Winter Wellness

November in Canada, 30 uneventful days squished between Thanksgiving and Christmas, can often be a tough month to navigate. Bright autumn colours have faded or gone, temperatures signal the winter season ahead, the temptation to hibernate sets in and sickness seems to be on the rise. Mustachioed men notwithstanding, November seems to have been primarily tagged as the poster child for the kickoff of Cold & Flu season.


Truth be told, the whole idea that sickness has a “season” seems like a perfect ploy to hitch a marketing wagon to. The reality is, your chance of getting ill has less to do with the month of the year and a whole lot to do with the health of your immune system. And immunity has many influencers. Nutrition, quality of sleep, and the presence of stress, are just some of the key factors that play a vital role in immune function. In a perfect world, you would be consuming a whole foods diet rich in veggies and fruit and the nutrients you need to function at your optimal level of health every day. You would be going to bed at a regular time that gives you eight hours of restful sleep. You would be getting exercise daily, fresh air, and engaging in activities that help relieve stress. These are the healthy habits that can boost immune function, making us less susceptible to illness when nasty germs come around.


What happens when even with the best of intentions, we slip up on the healthy eating or have a week of commitments that keep us up past our bedtime or feeling extra stressed? This is when it’s great to have some reinforcements. I like to think of it as a back-up team of immune-boosting superheroes. Julie Tadeson, creator and owner of Jule’s Baskets, is making it really easy for you to stock your pantry {or your loved ones} with the very best in immune-supporting products. Health-conscious and hand-selected, this Immune Supporting Collection includes some of my favourite immune helpers…


Jax Coco Coconut Water - you might not know it, but not all coconut water is created equal. Many brands on the market today contain additives and/or preservatives. Jax Coco Coconut Water is 100% pure, no added anything, just as nature intended. It’s naturally isotonic, meaning it contains the same level of electrolyte balance as we have in our blood, making it a perfect choice for hydration and energy.


Holy Crap Breakfast Cereal - gluten-free, rich in Omega 3 and Omega 6 fats, and high in protein and fiber, this cereal supports healthy brain function so you can stay on top of that to do list, provides sustained and balanced energy and is healing and gentle for your digestive tract.


Four Sigma Foods - Instant Chaga Herbal Mushroom Tea Sachets - Chaga is known as the “King” of mushrooms and it’s no wonder with its tremendous therapeutic properties. With an antioxidant benefit 10x greater than other vegetables and fruits, high levels of polysaccharides to support the body’s own immune system, and triterpenes to support the body in fighting viruses and bacterias, this tea is a must-have in any immune boosting toolkit. This Instant Chaga is so easy to enjoy - it tastes lightly sweetened and can be consumed as tea, a cold beverage or even added to smoothies in its powdered form.


Wedderspoon Raw Manuka Honey & Organic Manuka Honey Lozenges - the natural compounds in Manuka honey are what stimulate the body’s production of immune-boosting cells and set this variety apart from other honeys for its antibacterial properties. In fact, in some studies, Manuka honey was found to be more effective than antibiotics at killing the bacteria that cause chronic sinus infections.


Living Libations Immune Illume Essential Oil - this essential oil is one no immunity toolkit should be without. Fortified with antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral agents, just a few drops is all you’ll need for strengthened immunity. The combination of hyssop, thymes, ravensara, rosemary, eucalyptus, and oregano works wonders on the respiratory system - like liquid gold during cold season when you might feel more congested!  Inhale, add to the bath, massage, diffuse, or ingest drops of this wonder oil for good health through the winter months.


Orange Naturals Oil of Oregano - Oil of Oregano, is hands down one of my go-to products when I feel illness rearing its ugly head. It’s a potent antioxidant with antimicrobial properties to fight off infections, especially colds and flus. It’s the naturally occurring carvacrol that lends to its antioxidant/antimicrobial benefits. I love the Orange Naturals brand because it contains one of the highest concentrations of carvacrol at 75 - 80%, it’s suspended in coconut and palm oils (keeping the molecular structure of the oil intact and minimizing chances of rancidity), and it has an added hint of natural orange flavour.


Cleanwell Natural Hand Sanitizer - when circumstances prevent you from getting to the sink for a proper hand wash, most of us turn to hand sanitizers. Unfortunately, conventional brands can be harmful - stinging cuts, smelling nasty and leaving your hands looking and feeling like the Sahara desert.  That’s why I love this version from Cleanwell. You won’t find any harsh chemicals or alcohol here. Clean Well uses a patented form of thyme oil for all-natural antibacterial goodness. That’s right, thyme isn’t just a tasty herb used in cooking. For thousands of years, it’s been used in Roman, Greek and Ayurvedic medicine as an antiseptic and to ward off sickness. So now you can clean without the mean!


As you can see, the Immune Boosting basket from Jule’s Baskets packs a powerful immune strengthening punch and contains everything you need to supplement those healthy habits for a season that’s clear of Colds & Flus.

 

Keep you and your loved ones healthy with this Winter Wellness Basket 

About the author

Carolyn White is a graduate from the Academy of Culinary Nutrition, a Certified Personal Trainer, and the Owner of Take Care Wellness and Firm Believers Fitness Bootcamps for women. She is passionate about her family, being a healthy role model for her daughters, living a faith-filled life, and helping others discover their best versions of themselves. For more information about the services Carolyn provides at Take Care Wellness or Firm Believers Fitness, contact her by email.