroom or kitchen.
Keep roller bottles filled and on hand, so that when someone in the home needs it, you are prepared.
Tips for daily prevention and immune support:
- Diffuse OnGuard daily. Diffuse 8-10 drops to purify the air and kill germs.
- You can also diffuse lemon, melaleuca and peppermint to clear the airways.
- Gargle with OnGuard and lemon essential oil daily.
- Add a drop of On Guard to green teach each day.
- Add 2-3 drops of lemon essential oil to your water daily.
At the first sign of sickness, or feeling under the weather:
Use Onguard, Frankincense and Copaiba in a roller bottle on feet morning and night. Make a 10ml roller with 10 drops of each and top with carrier oil.
Immediately begin gargling with OnGuard and lemon essential oil. This will help with sore throat pain. You can also apply OnGuard to the throat, but be sure to dilute heavily.
- Diffuse OnGuard, lemon and melaleuca (4 drops each). Switch off with Breathe and lavender.
- Dilute Breathe and apply to chest for congestion and cough.
- Add lemon essential oil to your tea.
- Add essential oils to a veggie cap and swallow. You can use oils such as oregano and OnGuard.
- Take OnGuard beadlets for daily immune support. Take 2-3 every few hours. For flu symptoms, use oregano internally or make the steam bowl as directed above.
- Use lavender to help with sleep. Add 8 drops to your diffuser 30 minutes before bed.
Tips for emotional wellness in the winter months:
- Get outside and get fresh air daily. Go for a run or a walk.
- Open the windows and air out the house for 30 minutes a few times per week.
- Diffuse oils to uplift mood. Choose any citrus oils such as wild orange, citrus bliss, Cheer Blend and lime.
- Oils to increase mental alertness, energy and focus: peppermint, eucalyptus, rosemary, frankincense, Siberian fir, Motivation Blend
- Oils to relax and relieve anxiety/sleep – Serenity blend, lavender, Peace blend, copaiba, vetiver, frankincense, cedarwood.