Change your habits for the season

20 April 2017 by
First published: 8 November 2016

Now winter is on the horizon, here’s how to change your habits for the season – so you can set yourself in good stead for the onslaught of coughs, colds and germs that always pop up at this time of year. London-based holistic nutritional therapist Elizabeth Montgomery shares these handy tips…

Adapt your sleeping patterns

It’s important to stay in tune with nature’s rhythm, and with the nights getting darker and colder, it’s vital that we stay warm and conserve our energy. By altering our bed times so that we rise a little later and go to bed a little earlier, we can feel much better. Meditation or gentle yoga will help us ease into the different sleeping patterns and help quieten the mind.

Learn to love fermented foods

Fermented foods are the secret to a healthy gut, which is crucial for a healthy immune system. Adding probiotics into our diet will add good bacteria and boost our body’s immunity. Sauerkraut and pickles are two powerhouses you can easily incorporate into your regime. Coconut-based yoghurt, kefir, miso, kimchi and tempeh are also among the list of yummy fermented foods that will help keep us flu-free this winter.

Nurture your kidneys

It’s hard to get out of bed in the mornings this time of year, and even harder to get into our diet and exercise routines. Therefore, anything we can do to boost our body’s energy system is a must. The kidneys are the energy centre of the body and are nourished by black foods, so add kidney beans, beetroot, black beans, black sesame and chia seeds to your diet for a boost.

Spice it up

To detoxify and protect your body, give your organs a boost by adding spices to your food or drink. Cinnamon supports the kidneys and the stability of our blood sugar, garlic acts as a natural antibiotic and antibacterial agent in the bloodstream, turmeric is a natural antioxidant and antiseptic, plus it aids liver detoxification, and horseradish, which can be a strong decongestant and is also good for digestion of fatty foods.

Enrich your drinks

We all know that it’s super important to stay hydrated no matter what time of year it is. Water is crucial for our regular bodily functions and helps the kidneys flush out toxins. So how can we mix it up in winter to ensure we are getting everything our body needs? The answer is to experiment. By including grated ginger and lemon before meals we are helping to aid digestion, and cloves are also great when added to teas to help support the kidneys and boost circulation