November 2015

Ready for Winter?

ARE YOU READY FOR WINTER?

Those of us who are fortunate enough to own a car, always make sure we get it ready for winter. If you live where snow tyres are an asset, you make sure they are changed in time for the first heavy frost or snowfall. The battery is topped up, windshield wipers are in working order, and the windshield fluid is changed to the anti-freeze type. And then you're ready for whatever the season may throw at you.

But what about YOU and YOUR body? Are you ready? To combat colds and 'flu, it's important to make sure your immune system is healthy and robust. The immune system is that which keeps you fighting off disease, repairing cells and even keeps you looking younger. Should your immune system be compromised in any way, you'll feel exhausted, constantly battling infections, colds, inflammation and generally not feeling well.

How do we do that? You might want to start by considering the kind of foods you eat. Are you REALLY eating healthily? Personally, I view eating Organic Food as preventative medicine. If that's not possible for you, I suggest you cut out as many high fat and processed foods as possible, and cook from 'scratch' if you can. Yes, it takes up a lot of time, especially for those working a 9 - 5 pm day, or even night shift. You might want to have a cook-in on a Saturday or Sunday, or whichever day you have free. Preparation is the key. If you are not prepared, if the chicken is not thawed, or there is no fresh salad in the 'fridge, you will be tempted! It's so much easier to buy a pizza, a can of spaghetti, or something easy and quick to heat up; and honestly, that's not the way to do it. Add sugar and sodas to your list of things to avoid. READ the content labels on everything. You will be surprised how much sugar is in much of what you consume.

It is considered 'healthy' to have up to two colds a year, thus boosting the immune system into a more intense working mode. More than that and you want to have a serious look at your lifestyle and how you can responsibly get yourself back to a healthier way of living. Your symptoms may be as the result of stress, a disease, poor living conditions, a poor diet or even serious medical treatments such as chemotherapy. Increasing your vitamin intake might be a good remedy, adding fresh fruit and vegetables to your diet, (try fresh instead of canned and frozen) as well as raw nuts, seeds, grains and other high fibre foods. Sleep, glorious sleep, can help you get back on track, too. The amount is different for each person, however if you get a chance to sleep until you wake up without an alarm, that's how many hours you need. Avoid stress, where-ever possible. Fasting now and again is a good idea, we all take in toxins from the environment whether we know it or not. Moderate exercise is a must-do. You don't have to join a gym, walking is a great form of exercise. Become a Mall-Walker. It's fun, and free!

Here is a picture of a healthy home-made soup that you can easily make and enjoy. The recipe is below.


Cheron Dearle Holistic

Home-made Chicken Soup with Vegetables



Serves 4 - 6 persons

1 Organic chicken about 1.5 kg; or 4 chicken quarters
Skinned and de-boned

1 litre Gluten-free chicken or vegetable stock (liquid or in cube form)
or 1 stock-cube per litre

2 tbsp Organic coconut oil

2 Garlic cloves

1/2 Leek

4 celery stalks

1/2 sweet potato

1 small butternut

1 zucchini

1 carrot

1/2 sweet red pepper

salt, pepper and 1 teasp Marjoram

Method:

Wash the celery and leek stalks, removing all traces of grit. Peel and chop all vegetables into bite-sized pieces, removing seeds where necessary.

Lightly fry together adding the chopped garlic. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces and add to the fried vegetables. Make sure the garlic doesn’t burn. Add the rest of the chopped vegetables, cover with the chicken or vegetable stock.

Add the herbs and season to taste. Cover and cook at a medium heat for 10 mins, then reduce heat and cook for a further 40 mins, stirring occasionally. This can be portioned and frozen, ready to be eaten as desired.

Note: Any or all of the vegetables can be substituted, pre-soaked beans can also be added.