Stay Healthy as the Weather Changes



This fall runner makes his personal health Priority One!

In Vermont, we are so lucky to have extremely vibrant seasons. Fall turns out to be one of my favorites. I love all the beautiful harvest colors and the specific fragrant smells that it brings. Fall, of course, is really like an appetizer to the longer main course of the Vermont winter, which typically presents challenges to an individual’s health. It is extremely important to modify our preventative health plans to address the lack of fresh produce available and the challenge that weather presents with exercise, not to mention stress.

Nutrition, exercise, sleep and hygiene are key ingredients that together help boost our immune system while the weather changes. Here are a few suggestions for the “cold season.”

Ensure you are taking enough of the active form of Vitamin D (D3) each day. Take at least 1,000 IU of Active D3 daily to maintain a healthy, well-functioning immune system. Taking 1,000 IU keeps your liver and nervous system working well to fight off any toxins or bugs that could get you sick by weakening your immune system.

Stick to your ACESZ. Supplementing with Vitamins, A, C, E, Zinc, and Selenium will keep your immune system strong and highly functioning as we change to cooler weather. These vitamins are high in antioxidants and are anti-inflammatory. Foods and spices high in A include paprika, red pepper, cayenne, chili powder, carrots, and sweet potatoes. Foods rich in Vitamin C include any citrus fruits (lemon, pineapple, limes, apples, oranges, grapefruits); Vitamin E foods include almonds, peanuts, pine nuts, dried basil and oregano. Try to eat as much produce as possible and eat the full “rainbow” of colors to get as many nutrients as possible

Exercise, exercise, and exercise! It’s so easy to not exercise due to inclement weather. Make it fun and make it a priority in the coming season. Get moving, try aerobic activity for 30 minutes at least three to five times weekly. Exercise lowers stress levels that make people vulnerable to bacteria and viruses, and it may increase the circulation of cells needed to fight infection.

Hand washing is vital to our health. Washing hands often helps reduce the transmission of infection. Consider carrying a bottle of alcohol-based hand rub containing at least 60% alcohol for times when soap and water are not available. These gels kill most germs. Keep kitchen and bathroom countertops clean. Disinfect solid surfaces at work and home often (such as door knobs, TV remote etc.).

Get at least eight hours of sleep per night. Because we are stressed in both our lives and our jobs, it is difficult to get enough rest each night. By sleeping at least eight hours per night, we can allow our nervous and immune systems to “recharge” throughout the night, giving us more energy, boosting our immune systems and allowing our nervous system to function more effectively so we can handle stress when it does come our way. Sleep helps the body recharge.

Drink adequate amount of fluids each day. Although most of us can’t live without our coffee fix in the morning, drinking more water each day keeps your organs and tissues hydrated and flushing out any toxins that may enter our bodies, possibly weakening the immune system. Drinking at least one-half of your weight in ounces maintains proper hydration and helps to make you more resistant to sickness.

These are just a few tips to keep you healthy and in shape as the leaves change color. Remember to set aside time in your busy schedule each day for self-care.

It does the body good.