It isn’t as hard to stay healthy as you might think. I used to wonder if it was possible to survive spring without having allergies or catching a cold? I would argue yes. Thankfully. Springtime and I have a love/hate relationship. I welcome the warmth and the beautiful blossoming flowers.
But the allergies. Wow, are the allergies horrible! On top of that, I also tend to catch colds during the springtime. Luckily, we can lower our chances of getting a cold or having allergies with preventative maintenance. By drinking more water, getting enough rest, eating real food, and taking the appropriate additional measures we can almost guarantee to lower our chances of having a sneeze-filled springtime! Here’s what I do to beat the springtime allergies and colds
I am horrible about drinking water. To be honest, I just don’t get thirsty that much. I don’t really drink much of anything. It’s really bad. Water is one of the best things we can put into our bodies. Seriously. I know a lot of people who claim to be fueled by coffee, but the truth is the best fuel for our bodies is water.
Water helps keep us from getting sick simply by flushing the toxins out of our bodies through our kidneys. When I start to feel myself getting sick, I start guzzling water like it’s going out of style.
Water also helps carry oxygen and other nutrients to our cells. Oxygen helps our organs function, and when our organs and cells are doing their jobs we are well (1).
Drinking enough water also produces lymph. Lymph is what carries water and nutrients to the blood and then to cells. When your lymphatic system is blocked, toxins build up and your immune system is lowered (2).
According to one article I read, being dehydrated is one of the leading culprits in allergies. Water helps regulate the histamines, which are our bodies’ defense mechanisms against pollutants. When we aren’t getting our bodies enough water, the histamines work overtime giving us allergies (3).
Another thing I do to prevent colds and allergies is sleep. Sleep is so important, friends! Our bodies were not designed to stay up till midnight. Nighttime is when our organs dump toxins.
Are you familiar with your circadian rhythm? I find it really fascinating. Essentially, our bodies were created with an internal clock. It has optimal times for things like eating, exercising, and yes sleeping. From 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. our organs release toxins and our cells are repaired. If you are awake during that time, your organs aren’t able to expel the waste.
Sleep also allows our bodies to produce cytokines. Cytokines are a protein made by our immune system. They help us when we are feeling sick or stressed. Without sleep, our bodies are unable to produce these cytokines (4).
So, how much sleep do you need? Well, most people suggest about seven to nine hours for adults. A great way to make sure that you are getting adequate sleep is setting a routine bedtime for yourself. I’m going to try to start going to bed at 11 p.m. every night and waking up at 6 a.m. each morning. Our bodies do well under a routine (5). Remember sleep is meant to be restorative.
Eat real food
What we eat is so important. I do not have a perfect diet. Not even close. But when I start to sense a cold or allergies coming on, I start loading up on real foods. Real foods are things that we can find in nature. Fruit and vegetables, meat, grains, and nuts are all real foods. Things that are processed, which is pretty much anything with sugar or flour, are not real foods. In fact, I have an article where I talk about how to eat real food on a budget.
Now, we obviously know about vitamin C’s role in cold prevention. Oranges or citrus fruits, in general, are some of the first things we think of when it comes to preventing colds. Some other foods high in vitamin C are broccoli, cauliflower, kiwi, sweet potatoes, and many more!
Alternatively, sugar is the worst thing you can eat for a cold or allergies. Sugar is absolutely horrible for our bodies. Honestly, we should all go cold turkey on it. But we know that it is so addicting and I know that I would personally have a tough time giving up ice cream. But, the fact is that sugar weakens our immune systems. Oh, and if you have bad allergies you might also want to try cutting out sugar. Sugar causes inflammation, which makes your allergies much worse.
After I’ve made sure to drink enough water, get enough sleep, and eat real food, I take some additional steps to ensure that my body remains in tiptop shape.
I use essential oils. The absolute best essential oil for promoting wellness is Young Living‘s Thieves oil. Thieves is a blend that has: cinnamon, clove, eucalyptus, rosemary, and lemon. Many people say that it smells like Chrismas. You can put Thieves on your throat, on your feet, or you can take it internally. I only suggest being sure not to get it anywhere near your eyes. It will burn. If it is too hot for your skin, try using a carrier oil like coconut oil or olive oil to dilute it.
Another great thing to take is camu camu. Camu camu is a vitamin C powerhouse. You can add it to your morning smoothie! If you thought oranges were good, powdered camu camu has SIX HUNDRED TIMES more vitamin C than oranges.
Finally, nothing helps prevent or get rid of a cold like a nice sweat session. I like to hop in the sauna when I start feeling bad. Sweating helps detox the body. Before you sauna make sure you check with a medical professional to see if it is safe for you and always be sure to replenish your nutrients after.
Getting a cold is no fun. Having allergies is no fun. Luckily, if you follow the suggestions in this post you will find that your allergies and colds start to become rarer. I believe that when we give our bodies the nutrients and care it needs it will do it’s best to help us stay healthy. This springtime when you feel allergies or a cold coming on, instead of immediately grabbing for the pills, try drinking more water, getting enough sleep, eating real food and avoiding sugar, and taking additional steps, like using essential oils, taking camu camu and saunaing.