As we creep ever closer to reopening shops, gyms and life in general, we thought we would share with you a few of the things we tend to do (usually in winter when it's hard to avoid coughs and colds etc.!) to keep ourselves healthy in the face of omnipresent infections (you can't really get away from it when you sell echinacea, people always tend to run out just as they've come down with something yucky and have to run in and see us at their worst!). Honestly, you'd be amazed with just how resilient we are if you saw how many sick people we come in to contact with on a daily basis!
As a general first rule, we try to make sure that 80% of our food comes from fruit & vegetables. That helps to keep us hydrated (which is important for keeping lymph moving, detoxifying and generally firing on all cylinders), is full of phytonutrients, vitamins & minerals (which as we're all becoming more aware, help to keep your immune system optimally able to do its job) and fibre (which helps to keep your gut healthy, and if you didn't already know, about 70% of your immune system lives in your gut!).
Rule no. 2; vitamin D. We live on completely the wrong latitude to convert much useable vitamin D from the sunshine outside of June, July and August. Even then, most of us are clued up on the risks of skin cancer and include SPF in our daily routines. The best practice is to be tested and to know what strength you need to be supplementing. There is a lot of contradictory information floating round on the internet about how much is safe and current UK guidance from the Scientific Advisory Commission on Nutrition and the health watchdog the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) is that if you choose to take vitamin D supplements:
It is worth noting though, that RDA's are developed on the basis of the minimum amount required to avoid disease for average adult human, not to maintain optimal health. This is why you can be inside the 'sufficient' level when tested and still be symptomatic. We are not average in our biochemistry though, there's a huge difference between even siblings and even twins depending upon lifestyle, environmental exposure etc.
The third thing in our arsenal is echinacea. We know you probably know all about echinacea. However, did you know that you can use it as an antiviral gargle? We do this when we've been in crowded areas or in contact with anyone who's either looking, feeling or acting a little under the weather. In a similar way to a spritz of colloidal silver, gargling with echinacea makes us feel a little more secure that we've done everything we can to mitigate our risks. Or even easier to use is the A Vogel Sage & Echinacea Throat Spray!
Number 4 is our Prevention Oil. This oil is a blend of ravensara, niaouli, tea tree and cajaput. It's so antimicrobial and smells lovely! It's got a really nice warm, spicy kick to it. We've had it in our diffuser for the past 18 months (we predate the pandemic on that one because as we said earlier, we always have a good amount of people coming in to buy their echinacea over winter when they've already been struck down with a horrible bug, so it's been going since October 2019. Normally we'd switch to something light like Lemon Myrtle for spring/summer but.... pandemic!)
Fifth on the list, but by no means the least important is looking after both your mental and physical wellbeing! A little self-care goes a very long way and often doing something physical that you enjoy (heading out for a walk with a friend, dancing round your house like no-one is watching etc) will have a huge beneficial impact on your mental wellbeing as well. The gyms and swimming pools will be open soon if not already but if that's not your thing then getting in the garden, out into the woods or getting your yoga mat out at home are all equally good ways to take time for yourself and give your body what it needs to stay healthy.
Above all, enjoy your new found freedoms and keep it going with the hand washing, social distancing and following all the guidelines relevant to you in your area!