This week we've been discussing what to eat or drink to help support your immune system. Today we're going to talk about what NOT to eat or drink to keep your immune system healthy. These tips can make the difference between keeping you healthy during the flu season this year or bringing you down for the count. You will find these tips to be really useful during the holidays when we are inundated with sweets, candies and treats, starting with Halloween in just a few weeks. Each of these things listed below have particular negative influences on your immune system and can just push you over the edge and into your sick bed.
- Soda, sweetened drinks or fruit juices. Yes, fruit juices. The amount of sugar, even natural sugar can put you over the edge if you are drinking a lot of fruit juice. The soda and sugared drinks are obvious because the amount of high fructose corn syrup in those sodas can suppress your immune system for hours after drinking one. So you are then unable to fight off the invading bacteria or virus. Also, bacteria LOVE sugar and carbohydrates. They thrive and reproduce on the high sugar in your system. If you are diabetic, you know this because the high sugar in your blood leads to an increase risk of infections. You can however drink diluted fruit juices without much problems.
- Sweetened coffee drinks. Well if soda and fruit juices are out, this is a no-brainer. Those Frappicinos have an incredible amount of sugar, calories, caffeine and fat in them. They make you gain weight and cause your immune system to tank when you are on the edge. The milk also can lead to increased mucous production.
- Alcohol, especially mixed drinks. Alcohol compromises your immune system partially because of the stress it puts on your liver to detoxify the alcohol. Mixed drinks and beer have a high amount of carbohydrates and simple sugars which we've already mentioned to be terrible for your immune system.
- Candy-Halloween candy, sorry to be such a killjoy but it's true. Halloween candy with it's concentrated sweetness and processed sugar are also a no-no. Your immune system and your waist line will thank you for this.
- Donuts, cakes, cookies, pies, pastries...same reason as above. Believe me, this is really hard for me too.
- Milkshakes, milk, ice cream and concentrated dairy products-produces too much mucous, many are allergic and for many people, it's hard to digest.
- Cheese-for the same reason as milk and milkshakes but since it's not sweet, I thought I would give it it's own category.
Remember on the first signs of a sore throat, fatigue, achiness, cough or other cold symptom. Get a lot of rest, don't exercise and avoid eating or drinking the immune depressing foods listed above. You'll get over your cold a lot quicker and in a lot of cases you can probably kick it off to enjoys these delectible items on another day.
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