BOOST YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM
Maybe you instinctively know that there are some foods that are better for you than others. But did you know that increasing the consumption of certain foods could boost your immune system, reduce stress, combat disease, and lengthen your life whether or not you may ever have to survive a crisis?
They are the group of foods collectively known as "superfoods." Some superfoods will come as no surprise. Remember how your mom always told you to eat your broccoli? Seems she knew what clinical studies have now proven. Broccoli is one of the most potent superfoods there is. Others may surprise you such as beans and certain nuts.
What makes them so super? Superfoods may not dress up in tights and capes, but many of them are rather colorful and easy to spot. That's because one of the things that all superfoods have in common are phytochemicals. Phytochemicals are the substances that give plants their color, their nutrition, and their disease resistance. Also it goes without saying that all superfoods are "all natural". You will not find anything processed or refined in a superfood. The other attributes that all superfoods have in common are antioxidants, high nutrition, and fiber. It's a triple punch that adds up to peak performance.
As a group, all of the superfoods contain key nutrients that have been found in study after study to maximize health. Yet these are the same nutrients that are lacking in the diets of most Americans. The superfoods are rich in Vitamins A, B, and C. Critical minerals such as folate, magnesium, and potassium are found in the superfoods, as are the "good fats" such as omega 3's and gamma-linolenic acid.
Examples of superfoods include:
- Green Tea - use hot water, but not boiling to preserve benefits
- Tart Cherries
- Goji Berries
- Wheat Germ
- Dark Chocolate - not milk chocolate - it must be dark chocolate to have any health benefits, with at least 80% cacao
Staying healthy and fit and increasing your chances of surviving a disaster is an ongoing process. A fitness and diet program high in anti-oxidants will naturally boost your immune system and strengthen your resistance to flu and all pathogens. Learning how to cook healthy food, and how to cook food from scratch, are not only great life skills - they are survival skills.
Increase the amount of raw fruits and vegetables you eat on a daily basis, while trying to become less reliant on processed foods and modern preparation. Learn how to bake bread instead of buying it from the market. It's not that hard, it's healthier, and it may save your life in the field one day!
Besides getting in "Survival Shape" another part of improving your physical preparedness to face a disaster is to gain some additional skills that could come in handy. If you do not know how to swim, learn. Take a course in Yoga, Tai Chi, or other stress reduction techniques. These can help you cope before, during and after a disaster. Get trained in basic self-defense. The more you can learn, and the more you can challenge yourself physically - the better you will be able to react in an emergency.
It is also a very good idea to learn CPR and basic first aid. Your local Red Cross Chapter (RedCross.org) gives many such courses. They can help you be better prepared in emergency situations, build confidence, and also are great way to meet like-minded people and increase your network of friends -- which is a good thing to have, in or out of a crisis!
While embarking on lifestyle changes to improve your overall health are generally considered sound steps to take, it is always advisable to consult with your medical practitioner before making any radical changes in your diet or exercise program.