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Yes I hear you, the holiday season does come only once a year and with it delicious and rich food, friends, family and wine.   If you’re feeling a little post-indulgent today, don’t worry, know that you’re not alone, help is on its way.  And it does not require switching from indulgence to asceticism overnight, something our society so loves doing.

Here’s an alternative.  Boost your nutrition plan over the next few weeks by introducing key, nutritional powerhouses a.k.a. super-natural whole foods, so that you can effectively balance your body and mind especially in light of the excess of this season.  It is all about balance.  In fact, isn’t everything? 🙂

I looked to a good friend, a highly qualified and positive, Whole Foods Nutritionist Judy Chambers for her key tips to strengthen our immunity using super-natural foods, so we can ease into the new year feeling rested, rejuvenated and excited to meet January in our optimal power.  No starvation necessary.

Here’s what Judy recommends:

1. Consume Probiotic-rich Fermented Foods

plain probiotic rich yoghurt

The best way to boost immunity is to introduce naturally fermented foods into your diet. The probiotics (beneficial bacteria) found in these foods are far more effective than any supplement.

Examples of Probiotic Power Foods:

  • Unpasteurized sauerkraut
  • Unpasteurized apple cider vinegar
  • Naturally preserved fruits or chutney
  • Live culture plain whole yogurt (Jerseyland or Saugeen brand)
  • Cultured beverages such as coconut kefir or kombucha

2. Pay Attention to Your Vitamin D

Vitamin D influences immunity and is best taken in a supplement form in conjunction with food sources such as organic butter, eggs & wild fish.  Adequate intake of vitamin D has been strongly associated with proper immune function and better outcomes in studies.

Prevention Strategy: – 1 tsp. of filtered/wild fish oil such as Antarctic Krill Oil – 2,000-5,000 IU Vitamin D3 per day during the winter season

3. Eat a Healthy Whole Foods Diet and Avoid Sugar

A bounty of fresh local greens even during the west-coast winter

Super natural immunity begins with the bounty of nature (whole or unprocessed). First choice should always be what’s fresh, local and seasonal. Word to the wise… remember to limit the white stuff as well, 1 tsp. of refined white sugar has been shown to suppress your immune system for up to 5 hours!

Foundational Foods Checklist:

  • Fresh Leafy Greens & Colorful Veggies
  • Local Fruits & Berries
  • Whole Grains (non-gluten)
  • Naturally-raised Protein-rich Foods (plant/animal)
  • Unrefined Fats & Oils
  • Natural Seasonings

4. Get Plenty of Sleep and Reduce Stress

or go surfing with a posse of friends 🙂

A good night’s sleep strengthens your adrenals. Strong adrenals are essential for creating the energy to run your body on each day, managing stress and support balanced immune function.

Keys to Balance:

  • Eat like your ancestors
  • Get outside & move it
  • Connect to community & have fun!

5. Support Your Body’s Natural Detoxification Systems

lemon and water

There are many benefits to cleansing toxins or pathogens naturally. If you feel like your system is rundown or blocked perhaps its time to refresh.

Flu Fighting Foods:

  • Boiled water with lemon slices
  • Green foods (leafy greens & seaweeds)
  • Wild berries (elderberry)
  • Fresh ginger, turmeric & rosemary

Another few suggestions, keep your choices as local and organic as possible and eat seasonally, as a wise farmer once told me, eating from the land is the best way to boost your immunity.

To learn more about Judy and to sign up for her Super Natural Immunity Class on Feb. 3, 2010, visit www.dynamicbynature.com

More resources on Whole Foods Nutrition: