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Top tips: 7 Foods to Fight the Flu

We're so lucky to have Remedy Nutritionist, Jacqueline Alwill on hand to offer guidance and advice on all things health and nutrition.  But we're all about sharing the love around here, so don't think we're going to keep all of her top tips to ourselves!


One of our favourites is this hit list for your shopping list to help you get through the next flu season unscathed.

7 Foods to Keep your Health in Good Nick

…and avoid winter lurgies


by Jacqueline Alwill

When the winter hits I have the pantry and fridge loaded with all my remedies to ward off any of those winter beasts (read : sickness) and even the hint of a sniffle. It’s a kitchen stock up, protocol if you will, I’ve used with lots of families and individuals whom I’ve treated in my nutrition practice too. We have an abundance of incredibly nutritious foods at our fingertips that we can use as our medicine, so there is no reason we shouldn’t right?

FERMENTED FOODS

Top the list, because they feed and fuel the bacteria in our gut so we can thrive. In nutrition we learnt first and foremost, (and as you may be understanding increasingly as it comes into the media spotlight – hurrah!) the gut is the seat of our health. If we attend to the integrity of our gut, health, energy and vitality flows.

Fermented foods come into play because they are the richest food sources of pre and probiotics (a team of gut feeders) and enzymes. We need these nutrients not only to feed the good bacteria in our gut, but so our bodies can then combat the bad bacteria we come into contact with increasingly over winter.

What many people do however is go through winter, unprepared until they get sick, then after 2 weeks feeling rotten, a trip to the doctor and a course of antibiotics, decide they’ll turn to their kitchen and food for support. If we flip this, we put ourselves in a much better position to avoid getting sick, doctors visits and the damage a course of antibiotics does to our liver and digestive system. So when next you hit the grocery stores or however you do your shop, be sure to top up on the key fermented foods and integrate them daily to be one step ahead of the game.

Fuel with these key fermented foods:

Kombucha:

Remedy is my preference. I’m a nutrition partner with Remedy Kombucha because the quality of their product is superior to other kombucha in the market. Not only is it the only kombucha brand in Australia to have close to 0g of sugar, (this comes as a result of their fermentation process) but Remedy are constantly testing, researching and increasing the quality and quantity of the live beneficial bacteria in their blend.

Sauerkraut and kimchi:

Purchase these from the fridge of your health food store / independent grocer and aim for an organic brand. Integrate these into your diet daily if possible through fritters, wraps or simply on the side of your steamed veg, salad or soup. I’ve been known to have a small portion of kraut just on its own pre dinner as a snack, and I’m sure I’m not the only one.

Miso:

Is a heavenly little cup of warmth over the winter months and as a fermented soy bean is another great source of probiotics and enzymes.

 

CITRUS FRUITS

An oldie but a goodie – the citrus fruits! A few reasons why you want them sitting on hand and how to consume them as well. Citrus fruits are a seasonal winter fruit. Important stuff this eating for the season business and even more so as increasingly fruits and vegetables become available year round as a result of imports. Mother nature however recognises the change in season and enriches her produce – lemons, limes, oranges, grapefruit – with the vitamins we need including supercharged antioxidant, Vitamin C, in order to support our bodies and their fight against colds and flus! Eat them in winter!

And, to note, I say eat as much as possible when it comes to the sweeter variety here such as oranges. Whilst it’s tempting to juice a bunch of oranges and have a big glass, the benefit to our bodies and extraction of vitamins actually comes through eating the whole fruit, including all the juicy fibre. Fibre for gut health, vitamins from the whole fruit and also so that we avoid the big dump of (fructose) sugar that comes from simply juicing. Lemons are a bend on the eat the whole fruit rule. Few of us would want to anyway. So with lemons aim to use them every day throughout these cold months. Wake with the juice of a lemon and some warm filtered water to cleanse, kickstart and fire up the vitamin and antioxidant status in your morning, squeeze liberally over salads and steamed vegetables, fish, chicken, you name it. Have the bowl of citrus as a source of nutrition in your kitchen always.

BONE BROTH

Up there with fermented tea (kombucha) as an old remedy (pardon the Remedy booch pun) used for restoring the body to good health. As we now readily have many brands of beautiful organic bone broths available to us, you can purchase and keep in the fridge or freezer should the time not be available to slow cook your own. And that’s perfectly fine. We do not all have hours on a weekend to spend simmering away, when you can do so, but if it doesn’t allow aim for high quality that will deliver a broth rich in nutrition.
 

HERBAL TEA

Because it’s so easy to forget to drink plain water when it’s cold isn’t it? We’ve all been guilty of it. Water and the hydration of our cells is key for energy and immunity. We can live for days without food and survive but our cells cannot function and communicate effectively without H20. Stock up with some herbal (not caffeinated as the caffeine acts as a diuretic) teas in the cupboard.

Simple hydration in the herbal tea department can include:

  • peppermint tea – lovely digestive
  • liquorice tea – great for a sweet hit
  • chamomile – calming and soothing
  • ginger – digestive and immune boosting
  • passionflower – or a chamomile passionflower blend, for more restful sleep

 

DARK AND LEAFY GREENS

For life! As a nutritionist I will never let up on telling people to eat their greens and be creative with how they eat them. Blend them into soup or smoothies (aim to drink smoothies at room temp in winter so as to not chill the body or digestive system), steam veggies at night instead of eating salads, pop them in your eggy fry up at brekky, whatever and however is a great way to get those greens in.

Stock the fridge with these top players:

  • spinach
  • kale
  • broccoli
  • chinese vegetables
  • fresh herbs
     

MANUKA HONEY

An important one to mention particularly at present when I see more supermarkets with Manuka sitting on their shelf. There is admittedly some clever marketing going on around the Manuka ingredient and therefore it’s easy enough to think you’re buying something with nutrition / medicinal benefit when the reality is you may not. Look out for the Manuka MGO (methylglyoxyl) potency stamp. MGO is the main antibacterial ingredient in the Manuka. This stamp is the MGO number with a + sign on the packaging of good quality Manuka you may pick up. The numbers vary greatly. That which you can eat is generally between 100-400 MGO, higher than that have a strong medicinal effect 400 and above.

GINGER

Finally, our humble little root in the fruit and vegetable drawer, ginger. A circulatory stimulant (goodbye cold hands and feet during winter), digestive aid and powerful immune booster. There are so many ways you can use this root in your cooking as a medicinal food. To top the list, warm and soothe the body, think curries, soups, carrot and ginger juices, or a simple ginger, lemon and honey tea.

Because proactive is of greater benefit than being reactive when it comes to health, I encourage you to fill the pantry and fridge with these ingredients and keep close to you always…

'Let food be thy medicine and thy medicine be thy food' (Socrates)

 

This post was originally published on The Brown Paper Bag

Banner image credit: Jacqueline Alwill for The Brown Paper Bag.

Footy stars crack open a kombucha

We all know that the days of professional footy players cracking open a beer in the change rooms straight after every game are long gone. But did you know that many players are now cracking open a kombucha? That's right, some of your favourite footy players are also some of Remedy's biggest fans, thanks to the supporting role kombucha plays in boosting natural energy, gut health, recovery and overall wellbeing.

This year, Remedy Kombucha is proud to be an official partner of the North Melbourne Football Club, keeping their club room fridge stocked to the brim with our delicious, healthy, I Quit Sugar approved kombucha.

Robbie Tarrant RemedyLuke McDonald RemedyMo Hope Remedy

Pictured above L-R: North Melbourne Vice-Captain, Robbie Tarrant;  Collingwood AFLW Marquee Player, Moana Hope; North Melbourne player, Luke McDonald.

It's not just the boys getting in on the kombucha craze. We are also a proud official supporter of AFL Womens star, Moana Hope, who appreciates Remedy for its goodness but also tells us she just loves the taste! We love Mo's approach and attitude. It's somehow both real and relatable and inspirational all at once. She is all about showing that that footy is for everyone, and we're stoked to have her on board to help spread the message that kombucha is for everyone too.

So what is about kombucha that has footy clubs and their players so excited? Rather banging on about it more ourselves, we asked a couple of AFL experts on football player health and wellbeing.

Jona Segal, Dietitian and Strength & Conditioning Coach North Melbourne Football Club says Remedy Kombucha is part of North Melbourne's holistic approach to improving their players general health and wellbeing through diet and an increasing focus on gut health.

"The fact that Remedy naturally contains no sugar was really important. It’s increasingly clear that even if you can burn off sugar, too much of it can have other negative health impacts," says Jona.

"I also believe kombucha is an excellent addition to our players’ diets because it contains live cultures and organic acids that can aid digestion and help the body absorb minerals.

"Remedy is also a great source of antioxidants and has excellent anti-inflammatory properties."

Thanks guys. We love ya guts!

Bec Judd's gut health routine

It's no secret that Rebecca Judd is busy. The TV host, brand ambassador and mum of four (including twins!) is the very model of a modern day savvy boss lady.

We know we're not the only ones who see everything she is up to and ask, how does she do it all?

Well, last weekend she let us all in one of her secrets: taking gut health seriously. Bec posted a pic on her Insta-story to show just how serious she is, showing off all of her fave products for good gut health, including - yep, you guessed it - Remedy Kombucha!

Such is the interest in how Bec manages to do it all and look after her health and wellbeing, the Daily Mail even picked up the post and shared it with their huge international audience!

Thanks for the shout out Bec, we love ya guts!

Lisa Wilkinson is OBSESSED

We knew Lisa Wilkinson was a fan of our kombucha! But it wasn't until yesterday morning when the Today Show host declared her love for Remedy Kombucha on national breakfast television that we knew just how much of a super fan she really was. During a nutritionist segment on gut health, Lisa whipped out a bottle of Remedy and said:

"I'm obsessed with this stuff. This Remedy Kombucha I drink of a bottle of this a day."

"It's a cultured live drink and it's delicious."

Couldn't have put it better ourselves! Ever the cynic, her co-host Karl questioned whether it was really just a fad, but Lisa set him straight, telling him how looking after her gut health has changed her life for the better.

"I find that since I’ve been concentrating on my gut health, I’ve been healthier, I’ve felt much better for it. Particularly this stuff (Remedy Kombucha); I just love it."

It's not the first time Lisa has shared the Remedy love though. In a recent cover story for YOURS magazine, she talked about how Remedy Kombucha is a part of her daily beauty routine.

Thanks Lisa. We love ya guts! xo