Fall is a season of contrasts. On the farm, harvests begin to slow down, the bright greens and jewel tones of summer
mute into earthy hues and all around us Mother Nature is preparing for the impending winter. Off the farm, it’s an eventful season, with kids heading back to school, adults balancing busy schedules and the holidays fast approaching.
With so much going on, it’s easy to let some of your healthy habits fall by the wayside. But don’t let your guard down. That first crisp breeze is a reminder that winter is coming — as well as immune season. As the days shorten and temperatures drop, it’s a good time to give your immune system some TLC. Thankfully, there’s plenty you can do to bolster your body’s natural defenses even when you’re short on time.
Here are some of our favorite ways to give your immune health a boost this season.
REST UP. Sleep is your body’s time to replenish and recharge. Think of sleep like a bank account for your body, and when you get enough rest, it keeps your balance steady — or perhaps adds a modest amount of interest. Skimping on sleep slowly impacts your balance, and you might even find yourself in debt over time. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend seven hours or more nightly for adults.
STAY HYDRATED. As humans, we are mostly water. When you are properly hydrated, your body is able to use its various fluids to naturally remove waste by-products and maintain bodily processes, including transport of nutrients and oxygen to cells. Drinking plenty of water also naturally supports the immune system. Though you may sweat less in fall and winter than you do in the dog days of summer, the cooler, drier air does impact hydration levels — as does central heat. Carry a refillable bottle with you throughout the day so you can stay ahead of your thirst, and if you prefer, add a slice of lime or lemon, a few berries or even a sprig or two of basil or mint to your water.
OFFER A DAILY HERBAL SUPPORT. Herbs can help keep your immune system primed and ready, so add them to your routine starting now. By taking a daily immune formula with a blend of time-honored herbs, you can support your immune system all season long.* It only takes a few moments each day, but like flossing your teeth, wearing a hat in winter or eating your kale, taking your herbs can be a simple, daily habit.
Daily Immune Builder offers deep, long-term support to help the immune system face challenges.* Herbs such as Echinacea purpurea, Astragalus, Reishi mushroom, Schisandra and Prickly Ash have a long history of use in traditional herbalism for daily immune support.* (And, when taken in liquid extract form, herbs get absorbed faster since they partially bypass digestion.)
Tip: If you struggle to remember to take your herbs, add them to an existing habit that’s well-established in your daily routine. For example, you could take them before brushing your teeth in the morning or when you refill your water bottle throughout the day. And, if all else fails, set a reminder in your phone.
MOVE YOUR BODY. There are numerous reasons why exercise is good for us, from heart health and strong bones to a healthy mood and better sleep. Physical activity — especially when it involves nature — also helps the immune system. You don’t need to run a marathon or take up intense exercise to reap the natural benefits. Adults should aim for 150 minutes of moderate activity weekly (meaning you can still carry on a conversation during your workout), plus two strength-building sessions each week. This might include yoga, walking, riding a bike or playing golf or tennis. Chores like mowing the lawn also count.
EAT WHAT NATURE PROVIDES. The vibrant colors of fruits and vegetables aren’t just for show; each hue of the rainbow represents a phytochemical that provides our bodies with nutrients to keep us healthy. Some vitamins and minerals are called “essential” because we need to get them from food — our bodies aren’t equipped to produce them. All year long, including during immune season, your body relies on a nutrient-rich diet to maintain optimal health. Choose foods that suit your values and palate, but opt for whole, unprocessed and organic foods as often as possible.
BE READY TO RESPOND AS NEEDED. Sometimes, despite doing everything “right,” life throws you a curveball at the most inopportune moment. Such challenges are normal and what your immune system is designed for! Call in reinforcements, in the form of herbs that offer quick, vigorous support for immune system distress.* They can provide natural support during immune season.*
Tip: Check your supply of these herbs now, so they’re ready if you need them. You’ll thank yourself later!
To support a quick, vigorous response to immune system distress, reach for Rapid Immune Boost, with herbs like Echinacea, Goldenseal, Osha, Yerba Santa and Black Elderberry.* And, since immune challenges don’t consult your calendar before derailing your plans, keeping Herbs on the Go™: Immune Season — a portable, convenient herbal option — with you can be helpful. You simply spray it in your mouth and swallow, when and where you need it.