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BRaG Residents Association

BRaG Nutrition

Sunday, March 22, 2020 

Here at BRAG we want to help each other to feel empowered and strong during this exceptional period, so we thought it might be useful to share some top tips from a nutritionist on how to nourish ourselves, boost our immunity and give our bodies every chance to smash the virus quickly if it does catch up with us. Clearly following some of the advice will depend on what we can obtain from the shops and does not negate the need for social distancing and the occasional glass of something stronger! (BRAG advice, not nutritionist)

How to eat like a human and keep well whilst we work at home

Plan your day and meals:

  1. Create structure to your day and maintain regular hours, including your daily time to get outside and exercise (maintaining social distancing obvs) and prioritising sleep!
  2. Create a menu plan for the week and rotate some quick and easy nourishing breakfasts and lunches
  3. Batch cooking with plenty of leftovers for next day lunches eg. salads, bean dishes, rice and pasta dishes
  4. Spend 10 mins on food prep in the morning laying out chopped fruit, nuts, seeds and chopped crudité will help you make better choices through the day rather than nibbling on biscuits and crisps etc

Create a rainbow:

  1. Cook soups – an easy way to eat a bowl of mixed veggies daily - lightly cooked with bone broth (immune boosting). An easy way to incorporate eating a rainbow and such great fibre which is so important for gut bacteria which helps improve our immunity. Throw together a peeled onion, any veggies from the fridge, an organic stock cube, some herbs and a handful of lentils or two and 20 mins later have a wonderfully nourishing meal.
  2. Make Veggie Juice - to achieve eating 7-10 portions of fruit and veggies a day make veggie juice eg. carrot, apple, ginger, or green juices with just about anything from the vegetable drawer with one piece of fruit such as apple or pear. Add fresh mint to give a wonderful fresh taste
  3. Create a variety of healthy and delicious wraps for lunch. Start with a base of hummus or smashed avocado and layer in any of the following; shredded red cabbage, dark green leafy salad leaves eg. rocket, spring onions or red onions, tomatoes, leftover roasted veggies, beetroot, artichoke hearts and top with some extra protein eg. falafel, chickpeas, prawns, salmon (tinned works well), mackerel, tuna, chicken. Fresh herbs take it to another level, so always scatter chopped mint leaves, coriander, parsley, basil. To finish, sprinkle with seeds or pine nuts and a squeeze of lemon juice. You can get super creative with these and they always turn out well and only take 5 mins to create a super nutritious nutrient dense meal
  4. Eat plenty of green veg. I would say a 1/4 of every meal is dark green leafy veg or cruciferous veggies such as broccoli, pak choi, brussel sprouts, kale, swiss chard, cavolo nero & cauliflower
  5. Create a plate of crudité of chopped veggies and dips such as baba ganoush, butter bean or hummus dips so nibble on if you get the munchies during the day

Super boost:

  1. Incorporate fermented foods for gut bacteria eg. kefir, kombucha, miso soup, live yoghurt, sauerkraut or kimchi
  2. A mid afternoon snack of a couple of squares of dark chocolate (70%+) and a few nuts will help you keep your mood boosted and aid memory
  3. Keep hydrated. Add fruit to your water jug to give it a nutritious boost and add lemon or orange slices to green tea. Drink plenty of green tea – it contains L-Theanine which is a wonderful amino acid that helps reduce anxiety and stress levels and helps regulate our serotonin levels
  4. Boost your Vitamins - Daily Vitamin D spray, Daily Vitamin C minimum 1,000mg Liposomal & Zinc/Copper formula and cook with tons of garlic, onions, turmeric, ginger - all immune boosting
  5. Daily blasts of cold water in the shower chill

 

Thanks to KT2 resident Tina Stonely @The Nutrition Guru – see her blog for more inspiration and healthy ideas.

The nutrition guru

two ways

Factors That Affect The Immune System

There are many possible factors that can weaken the immune system as listed below:

  • High sugar diets: Sugar decreases the ability of white blood cells to kill pathogens almost immediately. It is especially important to cut out sugar when you feel that you are coming down with an infection.
  • Dehydration: Every process in the body takes place in the fluids within our bodies; lack of hydration will hinder the normal biological processes and thus affect immunity.
  • Sleep disturbances: Sleep is absolutely essential for optimum health; during sleep there is growth and regeneration of the immune system, nervous system and the musculoskeletal system; if your body is fatigued due to lack of sleep, then you will feel tired and it will be harder to fight disease.
  • Stress: Most stress is unavoidable and we all face some degree of stress, however if stress levels becomes overwhelming, then your body will find it difficult to fight off disease.
  • Exercise: When you exercise, you increase circulation to every tissue and organ within the body; the individual components that make up the immune system are better circulated and help ensure the immune system has a better chance of acting on the pathogens before they get a chance to spread.
  • Poor diet: A balanced and healthy diet is important to ensure optimal immunity; try to consume whole grains and healthy fats found in fish, seeds and nuts; include garlic and onion into your foods for their antimicrobial properties.
  • Lack of vitamin D: Vitamin D’s role in maintaining a healthy immune system is unquestionable and most of us are vitamin D deficient.
  • Too much alcohol: drink only in moderation as going over the recommended units of alcohol per week can reduce your immunity

http://www.thenutritionguru.co.uk/blog/super-charging-your-immunity

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