Here in Dorset we have certainly experienced a few cooler mornings since the arrival of October. We’ve not quite brought out the chunky knitwear and winter coats yet, but we’re not far off! We’re actually quite big fans of autumn and winter though. Some of our favourite walks are made even better by the striking autumnal colours and our big open skies offer up incredible early evening sunsets at this time of year. But something we aren’t keen on are the inevitable coughs, colds and flu. When illness strikes we always reach for our zingy Ginger and Sunshine Lemon tea for a healthy lift, but this year we’re already making it a daily habit as we know it can give our immune system a lovely boost and maybe, just maybe we’ll manage to avoid those wintery illnesses all together! Here are some natural ways to help stay healthy this winter.
Ensuring you drink enough water is absolutely essential if you want to stay healthy and maintain good immunity. We should all be aiming for 8-10 glasses of water each day, and by glugging down more of the good stuff, you’ll allow your body to flush out toxins and ward off illness. If you really want to get into the technicalities, one of the reasons water is so great at fighting off illness is because it helps to keep the mucus membranes of the nasal passage moist, meaning any germs are caught and stopped from entering your body! Not everything is caught by the first line of defence though, but being well hydrated helps circulation by increasing blood flow, meaning white blood cells (the ones that fight viruses) can get to where they are needed quicker if any germs do get through.
Get your hydration down to a tee with… our tea!
So apparently 50-60% of an adult’s body weight is made up of water, or maybe in our case, tea! Well that isn’t actually quite as daft as it sounds because with our super range of fruit and herbal teas, we can easily get our hydration sorted by happily sipping on our caffeine-free range throughout the day! Our Ginger and Sunshine Lemon is one of our faves at this time of year as its warm and zingy flavours remind us of our glorious Dorset sunsets. But with mint, camomile and foraged fruits to name just a few more, why not get stocked up and start a new hydration routine this month? Explore all our herbal teas on our shop.
Eat (and Drink) Healthily
Okay, so this may sound obvious but what does this actually mean when it comes to boosting immunity? There are a few things you can do that will really help to ward off nasties this winter when it comes to your diet.
Eating whole plant foods is the first easy step. By consuming more fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds and legumes you’ll be increasing the range of nutrients being delivered to your body and increasing your antioxidants. We talked about the benefits of antioxidants in a previous blog (all about our green tea), but essentially they will give you the upper hand when it comes to fighting free radicals (which cause damage and illness).
Many fruits and vegetables are also high in vitamin C and it’s well known that this helpful vitamin aides the proper functioning of the immune system. Citrus fruits are one of the best sources of vitamin C so it’s just another tick in the box for sipping away on a yummy cup of Ginger and Sunshine Lemon Tea. But it’s not only the lemon that makes it a winter winner. Ginger is another great staple if you want to use your diet to boost your immunity and it has such strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.
Limiting the amount of sugar in your diet is another way you can aide you immune systems’ ability to perform properly. Studies have shown that following sugar spikes, your immune system is supressed, meaning infections and illnesses could be more likely. As tea lovers ourselves we certainly aren’t saying we’ll never order another slice of cake, but we do recommend reaching for a lovely cup of fruit or herbal tea instead of a sugary drink!
Get Enough Exercise
According to the NHS website, exercise can ‘boost self-esteem, mood, sleep quality and energy’ and they go on to say ‘is the miracle cure we’ve always had, but for too long we’ve neglected to take our recommend dose’. By maintaining regular, physical activity you are also less likely to suffer at the hands of respiratory infections as it helps to boost your immune system. A review by the Journal of Sport and Health Science says that 30-60 minutes of near daily brisk walking can improve your body’s defence against germs. Well we’re pretty happy with that. We are great walkers and are often found strutting our stuff on the 10 mile stretch of promenade that runs from Sandbanks to Hengistbury Head, alongside our beautiful Dorset beaches! And if you’re an avid follower of our brewing blog you’ll also know our love for wild swimming! Not only is swimming great exercise, but, according to IPRS Health, regularly participating in cold water swimming teaches your ‘body to become better at activating its defences’ as the cold water boosts white blood cell count! We’ll see you in the sea…
If you’d like to try our Ginger and Sunshine Lemon Tea, or any of our other delicious Dorset Tea blends, then hop over to our tea shop now. For a limited time we are offering 25% off all tea, making this the perfect time to stock up on your favourites or try something new! Just enter code AUTUMNTEA at checkout for 25% off all our teas, valid until 13 October.