5 Ways to Boost Your Immune System..

Making time for regular exercise (even during the busiest times of the year) helps keep the immune system running the way it should.

Your immune system likely needs a holiday boost, and you are the only one who can do it. (Things like stress, foods high in saturated fat, alcohol, and skipping exercise can all weaken this key part of the body that helps fight off infection and keep you healthy.) Put yourself at the top of your holiday checklist and give yourself this gift of health.

First, take this oath:

  • I will avoid colds and flu;
  • I will sleep at least 7.5 hours a night, and preferably eight;
  • I will eat well (meaning more vegetables and fruits and fewer processed foods)
  • I will set aside a sacred 20 minutes for exercise every day;
  • I will seek out positive social interactions.

So help me, health.

You’ve heard every one of the bullets points above, probably multiple times, and you may be anesthetized to them. But here is why actually committing to those resolutions is so important.

Our immune systems are the basis of our health, which of course plays a big role when it comes to our overall wellness and happiness. The immune system’s complex network of organs, cells, and molecules pro­tects us from anything foreign and potentially harmful, such as viruses, bacteria, cancer cells, toxic chemicals, and more. Through a process called the immune response, this system attacks invading organisms and substances as they enter the body and work to inflict disease. Especially important are the white blood cells produced and stored in the spleen, bone marrow, and other sites. They circulate through the body and spring into action to destroy potentially harmful foreign invaders — and then remember those invaders so they can guard against them in the future.

So it seems especially important to make sure your immune system is in top condition, as cold- and flu-season ramps up and the holidays put extra stress on our bodies (thanks to the social events, to-do lists, and potentially not-so-healthy indulgences that can come with the festivities). Paying a little extra attention can help keep you well now. And in the long run, you’ll begin a regimen that will help guard against chronic problems like diabetes, obesity, heart disease and hypertension, and even cancer.

Here’s how to keep your immune system running smoothly over the holidays — and all year long!

https://www.everydayhealth.com/columns/white-seeber-grogan-the-remedy-chicks/enhancing-your-immune-system-this-holiday/?xid=t

 

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Try our lighter carrot cake recipe.@clevelandclinic

Try our lighter carrot cake, which the entire family will love. It has just the right texture, like a slightly sweetened, light corn bread. It’s great on its own or with a dollop of frozen whipped topping or nonfat ice cream.

Ingredients

No-stick baking spray with flour
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
½ cup whole wheat flour
½ cup granulated sugar substitute
¼ cup packed light brown sugar
¼ cup nonfat dry milk
1 ¼ teaspoons baking soda
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground allspice
¼ cup canola oil
1 large egg
¾ cup egg substitute
1 ½ cups finely grated carrots
2 tablespoons finely chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons golden raisins ƒ
One 6-ounce can unsweetened crushed pineapple, drained ƒ
2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar, optional

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Coat a 10-inch pan with baking spray.
  2. Sift the white and whole wheat flours into a large bowl. Add the sugar substitute, brown sugar, dry milk, baking soda, baking powder and spices. Stir to mix well. Using the medium setting of an electric mixer, beat in the oil, egg and egg substitute until the batter is smooth. Fold in the carrots, walnuts, raisins and pineapple.
  3. Spread the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool in the pan. Remove the outer ring of the pan and sift confectioners’ sugar over the top, if desired. Serve at room temperature.

Nutrition information

ƒMakes 12 servings.

Serving: 1 slice

Calories: 120 (33% calories from fat) ƒ
Fat: 4.5g ƒ
Saturated Fat: 0g ƒ
Protein: 3g ƒ
Carbohydrates: 17g ƒ
Dietary Fiber: 1g ƒ
Cholesterol: 15mg ƒ
Sodium: 180mg ƒ
Potassium: 125mg

Dietitian’s Note: Never has carrot cake tasted so good, and been so guiltless! When compared to traditional carrot cake with icing, you save 180 calories, 12 grams of fat, and 4 grams of saturated fat. 

Chronic Lower-Back Pain. Physical therapy focused on core strengthening is one of the most effective treatments.

“Lower back pain is like death and taxes; everybody gets it at some point,” says out Sean Mackey, MD, PhD, chief of the division of pain medicine at Stanford University School of Medicine. About 9 in 10 of those patients recover fairly quickly, he says, but for the remainder, the pain becomes chronic and life-altering. (Try this 60-second fix for back pain.) “The severity of the original injury and how prone you are to anxiety plays a role in whether your pain will persist,” he says. Physical therapy focused on core strengthening is one of the most effective treatments.

Use a foam roller to roll away your back pain:

https://www.prevention.com/health/a20486144/top-painful-medical-conditions/