This time of year, many of us are so concerned with losing weight or setting fitness goals, that we lose sight of a health goal that may be even more important. “What about prevention,” asks registered dietitian nutritionist Felicia D. Stoler, DCN, MS, RDN, FACSM, FAND. “How about just staying well, because we can’t afford the down time! A lot of us are wage earners who don’t get sick days. Plus it’s hard to eat right, stay in shape or accomplish any other health goals, if we’re sick in bed with a cold or flu.”
To maintain our health, Stoler suggests trying something different this year. “Ancient civilizations used the bark of the silver fir to help maintain their health, especially during harsh winters. We now know that this tree bark is rich in polyphenols, which help to improve circulation and support the immune system,” she explains. European silver fir (Abies alba) bark extract contains powerful antioxidants. They are proving effective at helping people maintain optimal immune health.
There’s still time to rev up your defenses
Cold and flu season is getting a late start this year. There may still be time to get your immune system in better shape, and provide yourself with a little extra protection, before you’re hit with one of this year’s viruses. “The epitome of health is not whether you get sick, but how quickly you can manage symptoms of that infection or virus,” comments Stoler. “You might want to stay home one day if you get sick. By taking certain steps, you can maintain a more robust immune system. You’ll speed up recovery within a day or two, versus being knocked out for a week or two.”
- Wash away disease-causing microbes. “The flu virus can survive on hard surfaces for as long as eight hours. Wash your hands with soap and water after touching such common items as keyboards, door knobs and loose change. And keep your hands away from your face. Touching your eyes, mouth or nose is one of the most common ways to inoculate yourself with germs.”
- Consider a natural plant-based approach to immune support. “Today’s science shows that when something improves your circulation, your body absorbs the beneficial nutrients more efficiently. That’s what happens with Rev-Up Wellness Defense, which helps to safely modulate your immune system and keep it functioning properly. It is a combination of powerful natural antioxidants Abies alba bark extract, vitamins C (from Acerola cherries) and D3, selenium and zinc. It also contains Wellmune, which is clinically proven to mobilize the body’s natural defenses.” Clinical studies show the Wellmune in Rev-Up Wellness Defense shortens duration, severity and down time due to cold symptoms.
- Take a nap if you need one. “Sleep issues can lower you immune response, making you more vulnerable to getting sick. Even a 15- to 20-minute nap can be helpful.”
- Eat plenty of vibrantly-colored fruits and vegetables. “These play important roles in balancing the immune system. There is now science to support the old adage: an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Food is medicine. You need to eat good quality foods to provide you with a quality of life.”
- Get into the exercise habit. “I’ve made fitness such an important part of my lifestyle that I no longer have to keep track of how many minutes of exercise I get each day. Yes, training hard – such as for a marathon – may temporarily weaken your immune system, but exercise strengthens your body’s immune response in the long run.”
Be cautious about how you manage cold and flu symptoms
Many people jump to over-the-counter remedies, which suppress symptoms. “A lot of these ingredients have been called to task because they mask symptoms. They may even cause a rebound effect. Your symptoms could come back worse than before.”
She adds that there are also products that are over-stimulating to your immune system. Surprisingly, Stoler says this isn’t the answer. “An out-of-balance immune system can lead to trouble. There are times when your body needs the inflammatory response and times when it doesn’t. Instead of stimulating your immune system, you want to prime it so that it’s more responsive when you are exposed to a cold or flu.”
Stoler advises you to look for natural products, such as Rev-Up Wellness Defense, that are so efficient that you don’t need massive doses to keep your immune system stronger. “They aren’t going to prevent you from getting sick. But if you are exposed to a virus – as you might be this winter – your immune system will be ready to tackle it.”
She adds, “While plants can be powerful as home remedies, you’ll never get the same level of immune-boosting properties by sprinkling spices on your chicken casserole. You need a more concentrated dosage in supplement form.”
Rev-Up Wellness Defense will be available on Amazon.com and RevUpWellness.com.
Biography: Felicia D. Stoler, DCN, MS, RDN, FACSM, FAND
Dr. Felicia D. Stoler, America’s Health & Wellness Expert™, is a registered dietitian nutritionist, exercise physiologist and expert consultant in nutrition and healthful living. She was the host for TLC’s reality show, Honey We’re Killing the Kids. She is the author of Living Skinny in Fat Genes™: The Healthy Way to Lose Weight and Feel Great (Pegasus 2011). She specializes in integrating behavior modification to influence positive health outcomes.