Thursday, November 17, 2011

What to Eat Now - Be Winter-Ready Before the Snow Flies!

Winter is in the air. Snow will be on us soon, with ice and freezing temperatures as well. Cold temperatures can be invigorating but they can also be stressful, and dangerous. Stoke up your immune system now to be strong and ready to deal with all of winter’s woes when they hit with full force.

Eat wild salmon for the Omega 3 fats that increase the activity of white blood cells. It’s not that exotic; it’s available in the freezer section at Target and most grocers. If you’re not big on salmon, fish oil capsules or a couple of teaspoons of flax oil will give a similar immunity boost. And there’s always good old cod liver oil. It tastes awful but works great.        

Add some green power to your menu. Drink green tea every day, up to 4 cups for the best immunity-boost. The phytonutrients and antioxidant properties of green tea help lower cholesterol, protect the heart, lower blood pressure, help with weight loss and may even fight cancer. For turbo-charged immunity boosting, drink matcha, a concentrated form of green tea with even more green power than regular green teas. Juice fresh wheatgrass and add shots to your smoothies, green teas and fruit juice drinks. Try growing your own wheatgrass this winter for a really fresh, on-hand supply. Seeds are available from many sources such as Handy Pantry.

Eat fresh fruits, including blueberries, papayas, oranges, melons, mangos, guavas and pink grapefruit, and green and yellow veggies like carrots, sweet potatoes, squash, spinach and broccoli. Get your vitamin C, antioxidants to boost and support the immune system, and delicious flavor from fruits and vegetables. Eat to strengthen and support your body’s immunity and fend off colds, influenzas, sinus infections and other cold-season maladies. No time to prepare these kinds of foods? Go shopping, and dump them into the sink when you bring in your groceries. Wash them, cut them up, and put the prepped foods into food storage containers in the refrigerator for easy access. No extra money in your grocery budget for fresh fruits and vegetables? Audit your kitchen and your eating habits and don’t buy processed food on your next grocery trip. Use that money to buy fresh foods instead.

Try This Super Immune Boosting Pre-Winter Smoothie

3 large chunks of fresh pineapple
3 large chunks of fresh mango
1 banana
3 large leaves of fresh curly spinach
1 large fresh broccoli floret
1 large fresh carrot
5 ice cubes

Crush the ice cubes on the ice crush setting of your blender and remove. Add fruits and veggies and blend on high speed until thoroughly liquefied and creamy. Add crushed ice to blended fruit in blender and blend for a few seconds until thoroughly mixed. Pour into juice glasses for a morning alternative to orange juice, an afternoon boost, or a pre-workout energy drink. Customize your smoothies by adding other immune-boosters such as crushed flax seed, Greek yogurt or a dash of fresh grated ginger.

To use it as a daily super drink taken with your vitamins and supplements, it requires adding a few things to your weekly grocery list at a cost of $12 to $18: 1 fresh pineapple, 2 fresh mangoes, 7 bananas, 1 large bunch of fresh broccoli, a bag of curly spinach and a bag of fresh carrots.

Add fresh immune supporting foods to your menu now. You’ll be happy you did when the temperatures have dropped and the snow is knee-deep and everyone around you is coughing and blowing their noses.

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