Posts tagged: Immune System

3 Foods to Eat to Prevent the Cold & Flu

Have you ever considered whether there is a relationship between the foods you eat, your immune system, and your ability to fight off seasonal bugs? Are you aware of nature’s miracle workers that help prevent the cold and flu? How about the foods you can eat to help you recover quickly from a cold or flu?

In this 3-minute clinic, we discuss the top 3 foods you can eat to help prevent the cold and flu. We also talk about natural remedies to consider to speed up your recovery time if you come down with the cold or flu.

“Welcome to the three minute clinic on how to prevent the common cold, and common flu. Now let me review with you the single most important thing I need you to know. The single most important thing you need to know is that it is your immune system, immune power, yes immune power is the key—your immune system, your ability to fight infection, your defense mechanism. In other words, it’s like a team. A team has an offense and a defense, your immune system is your defense. And everybody that studies sports and knows how championships are won knows that championships are won through defense. So when you build your defense against illness, when you build your defense against viruses, when you build your defense against germs, that’s how you protect yourself and prevent the flu. And to build your defense, that means building your immune system. So we’re going to talk about today the three foods to eat to prevent the cold and flu. And, again we go back to stress—remember that emotional stress and nutritional stress are typically present when you catch he flu. We call it the over-stressed, under-nurtured syndrome, too much stress, not enough good nutrition. That’s how people get in trouble. But particularly if you know what not to eat—meaning stay away from eggs, and dairy, and sweets and flour, you’re going to do well. Now what do you do to boost your immune system? Obviously exercise, positive, thinking, meditation are key—but nutritionally there are three things I want you to know about what to do to prevent the flu. Number one, you need vitamin-C rich foods. So typically, citrus fruits are the way to go. Fresh-squeezed orange juice, fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice, pineapples, tangerines, mangoes, that’s what we’re looking for. As a matter of fact, a lot of time moms will call me when their kids are sick, I’ll say go to the store, get a bunch of tangerines, get a couple of pink grapefruits—pink instead of white because the pink have more vitamin A—you want to have some pineapples, you want to have some mangoes and you eat to your hearts delight of citrus fruits. That’s number one. Number two, green leafy vegetables. Particularly romaine lettuce—romaine lettuce, again going back to Caesar’s days, romaine, romaine, romaine! So romaine lettuce is very important, and other green leaf vegetables like broccoli and cucumber and celery are very important in the daily diet to help prevent the flu. And the third thing is what we call a “green drink”. We see these things, wheatgrass juice, spirulina, you go to the health food store they have a green drink, they have a green combination of smoothies—that’s what you can take every day. During this winter season I want you to have citrus fruits, I want you to have green leaf vegetables and I want you to have a daily green drink. Now the other thing is, what happens when you get the flu? Well, I want to go into what we call a cleansing diet—which is mostly fruits and vegetables. But there are two or three remedies I want you to know about. The first remedy for treating and overcoming the flu is what we call the red zinger recipe, the Meltzer red zinger recipe. What you do is you get red zinger herbal tea. Sometimes when you go to the store they may not have the red zinger, you might have to get a lemon zinger or acai zinger, or raspberry zinger…but zinger is the key! Because zinger is rich in vitamin A—which is the key, and vitamin C. So you take your red zinger tea—for every cup of tea you take one tea bag, and in that tea you squeeze the juice of half a lemon, you put a tablespoon or two of apple cider vinegar, Bragg’s apple cider vinegar. Now those of you that are congested with a sinus problems of the flu, inhale the apple cider vinegar like a smelling salt. You could probably get three or four inhalations before you feel that it is too strong. But, you take your herbal tea, your red zinger, put some lemon in it, your apple cider vinegar, you put a little bit of a pinch of cayenne and a teaspoon of honey. Now that remedy, taken every three hours or so will help you get through the flu, and help you clean out the flem and the mucus. In addition to that, there are a couple herbal antibiotics you might consider. One is Echinacea with golden seal, and that’s typically more effective against bacteria. And then there’s astragalus, a Chinese herb that comes in tincture form—so you can take 20-30 drops, three to four times a day-that has an anti-viral power. In addition to that, glutathione, 50 milligrams twice a day is anti-viral, and as we talked about earlier, vitamin C. So in summary, yes you are the most important factor in preventing the flu. Your immune system is the most important factor in preventing the flu. And the foods that I want you to eat during the flu season to boast your immune system and to build you up are vitamin C-rich citrus fruits, I want you to eat green leafy vegetables-particularly romaine lettuce and broccoli, and let me advocate that you have a green drink everyday. Make time for wellness, make time to eat the right foods, and make time to prevent the flu.”

How to Prevent the Cold & Flu

Looking to prevent the cold and flu? Have you ever wondered why some individuals come down with the cold or flu that is going around the office whereas others don’t? Or how some folks seem to recover quickly from an upper respiratory infection whereas with others it may linger on for days or weeks? Is it just a matter of washing your hands and trying to avoid contacting germs or are there other forces at work?

Check out our 3-minute clinic on preventing the cold and flu to learn how you can make sure you are prepared to get through the cold and flu season without getting sick.

“Welcome to the three-minute clinic at the Meltzer Wellness Institute, and today we are going to be talking about how to prevent the cold and the flu. You know the cold season is upon us, it’s that time of year, the beginning of November, middle of November, into the wintertime and into the winter season. So you are going to see it all over the place, you are going to see upper respiratory infections, you are going to see colds, you are going to see coughing, you are going to see ear infections, you are going to see tonsillitis, you are going to see bronchitis, so what’s up? Why is it that eight out of ten folks in the Western United States and most of the United States during this winter season will have some symptoms of an upper respiratory infection. Have you ever thought about that? How is it that some folks get bronchitis? How some folks get tonsillitis? How some folks get laryngitis, how some folks get the flu and how some folks don’t or how some folks get it and stay sick for a week or two. So there’s a wide variation here, so let’s go into it. How do you get the flu, how do you prevent the flu, that’s what I want you to know today. What you are going to find out is from this series on how to prevent the cold and flu, is what you need to know to stay well, and how to prevent the flu. So let’s look at it. You know, it’s interesting most folks think they catch the flu, that’s pretty much what goes on. In my clinic I’ll hear people say, ‘oh yea I came down with something when I was at my granddaughter’s birthday party, or I went to the movies and people in the front row were sneezing and coughing, I was at the restaurant the waiter coughed on me, I went to a play and the people in the aisle behind us had a bad cold.’ So the mindset is that people generally catch the flu. Now that’s kind of metaphorically accurate— sure you catch the flu from the point of view that you get exposed to bugs and you get exposed to viruses, there is a germ factor in catching the flu—but what people neglect to realize is that you, the individual is the most important factor in whether or not you catch the flu or not. In other words, the germ theory of disease, which alleges that germs cause disease, set medicine back, in my mind, hundreds of years. Now why is that? Because it’s not the germ, it’s how your body interacts with the germ. You see there’s an agent, a germ, and a host, the body. So the relationship between the germ and the host, in other words, the relationship between the virus and the bacteria and your immune system, will determine whether you get the flu or not. So for example, if your immune system is strong and you’re vital and you’re potent and your energy is good and your metabolism is balanced and your body chemistry is strong and balanced, when you get exposed to common viruses and bugs you don’t get the flu. But what happens when your immune system is thinned out? What happens if your self-repair mechanism is not at the highest level? Of course then when you get exposed to viruses and bugs you get the flu. So, it’s kind of like seeing policeman at the scene of the crime. You see, oh yea policeman at the scene of the crime-did they cause the crime? Well no, but they’re at the scene of the crime. Germs are present but the key thing is your immune system. So it’s interesting even if you go back in history back into the 18 and 1900’s when there were plagues that devastated Europe, not everybody got the plague. You have to understand that, not everybody gets sick. So the difference between those who stay well and those who get sick is the immune system. That’s what we’re talking about, so I want you to understand something very simply. The best way, and the most effective way to prevent the cold and prevent the flu is by establishing and developing immune power. The ability of your body to be strong, the ability of your body to defend itself against agents like viruses and bacteria. That’s the key. Now, let’s review. How do you catch the flu, how do you get the flu? Is it an accident, is it something that just happens, do you catch it? No. You get exposed to viruses and bacteria, and when your immune system is thinned out that’s how you catch a cold and you tilt, basically. So tune in and stay tuned in we’re going to have a series of little talks here, three minute clinics, of what you can do, what you need to know, what to eat, what not to eat, what measures you take, besides washing your hands, washing your hands is not enough to prevent the cold an flu. That’s a standard form of therapy, but it is not enough to prevent cold and flu. So stay tuned in to the three minute clinics, the Meltzer Wellness Institute, Make Time for Wellness and make time to prevent the cold and flu.”

Pineapple: Personality Plus

Making a point to eat fresh, whole, living fruit on a daily basis is one of the cornerstones to creating nutritional balance and staying strong, energized, and balanced–mentally, physically, and immunologically.  In the last couple weeks we talked about the nutritional, therapeutic, and emotional value of The King of Citrus & The Queen of Citrus.  This week we’re going to focus on the pineapple, and how it can play an important role in revitalizing your mind, healing the body, and boosting your mood.  Let’s take a closer look.

Notable Personality Factors:

Native to South America and a staple of Hawaiian and other South Pacific cuisines, the pineapple has a playful effect on moods. It’s a vibrant, jubilant fruit, capable of creating upbeat, cheerful food swings. Like a tropical vacation, pineapples have a way of rejuvenating the mind and body.

Therapeutic and Healing Powers:***

While the pineapple isn’t technically a citrus fruit, I like to consider it a close relative.  Why is that? When you take a look at the nutritional profile and therapeutic value–not to mention the fact that it combines well with other citrus fruits–there are all kinds of similarities.

For example, like all citrus fruits, pineapples act as a powerful cleanser of the bloodstream.  They are rich in minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants that fight off accelerated aging and degenerative illness such as cancer, and are also loaded with phytonutrients that strengthen the immune system and increase your resistance to disease.  In addition, pineapples are very effective in loosening up excess mucus that put you at increased risk for the cold, the flu, and upper respiratory infections–just like oranges, grapefruits, and other citrus fruits!

In addition to all of these health benefits, the pineapple has a secret weapon that distinguishes it amongst the other “citrus fruits” in the plant kingdom.  More specifically, the pineapple is uniquely endowed with a miracle phytonutrient called bromelain.  Bromelain is a protein-digesting enzyme complex of the fruit, which resembles the enzymes in the sap of fig and papaya trees. I mention this because in the same way sap heals a tree, so, too, does bromelain heal the body!

In addition to treating indigestion and aiding in the breakdown of protein, bromelain has the notable ability to mend sports injuries, ease arthritic pain, and reduce inflammation in the body. In fact, bromelain is prescribed by plastic and general surgeons, post-operatively, to reduce swelling of tissues and to prevent edema. It’s used to inhibit blood platelet aggregation and accelerate wound healing.

I’ve also found that pineapple encourages an increase in hemoglobin and can be a valuable fruit for anyone suffering from anemia.

Nutrient Value:

While bromelain may be what sets the pineapple apart from other citrus fruits, it’s important to note that pineapples also contain significant amounts of vitamins C and B1.  Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that protects your body from damaging free-radicals and vitamin B1 is an important nutrient that supports cellular metabolism and energy production. Pineapples are also a great source of manganese, which has antioxidant properties and also plays an important role in supporting a healthy metabolism

Selection and Care:

Fragrance is the key to determining freshness: A sweet aroma indicates that the fruit is mature. Look for bright green tops, securely attached crowns, and choose the deepest yellow-orange pineapples. Try to pull out one of the spines–if the pineapple is ripe, it will come out easily. The fruit should feel dry and heavy for its size, and should be free of dark, decayed spots.

Optimal Use and Combining:

Like all fruits, it’s best to consume pineapples and pineapple juice fresh and raw.  Serve pineapple fresh with other citrus fruits such as oranges and grapefruits. In addition, pineapple with strawberry and banana, pineapple with pink grapefruit and banana, or pineapple with papaya and banana all make excellent fruit salads. Keep in mind, however, that pineapple does not combine well with melons or grapes.  Finally, give granola a jolt with pineapple chunks.

***This article is not intended to treat or diagnose any type of health condition or disease. Any nutritional considerations for any health complication should be discussed with your physician or healthcare provider.

Orange: The King of Citrus

Sometimes it’s easy to overlook the role that nutrition plays in our day-to-day lives.  It impacts the way we feel, the way we look, our energy, and our mood–and that’s just the begining!  Our nutrition can help prevent disease, initiate a healing process, combat stress, and more!

Do you know what makes the mighty orange a particularly important part of a smart nutritional program?  Let’s take a closer look.

Notable Personality Factors:

Oranges have long been the icon of the citrus fruits. For this reason, I like to think of the orange as the “King of Citrus.”  Oranges promote alertness and confidence, increase energy levels, invigorate, and are good for circulation. That’s why they are so great to start off a day with.  They brighten spirits, boost mental attitude, and bring hope. Fresh squeezed orange juice in the morning is truly an eye-opener.

Therapeutic and Healing Powers:***

The flavonoids and bioflavonoids in oranges, combined with their high vitamin C content, make the fruit a strong ally of the immune system. These phytonutrients and antioxidants play an important role in fighting off degenerative disease, slowing the aging process, and maintaining the immune system’s infinite potential to self-govern, self-rejuvenate, and self-repair.

Oranges’ assortment of phytonutrients and enzymes are also of particular benefit to the prevention of upper respiratory infections. What I’ve learned over the years is that oranges have a detergent action, loosening mucus in the upper respiratory passages (the exact opposite effect of mucus-forming milk and dairy). When your upper respiratory system is backed up with mucus, it can create an environment for bacteria and viruses to spread.  That’s why oranges are an essential nutritional tool in the treatment and prevention of bronchitis, sinusitis, tonsillitis, and sore throat. I regularly prescribe this citrus to combat common bacterial infections as well as viral infections such as the cold and flu. A glass of fresh squeezed o.j. goes a long way in helping to treat and prevent such nasty bugs.

It’s also important to point out that oranges are good for the arteries. They keep cholesterol low, prevent plaque buildup in the blood vessels, and are beneficial to blood pressure.

Nutrient Value:

As mentioned above, the vitamin C, bioflavonoid, and phytonutrient content of this fruit make it a standout. The orange is also endowed with respectable levels of folic acid, vitamin B1, and carotenoids. Finally, its important to note that its pectin content has cholesterol-lowering value.

Selection and Care:

The orange originated in southern China and Southeast Asia, and has become the leading fruit crop in the United States. I prefer thin-skinned California Valencia oranges for juicing, because they’re sweeter and less sharp than other varieties. For eating, use thicker-skinned navels and Florida oranges. Tangerines and tangelos have similar personality traits to their sister citrus.

Select oranges that are heavy for their size. Avoid spongy, soft, puffy, or indented oranges. Surface scars and mottling are not important, so don’t fret over these superficial flaws.

Optimal Use and Combining:

Oranges are best used for juice or cut into segments as part of a fruit salad. They combine well with other citrus fruits, such as grapefruit or pineapple. Bananas and papayas also match up. But avoid mixing oranges with melons and other alkaline fruits. Citrus and melon are a poor food combo. And although oranges agree with strawberries in smoothies or fruit salads, they don’t get along as well with apples, grapes, and other sub-acid fruits. For a gratifyingly crunchy snack, mix oranges with nuts, especially almonds, or with high-protein granola.

Finally, as with all fruits, oranges have the highest therapeutic and nutritional value when they are fresh and whole.  In other words, fresh squeezed orange juice is far superior to orange juice from concentrate, which has been overly processed and devitalized of much of its phytonutrient content.  Similarly, fresh, living, raw oranges are going to deliver far superior health benefits than oranges from a can.

***This article is not intended to treat or diagnose any type of health condition or disease. Any nutritional considerations for any health complication should be discussed with your physician or healthcare provider.

How to Build the Habits of Physical Fitness

Building Immune Power and maintaining your body’s ability to self-govern, self-rejuvenate, self-repair is one of the keys to fighting off the forces of aging and disease.  Do you have a daily wellness plan in place to build your Immune Power and protect your long-term health and happiness?

In this 3-minute clinic we talk about the importance of developing the habit of physical fitness and what you can start doing today to build your cardio-pulmonary fitness, boost your immune system, and keep you youthful, vital, and energetic.

“Welcome to the three minute clinic on Wellness Planning; Wellness Planning 101. The theme for this month is self-care versus self-wear, the most basic theme of our program; taking care of yourself versus not taking care of yourself. In other words, we’re looking to build Immune Power; we’re looking to stay well and be well, and how to stay powerful and vital. So we’re talking about self-care today. I want to pick out an area of self-care today—and remember, it comes down to habits, it really comes down to your living habits; your thinking habits, your eating habits, your fitness habits, your attitude habits, and how you manage stress; that’s a habit as well. So self-care versus self-wear, let’s pick out one important area. Physical fitness: your fitness habits, your relationship with your body! Now everybody knows that exercise is good for them, from little kids to older people—everybody knows they need to stay in shape and that they need to work their bodies. I don’t need to tell anybody here about the epidemic of obesity, and what that’s doing to our lifestyles. So now, sedentary living versus active living, it’s a no brainer. You have to stay active; calmly active, actively calm, actively fit. Fitness feeds and fuels your body; fitness feeds your spirit; fitness feeds your mind. Being fit and being healthy go hand in hand. So self-care is about personal nutrition—food nutrition, physical nutrition, bodily nutrition. Your blood vessels, your heart, your lungs, your arteries, your veins, your capillaries—all your vital organs need oxygenation and need circulation. Without circulation it would be like having a planet without water. The key I want you to come out of this discussion with is this: that for those of you who are looking to stay well—which means you’re going to be powerful, you’re going to be vital, you’re going to be purposeful, you’re going to be mindful, you’re going to be soulful throughout your life; can you imagine what that’s like, how empowering that is? See that’s what it’s about, self-empowerment. Self-empowerment is what wellness planning is about; helping you plan your own ways of empowering yourself to be powerful. Think about it—if you don’t really work to empower yourself to be powerful, how can you stay that way? You see, people when they’re young have wellness, but as you get older you have to work at wellness. In the early part of your life, wellness is a given and a part of the warranty of being alive. But after thirty-five to forty, you have to work at it. So the self-care tip today is about exercising, here’s what I want you to do—number one, figure out what kind of exercise you love to do! It can be whatever you want, but you want to enjoy it. If you like jogging, if you like surfing, if you like tennis—pick out something you like to do, and I want everybody to have what I like to call a twenty-minute active period in the morning. It’s what we call the “hour of power” for self-care, and it begins with exercise. So whether you want to do a rapid walk, you want to work on the elliptical, or you want to take a jog, I want everybody out there to size up their physical fitness program and make sure that in the morning, in the first hour of your day you do some physical exercise. The second feature I want you to think about is strength training and resistance training. Somewhere during the week, perhaps two, three times you can get some weights. If you’re busy with your family, or you work long hours, or you have time to go to the gym, I want you to work on your toning. As you get older, the physical body requires toning and requires resistance training. So the key for today is this, remember self-care versus self-wear. The more self-care, the less self-wear, the better your wellness is—the more vital you are, the younger you are, the more energy you are and the happier you are! So the tip for today is again, focus on your physical fitness— I’d like everybody to have at least one aerobic or cadio experience in the morning for twenty minutes, and to figure out a way during the week to find two or three times when you can go to the gym, or go do some workouts to build resistance training, to build your strength, to build your endurance, and to tone your body.”