How To Fight The Common Cold

Even the healthy get sick once in a while.  Despite your best efforts sometimes you let your guard down for just a second and a nasty bug gets in causing a cold or flu.  Luckily you can fight the common cold naturally.

How To Fight The Common Cold And Flu

 

We all are exposed to bugs and viruses each and every day.  So why is it that some people seem to get sick all the time while others rarely get sick and when they do it’s just a mild form of what everyone else got?  There are a few key lifestyle factors that impact if and how often we have a cold or flu.

A strong immune system is a must for fighting off all the potential invaders we encounter each day.  If your immune system is too busy/overactive fighting off food sensitivities, inflammation, or attacking your own cells (autoimmunity), it can’t do the job it is meant to do which is fight off bugs and viruses.

For a really strong immune system you need optimum nutrition, proper stress management, 7-9 hours of quality sleep, and regular exercise.

Tips For Strengthening Your Immune System

 

  • Exercise 3-5 times per week.
  • Avoid inflammatory foods such as sugar, dairy, soy, corn and grains.
  • Manage stress with exercise, deep breathing, meditation, yoga or whatever calming activity works for you.
  • Aim to get 7-9 hours of sleep every night.
  • Bonus Tip: incorporate homemade bone broth into your diet several times a week.

What To Do If You’re Already Sick

 

  • Avoid grains and sugar. These foods will only make the inflammation you have worse and feed any bugs in your system.
  • Drink homemade bone broth. Now is the time to drink that broth.  Bone broth is high in gelatin, collagen, and minerals that will soothe your stomach and aid in healing the gut which is where the majority of your immune system is.
  • Drink water. Staying hydrated will help regulate body temperature, remove waste, flush toxins, and aid the body in its natural healing processes.
  • Try herbal tea. Look for teas that are anti-inflammatory and soothing for a sore throat.
  • Use Oil of Oregano. Tastes a bit nasty but really works!  Oregano is a natural antibiotic.  Read the directions on the label, but generally you add 4 drops to some water and drink it back. Because it is a natural antibiotic it is important to only use it for a short time, so just for the duration of your illness and you’ll want to restore healthy gut flora.  Be sure to get some probiotics in pill form or better yet by eating foods high in probiotics during and/or after you’re finished taking your oil of oregano.  If you’re using probiotics at the same time as you’re taking oil of oregano be sure to not use them at the same time.  Do not take oil of oregano if pregnant. 
  • Probiotics help to restore healthy gut flora.  Remember most of your immune system is located in your gut.
  • Sleep as much as you can.  Take a day or two off of work so you don’t spread your germs and sleep as much as possible.  Your body needs to rest in order to heal itself.

Kick That Bug In The Butt And Get On With Your Life!

 

No one likes to get sick.  It ruins pretty much everything and saps your energy.  When everyone around you starts getting sick, take the preventive approach mentioned above to lessen your chances of getting sick.  Better yet, live a healthy and preventative lifestyle the majority of the time!

 

Are These Foods Good Or Bad?

Nutrition can be confusing due to all the mixed messages we get.  A lot of people have been scared off perfectly healthy foods because they heard somewhere that they were bad for them.  I want to talk about some foods that are perfectly healthy that a lot of people avoid because of misinformation.   Let’s see if these foods are good or bad.

Healthy Foods That You Heard Were Bad For You

Does peanut butter makes you fat?

No! Peanut Butter is high in fat but that doesn’t mean it’s
fattening.  It’s high in healthy fat and also provides protein and folate.  However, peanut butter is a concentrated source of calories, so you don’t want to go overboard.  A tablespoon (90 calories) or two of peanut butter is all you really need to feel satisfied.

Do eggs increase your cholesterol?

No!  Studies have shown that the dietary cholesterol in eggs does not substantially increase our blood cholesterol level.   Eggs are a great source of protein and the yolks are packed with vitamins.  Eating up to one egg a day does not have any ill effect on healthy individuals.  For people who have trouble controlling their LDL levels may want to avoid egg yolks.

Is beef bad for your heart?

No! Beef is a great source of protein and iron.  There are many lean cuts of steaks: filet mignon, sirloin, strip steak, flank steak.  Pick steaks that are deep red with a relatively small
amount of marbling to find lean cuts.

Is chocolate bad for you?

No!  Just make sure you go dark.  Dark chocolate contains flavanols and antioxidants.  Researchers in Switzerland found that eating a small serving of dark chocolate (1.4 ounces) every day for two weeks reduced stress hormones, including cortisol, in highly stressed
people.

Is coffee bad? 

No!  Studies have shown that some compounds in coffee may actually reduce the risk of dementia, diabetes and even liver cancer.  Some people are more sensitive to the caffeine in coffee though, so if you notice that you’re really jittery or that you can’t fall asleep at night you may want to cut down and just have it in the morning.

Are nuts fattening?

No!  Nuts are full of fats—but they’re the good, heart-healthy unsaturated kinds. Nuts contain certain antioxidants that help keep eyes healthy, as well as vitamin E and omega-3 fats.  You do need to watch your portions though.  On average, you get around 160 to 200 calories per ounce so stick to a small handful and enjoy!

Enjoy Your Healthy Food!

You really can’t go wrong when you’re eating all natural foods in proper portion sizes.  If you have questions about a favourite food you think might be unhealthy, leave a comment below and I’ll help clear it up!

Can You Become A Morning Exerciser?

It’s been said that people who exercise first thing in the morning are more likely to stick with their workout routine.  How great do you feel when you’ve finished your morning workout and you have the rest of the day ahead of you?  Working out in the morning definitely has its advantages but what if you’re not a morning person?  Can you become a morning exerciser?  Yes you can!!!

Tips To Become A Morning Exerciser

Leave your bedroom blinds open

Wake up naturally with the rising sun!  Being woken by the light of day is the most natural way to wake up.  Research has shown that a little light may be all we need to get us going.  This of course won’t work in the dead of winter when it doesn’t get light until later in the day.

Turn on a light as soon as your alarm goes off

If you share your bedroom with someone who isn’t going to be exercising with you go to another room and do this.  Once you’re exposed to light you’ll feel much more awake.

Put your alarm somewhere where you have to get up to turn it off

Once you’re out of bed you have a much better chance of staying awake and getting your day started.  Chances are you won’t walk across the room and hit snooze 😉

Put your pre-workout drink on your bedside table

As soon as your alarm goes off drink your pre-workout drink or take your pre-workout capsules.  Within about 10 minutes you won’t even be able to go back to sleep!  Make sure your pre-workout drink is from natural sources free of artificial flavours, colours and other chemicals.

Enroll a buddy

Find a friend who’s as motivated as you and set a standing workout appointment for early in the morning.  When you know someone is waiting for you you’re less likely to flake out.  Just make sure your buddy is highly motivated.

Get support from social media 

If you don’t have a friend that wants to join you in the morning for a workout but you really want the accountability join an online group.  There are all sorts of online accountability groups.  You’ll make new fitness friends, learn new stuff and have a constant source of motivation and inspiration.

Keep your hairdryer in your gym locker

Even if you don’t feel like working out you still have to shower and blow dry your hair.  Once you get yourself to the gym it’s almost guaranteed that you’ll get your workout done.

Get your workout stuff ready the night before 

Have your workout clothes ready in the bathroom so you don’t even have to think about it.  If you’re doing an at home workout get your computer or DVD player set up and have the equipment you need set up too.  All you have to do is press play!

Make a kickass playlist

Make a playlist with all your favourite songs that get you feeling pumped!  Start playing it as soon as you get out of bed.

Pre-pay for classes 

Buy a monthly membership at your favourite gym or studio or buy a 10 pass and book all 10 at once.  Once you’ve committed yourself by paying for and booking your classes you’re more likely to drag yourself out of bed to get there.

Are You Ready To Be A Morning Exerciser?

Use the tips above to help you become a morning exerciser.  You’ll feel great for the rest of the day and at the end of the day you don’t need to worry about trying to fit in a workout.  Set yourself up for success!

Fitness Myths Exposed!

There are a lot of fitness myths out there that are keeping people confused, frustrated and worst of all keeping them from reaching their goals.

I want to help clear up some of the more common ones.

Fitness Myths Exposed

MythLifting heavy weights makes you bulky.

Truth:  Muscle is denser than fat so it takes up less room.  This is why two people who weigh the same can look much different.  The person with more muscle will look smaller than the person who’s carrying the same weight in the form of excess body fat.  .

The only way you’d bulk up just by lifting heavier weights is by eating more calories than you are burning off or eating an unhealthy diet that supports fat gains.

There are supplements that will make you bulk up but for the most part they are illegal and very detrimental to your health.

To bulk up naturally you’d have to work VERY hard on an exercise program and diet that supports major gains.  Some people do an amazing job of this.  If you’re the average person going to the gym a few times a week don’t skip the heavier weights because you think they’ll make you bulky.

Myth:  I exercise every day, so I can eat whatever I want.
Truth:  I WISH!!!!!  You can’t out-exercise a bad diet, but you CAN out-eat your workouts.  To be successful at reaching your goals you need to look at both your nutrition and your exercise.  You need your nutrition to support your hard work – without proper nutrition you won’t recover properly, you won’t have the energy you need and you won’t have a healthy body.

Myth:  It’s harder for women to lose weight than for men.

Truth:  There is some truth to this one.  Biologically, men are built with more lean muscle
mass than women are.  This means that his metabolism is working at a 5 to 10%
higher rate than hers.

So while men do tend to see results quicker, women can achieve the results they want by putting in the work.  We can’t get frustrated when we see our guy friends losing weight more quickly and seemingly more easily.  Stay focused and on track and get the results you want even if it does take slightly longer.

Myth:  All calories are equal, so it doesn’t matter what I eat.

Truth:  Our bodies are designed to use real food.  When you eat real, natural food your body knows how to break it down into usable energy.  When you put fake food in your body it doesn’t recognize it and doesn’t know what to do with it, so it gets stored as toxic fat.

Myth:  Eating fat will make me fat.

Truth:  Remember the 80’s when the whole ‘fat free’ frenzy started?  It was also during the 80’s that ‘obesity’ became a nationwide problem.

There are healthy fats and unhealthy fats.  Our bodies need healthy fats in order to function properly.  Healthy fats actually help us to burn excess stored body fat!! Stay away from trans fats – look for ‘hydrogenated’ on the label.  Make sure you get your healthy fats from foods such as olives, olive oil, nuts, nut butters and avocados.

Myth:  Eating at night will make me gain weight.

Truth:  Cutting out nighttime snacking is a popular weight loss strategy because it feels logical.  It makes sense to eat less when you’re less active.

But really, what affects your weight is the total calories consumed.  The problem is that many people eat at night out of boredom or other emotions instead of hunger, and they wind up consuming more
calories than they need for the day.  It doesn’t matter when you eat!  If you’re consuming extra calories at any time it will result in weight gain.

Myth:  Drinking ice-cold water will help me drop pounds because
it raises my metabolism.

Truth:  Drinking ice cold water does raise your metabolism but only by about 50 calories/day which is pretty insignificant.

Myth:  Weight gain and belly fat are unavoidable after 40.

Truth:  There is a bit of truth to this but don’t let that discourage you.  Yes you may experience a slowing metabolism as you age, but this doesn’t mean it’s impossible to keep belly fat off.  Being more diligent with your diet and getting proper rest and fitting in your workouts will help you to reach your goals.  It can be frustrating to not be able to do the things you once did (or didn’t do) and stay lean but if you really want to be lean than you’ll be open to changing a few habits.  Clean diet the majority of the time is a must and if you’re not lifting heavy weights as part of your program you need to start.  You can talk to a qualified trainer and/or nutritionist to get the help you need.  DO NOT USE AGE AS AN EXCUSE!

Did That Help?

Did that motivate you to stay on or get on and stay on a healthy path?  Fitness is not just about looks – it’s about being able to stay active into your later years and have a high quality of life for as long as possible.