Category Archives: Immune Sytem

Why Improving Sleep Quality Supports Immune Health

sleep-benefits-immune-system

Sleep and good health go together. You don’t feel well when you go without sleep. Even getting a few hours won’t be enough. Best case scenario, you wake up feeling groggy, irritable, and slow.

Unfortunately, that sensation is more than a feeling, and it could have a terrible effect on your immune system. As a result of the impact on immune system health, you may open yourself to chronic health problems, disease, and early aging. Let’s take a closer look at how sleep affects the immune system and beyond.

Relationship Between Sleep and Immune Health

Without getting too complicated, the immune system is composed of many different kinds of cells. Some of these cells may be harmful, which the immune system works to identify and kill. This is important as it relates to many facets of immunity. But to drill down into things further, the two most exciting parts of the immune system are integrin and “killer” T cells.

T-cells identify and kill harmful cells and invaders in the body, as mentioned. There are certain levels at which T cells are numerous and active. For example, studies have found that T cells are most numerous after a good night of sleep.

Of course, T-cells don’t act alone. One of their most important allies is integrin. Integrin makes T cells much more able to bind to the cells that they deem to be threats. This action of integrin has been described as “stickiness.” Without being sticky, T Cells can’t do their job. As you might have guessed if you’ve been reading this far, integrin is also most plentiful within the body after a good night of sleep.

What is Good Sleep?

Good sleep means deep sleep. This is the sleep that is undisturbed and most peaceful for the brain. It’s here that certain facets of the immune system spring into action. Other aspects of the immune system are most active during waking hours, but without a good night’s sleep, even the most productive waking immune activity can’t be at its best.

So how much sleep is enough? And how do we promote good sleep if it’s not something you’re accustomed to getting? Most adults need 8 hours of sleep, while teenagers may need 10 hours or more. You should generally go to bed early enough to allow for at least 9 hours of uninterrupted slumber. If you don’t need that much sleep, your body will likely wake up in the morning on its own. This will provide the body the opportunity it needs to get as much sleep as it requires.

How to Get More Sleep

If getting to sleep is a problem for you, you can make plenty of changes to help. Start by going to bed tired. The best way to do this is to get up sufficiently early and exercise to have burned most of your energy by the end of the day. Also, avoid the use of computer screens or the consumption of caffeine.

If you still need a little bit of help to promote healthy sleep daily, some supplements may help.

These products contain ingredients that are naturally sourced or natural substances made within your own body to promote sleep and relaxation.

  • Melatonin 20 mg from Bio-Tech Pharmacal is a supplement that contains the naturally occurring hormone, melatonin. Melatonin is created in the pineal gland and signals to the brain when it is time to sleep. However, due to exposure to blue light or other activities, melatonin production may decline, and sleep is difficult to come by.
  • TravaGen from NeuroScience contains a blend of ingredients important for mood and stress. This formula includes L-tryptophan to provide a gentler conversion to serotonin compared to 5-HTP. Use this formula in combination with healthy sleep habits to find the sleep you need!
  • Theanine (SA508) from Thorne Research is a formula specifically meant to help modulate critical neurotransmitters involved in mood, focus, and memory. This supplement contains L-theanine that research suggests may promote relaxation, mental focus, and acuity.

Hopefully, these natural supplements work to help regulate your sleep, and by extension, provides your immune system with the support it needs to function at its best.

Winter Kids’ Health Essentials

winter kids’ health essentials

Use these simple winter kids’ health essentials to protect you and your family.

Now, more than ever, it’s important for us to be vigilant about our health and the health of our families. So today, let’s talk about some of the winter kids’ health essentials that can help keep our kids’ immune systems strong, and ready to take on whatever comes their way.

Winter Health Challenges

It’s not just COVID-19 that we have to be weary of during the winter months. There are many other winter health challenges that we face when the weather turns colder. Here is a list of the most common concerns that we often encounter, and next we’ll discuss how to face them head on with some tried-and-true winter kids’ health essentials.

  • The Common Cold
  • The Flu
  • NoroVirus (Stomach Flu)
  • Bronchitis
  • COVID-19
  • Pneumonia

Preventing Illness in Winter

Over the past year we’ve all gotten better at taking health precautions, and those same efforts should be continued to help keep other winter health concerns at bay. In this list, we’re specifically referring to winter kids’ health essentials, but really, these tips can apply to all of us to ensure a healthy winter season.

Wash Your Hands

It seems simple, but washing your hands often can be the number one defense against contracting a winter illness. Be especially vigilant about hand washing when coming in contact with public surfaces, shaking hands, or using the restroom. If soap and water aren’t available, carry hand sanitizer to kill the germs until you can get to a sink. Not only are you protecting yourself, but you’ll be stopping the spread of germs to others.

Boost Your Immunity

You may not realize it, but you do have control over your immune system. In fact it’s pretty easy to give your immune system a major boost to help ward off disease and keep us healthy all winter long. Try some of these winter kids’ health essentials today.

  • Eat Fruits and Veggies Daily, Especially Citrus
  • Get Plenty of Exercise (outdoors if possible)
  • Take Vitamin D3 Supplements (kids will love these gummies)
  • Follow Sleep Guidelines for Children

 Stay Home if Sick

If you or your child does come down with an illness, it’s important to stay home. Not only will rest and good nutrition at home help you recover, it will help prevent the spread of illness to others. Likewise, if someone close to you becomes ill, keep your distance to avoid contracting the illness yourself.

Protect Your GI Tract

A healthy stomach, colon, and GI tract can go a long way towards keeping your child healthy during the winter months. A daily probiotic like these probiotic gummies from Nordic Naturals are a great way to give your child powerful protection against common health concerns.

Sanitize Everything

Keeping heavily touched surfaces and items cleaned and sanitized will go a long way in the fight against winter illness. Here are some common areas that need to be cleaned regularly.

  • Door Knobs and Handles
  • Counters and Bathrooms
  • Bed Sheets and Nighttime Friends (Stuffed Animals, Lovies)
  • School Clothes and Backpacks
  • Outdoor Shoes (Leave Them Outside and Clean Often)

You don’t have to be a victim of wintertime illnesses, use these simple winter kids’ health essentials to protect you and your family. Have a safe and healthy new year!

Cold Organic Pressed Juice Recipes

cold-organic-juice-recipes

If you love cold organic pressed juice, you know one thing for sure: buying it from the store can be expensive. But your budget doesn’t have to take a massive hit every time you want a cold organic pressed juice. That’s because with the right cold organic pressed juice recipes, you can make your very own organic pressed juice at home.

To get started, there are just two things you need:

  1. A juicer.
  2. The organic fruits and veggies of your choice.

That’s it! There are a lot of choices for juicers available for a variety of price ranges (from about $25 to over $400). While each one will have its particular perks or selling point, generally, you’ll be deciding between a centrifugal juice (which juices fast) or a masticating juicer (which juices slow).

Once you’ve decided upon your juicer, get started with these simple and delicious cold organic pressed juice recipes.

Cold Organic Pressed Juice Recipes

Green Goddess Cold Pressed Juice Blend

This simple four-ingredient pressed juice recipe is an easy and delicious entry point to adding more green juice to your diet. To make this juice, you’ll need:

  • 3 stalks of organic celery.
  • ½ large organic cucumber, quartered.
  • 1 medium organic green apple, cut into eighths.
  • 1 medium organic pear, cut into eighths.

Both celery and cucumber make great cold-pressed organic juice ingredients since they’re packed with water. Juice, stir, and enjoy!

Immune Booster Cold Pressed Juice Blend

If the colder weather finds you under the weather, you’re probably looking for all of the natural immunity boosts you can find. One simple and delicious one is this immune booster cold-pressed juice recipe. All you’ll need is:

  • 2 organic oranges, quartered (with or without the peel – without the peel makes it less bitter).
  • ¼ organic lemon, peeled.
  • 1 medium organic apple, cut into eighths.
  • ½ inch fresh organic ginger.

The result is a sunny, yellow juice that harnesses the germ-fighting powers of lemons, oranges, apples, and ginger.

Kale Juice With a Kick

If you like your green juices more spicy than sweet, then this cold-pressed juice recipe is the one for you. Here are the ingredients you’ll need:

  • 1 small organic lemon (peeled).
  • 1 medium bunch of organic kale, stemmed.
  • 3 organic Persian cucumbers.
  • One 1-inch piece of fresh organic ginger.
  • ¾ cup organic cilantro leaves.
  • ¼ inch piece of organic jalapeno (optional, and feel free to add either more or less to your spiciness preference).
  • Kosher salt (optional, to sprinkle over final drink blend).
  • Ice, to serve.

And to really amp up your juice game (or to combine with the drink of your choice), try adding one of these high-nutrition powder mixes to your next cold organic pressed juice recipe: Power Greens Chocolate (NuMedica), Pro Reds (Nutritional Frontiers), and BroccoMax (Jarrow Formulas).

Power Greens Chocolate – NuMedica

Power Greens Chocolate from NuMedica is a high ORAC value greens formula that is easy mixing, great-tasting, and an energizing phytonutrient powder mix loaded with certified organic, whole food plant extracts. It also provides a super blend of completely natural vitamins, ionic trace minerals, enzymes, antioxidants, phytonutrients, and symbiotic intestinal flora that may help in delivering maximum energy, metabolism, fat-burning, digestion, detoxification, immunity, repair, recovery, revitalization, and longevity. Its proprietary antioxidant blend provides almost 50 different superfoods, yet still contains absolutely zero:

  • Stimulants
  • Caffeine
  • Gluten
  • Wheat
  • Dairy
  • Preservatives
  • MSG

Pro Reds – Nutritional Frontiers

Pro Reds from Nutritional Frontiers is a delicious drink mix supplement jam-packed with antioxidants that deliver at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables, all in a tasty berry blend. With an ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity) of 5000, Pro Reds is designed to boost energy and to support the body’s antioxidant defense systems.

Brocco Max – Jarrow Formulas

The makers of Brocco Max from Jarrow Formulas know that cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli have been associated with antioxidant and cellular protection. That’s why Brocco Max contains a standardized concentration of sulforaphane glucosinolate extracted (without solvents) from broccoli seeds. 20x more concentrated than broccoli, Brocco Max supports healthy cell replication and can be taken before or after a meal. We recommend trying it with one of your new cold organic pressed juice recipes.

What is your favorite cold organic pressed juice recipes?