As the weather gets a little cooler and kids are back to school, we know that cold and flu season is right around the corner. Naturopathic Medicine has tons of treatment options to help prevent you and your family from getting sick. Here are just a few ways that I help my patients stay healthy through the colder months:
1- Vitamin D
This time of year sunny days can be fewer and farther between and many people may experience sub-optimal Vitamin D levels. This vitamin is important in maintaining a healthy mood and immune system and Naturopathic Doctors are able to test vitamin D levels to assess whether supplementation is right for you!
2- Moderate exercise
Engaging in moderate amounts of exercise at an intermediate intensity is shown to have a protective effect against the common cold and flu. This means about 30 minutes 4-5 times a week.
3- Contrast hydrotherapy showers
How it works: Allow the shower to run hot (not scalding but comfortably heated!) and stand under it for about 1-3 minutes. Then turn the water to cool/cold for about 30seconds. Repeat this 3 times and always end the shower on cold. This allows your blood vessels to dilate and restrict respectively, increasing blood flow and improving the function of your immune system.
4- Add Garlic to your food
Garlic has active ingredients that help fight against viruses and bacteria that cause you to get sick. Add at least 1 clove of raw crushed garlic to your meal a few times a week to get these added benefits.
5- Warming smoothies
Smoothies are a great way to get a ton of raw veggies and fresh fruit into your diet and they don't always have to be cold! Skip the frozen fruit and try adding a warm spicy flavor of ginger, turmeric or cinnamon to your room temperature smoothie as they contain immune boosting properties! Check out my blog for my favourite smoothie recipes.
*Not all treatments are appropriate for every patient so please see a Naturopathic Doctor to make sure that they are safe and effective for you! Feel free to call me at (604) 733-2632 to book a consultation to determine if Naturopathic Medicine is right for you.
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Dr. Kyla Buten is a
Doctor at BodaHealth
in Vancouver, BC.