Boost Your Immune System During the Holiday Season
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By Joash Guevarra
This coming Christmas, you might be looking forward to spending more time with friends and families. Moreover, you might be drooling at the thought of tasting your favourite foods and drinks. However, it is essential to remember that the holiday season is no excuse to forget about being healthy. While it may be difficult due to the festive atmosphere, it is certainly not impossible.
1. Eat Foods High in Vitamin D
Around 35% of adults in the US lack vitamin D. According to Clinical Dietitian Kristin Gustashaw, without enough Vitamin D, people can easily get sick, affecting what could have been a fun and memorable Christmas.
Therefore, reaching the daily recommended vitamin D intake is essential, especially if you don’t spend enough time in the sun. Some types of food that you can eat are egg yolks, milk, cheese, and salmon. Besides these natural food sources, you can also take supplements in the form of capsules, gummies, tablets, liquid drops, and more.
2. Add More Protein-Rich Foods
Since it is the holiday season, indulging in mince pies, gingerbread cookies, or yule log cakes is tempting. However, if you want to avoid overeating, Nutritional Ecology Professor David Raubenheimer advises people to remember to eat foods consisting of protein to feel full for a longer time (alongside balancing their sweet treats!).
Most protein sources contain what is known as heme iron. So eating your turkey, chicken, and other meats ensures you have enough energy throughout Christmas. Moreover, it also improves your metabolism, allowing your body to burn calories faster, which can help you maintain or lose weight.
The following are types of food you can eat during the holiday season:
• Lean Beef
3. Have More Foods That Boost the Immune System
Catching up on your Christmas shopping list can be stressful. So aside from giving yourself enough rest, don’t forget to add foods rich in vitamins and minerals to strengthen your defences and prevent illnesses from ruining your merry holiday season.
However, it would help if you balanced what you eat. For example, you should take the time to exercise, rest, and even go for a healthy meal. Moreover, you can also buy some supplements to provide your body with essential vitamins and minerals. After all, Vice President of Embria Health Sciences Larry Robinson explains that a strong immune system takes more than just getting enough vitamin C. Lastly, you should also give yourself enough time to relax and unwind, as this season can be stressful.
The following are some examples of immune-boosting foods you can add to your diet this holiday season:
• Green Tea
4. Consider Eating Some Vegan Food
Getting your protein and vitamin D from meat products, like salmon, chicken, pork, and more, is one of many ways to reach the daily recommended intake. But, for this coming Christmas, you can also prepare healthy yet delicious meals using vegan ingredients. And if you’re conscious about your weight, going for a vegan diet can be helpful for your weight loss goals, according to Cardiologist Jeffrey Soble.
Here are some examples of vegan food that you can try:
• Legumes (beans, peas & lentils)
• Dairy alternatives (soy milk & almond milk)
5. Try Going for Some Tea
Is Christmas not Christmas without eggnog or mulled wine? While Christmas should be when you can completely relax, don’t forget to drink moderately. And if you want something to substitute for it, you can try going for a cup of tea.
The following are examples of teas you can drink that are good for your digestion:
• Peppermint: Good for soothing upset stomachs
• Ginger: Helps people with nausea, cramping, bloating, and indigestion
• Chamomile: Treats indigestion, diarrhoea, vomiting, and stomach pain
• Cinnamon: Offers anti-inflammatory benefits that are good for stomach cramps and intestinal spasms
6. Look After Your Feet Before a Christmas Party
Besides eating, drinking, and bonding with your loved ones, you will also take a trip to your favourite shopping malls to buy gifts. However, your feet can easily get tired, especially after walking for several hours while wearing heels. According to Dr. Travis Jensen, a podiatrist at Banner Health in Arizona, continuing to do so puts more pressure on the ball of your foot and the metatarsal heads or middle joints. So if you’re planning on dancing or participating in some party games this Christmas, take frequent breaks and wear comfortable shoes, and your feet will thank you for it.
Besides resting and wearing the right footwear, why not try a foot massage. The last thing you want to think about is aching feet.
Spending Christmas with your loved ones allows you to relax and feel relief from most of your daily responsibilities and chores. However, you might also need to remember to take proper care of yourself as you shop for gifts, share meals, and more. Follow the 6 tips above to help you stay healthy and fit while enjoying the festive atmosphere of the holiday season.
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