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Boost Your Immune System for Fall

By Sara Jean Barrett, ND

As the manager of Running Wolf Fitness Center I always want the Alley readers to get to know the wonderful people who come and volunteer their time and talent with our clients at Running Wolf. So this month I asked Dr Sara Jean Barrett, N.D to share her wisdom with you all. Dr Barrett is Naturopathic Physician and a regular presenter on health topics at Running Wolf Fitness Center and anyone who attends her sessions always wants to come again!- Connie Norman-Running Wolf Fitness Center Manager

Here is an excerpt from Dr. Sara Barrett’s blog: (used with her permission)

Fall is officially here! To gear up for the cooler weather let’s review some things you can do to make sure your immune system is going strong.

  • Exercise: Once cold weather hits it can be tempting to hibernate on the couch. Make sure to keep up your exercise routine. Even doing a little yoga every morning alters your gene expression and helps keep you healthy!
  • Avoid sugar and refined carbohydrates: With cooler weather often comes carbohydrate cravings. Try to avoid consuming refined sugar and carbohydrates as much as possible. Sugar slows the action of your immune system. Instead when you need some carbohydrate comfort look to winter squash and whole grains which give you necessary nutrients to keep your body strong.
  • Probiotics/fermented foods: One of our best defenses against getting sick is having a thriving flora living in our GI. If you enjoy fermented foods like kombucha, miso, tempeh, sauerkraut etc. eat up! If you aren’t into fermented foods make sure you are taking a probiotic supplement.
  • Medicinal mushrooms: Maitake, shiitake, reishi, cordyceps the list goes on. All of these mushrooms are great at boosting your immune system. You can buy them dried at co-ops and add them to almost any dish. Sometimes I even find them fresh at farmer’s markets.
  • Vitamin D3: Here in MN we must take vitamin D throughout the winter because with such little sunlight exposure we won’t make much on our own. A good source is cod liver oil. If you would rather not relive those childhood memories then pick up a supplement but make sure it contains all the fat soluble vitamins (A, D, E & K).

As always, continue to eat a balanced diet full of produce. Try to eat the rainbow and get as many colors in your diet as you can. If you do find yourself coming down with something you can always schedule a quick appointment so you can get on the mend faster!

Note: Before starting a new diet or supplementation routine make sure to speak with your ND, MD, or DO. This post is for educational purposes only and is not to be taken as medical advice.

Sara Jean Barrett, N.D.
Alternative Solutions for Health
P: 612.598.8627
F: 612-677-3773
www.alternativesolutionsmn.com

Dr Barrett will be presenting at Running Wolf in November on “Food as Medicine.” Watch for the date and time in our November Calendar! For more information call Running Wolf @ (612)872-2388!

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