With autumn now upon us in the Southern Hemisphere, it’s time to prepare for the change of season. The cooler months can affect our skin, bodies and overall health in a myriad of ways.
The weather brings dryer and colder air, and we are less inclined to be active. We spend more time indoors, exposing us to more artificial light and heating. The season also brings its onslaught of inevitable colds and viruses for our systems to navigate.
However, there are simple and natural preventative steps to ensure we are optimally charged to combat the challenges of the season.
1. Boost immunity from the inside
A primary way to boost our immunity is through nutrition. By utilising the powerful natural properties of plants, we can prime our systems to fight wintery illnesses.
Key immune-charging ingredients for robust health include:
Citrus fruits are chock full of Vitamin C. This important nutrient functions to build white blood cells which ward off infections. Better yet, citrus is in season and abundantly available in the winter months!
• Ginger and turmeric
Ginger and turmeric are the roots of larger plants from the same family. These zingy cousins have been used in Asian civilisations for centuries for their anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antiviral properties.
Garlic is considered nature’s own antibiotic. Containing over 100 sulfuric compounds with immune-strengthening properties, the bulb is most powerful when taken raw. Regularly consuming garlic will see your system super-strengthened.
Esteemed through the ages for its natural antiviral properties and immunity enhancement this medieval herb makes a wonderful tea and pick-me-up on a cold morning. Thyme contains both Vitamin C and Vitamin E – a combination that packs a punch. Growing your own fresh source is achievable, with this wonder herb growing well in a small pot or window box.
Bees know how special all their hard work is. The sweet marvel that is honey contains natural antibacterial properties due to its hydrogen peroxide content. A spoonful of this liquid gold is enough to brighten up any gloomy day.
2. Nourish the body
A well-fuelled body puts us in the best position for health during winter.
Winter can see our bodies worn down by the elements and viruses, and more susceptible to fatigue and illness.
To nourish the body, prioritise consuming:
• Good fats
Omega-3 fatty acids help the body to function smoothly all over – from our cells, blood vessels to our joints. Find Omega-3 in fish, nuts and plant oils.
• Vitamin B12 and folate
These impressive micronutrients can be elusive in the modern diet. But their benefit for our overall health is huge at the cellular level. Seek out leafy green vegetables and bivalves (mussels, clams and oysters) to increase your intake.
Keeping hydrated in winter is important – even if we aren’t sweating as much as we do in summer! Remembering to drink plenty of water keeps our systems well-flushed and healthy.
3. Moisturise and protect the skin
With the help of targeted natural and organic skincare products, our skin can be protected from the buffeting effects of harsh weather.
And when it’s time to nurture our bodies after exposure to the wind and cold, intensive repair treatments work to soothe and settle dry, sensitive and chapped skin.
Choose products specifically designed to treat the unique requirements of different skin areas across our bodies.
Cold and dry winds are the enemy of lips! Using an everyday lip butter to moisturise lips, and an intensive balm treatment to repair dry or chapped lips will see your pout survive the winter well-nourished.
The Natralus lip care range has been designed to provide moisture, nourishment and protection to lips all year-round. The range features natural organic ingredients established for their benefits to lips, including shea butter, Vitamin E, and high-potency organic pawpaw.
The face is the most exposed part of the body to the elements. Even when the sun is hiding behind clouds, the UV levels can still be high. The Cancer Council recommends continuing to wear SPF 30+ during winter.
The Natralus range of face care products is designed to moisturise and hydrate the delicate skin on the face, protecting it from environmental effects.
Our hands encounter surfaces all day and external agents can strip the skin of its natural protective oils. Winter adds the effects of biting weather to this mix.
Natralus targets a range of hand concerns including exfoliation and hydration; intensive moisturisation and repair; and protection from external agents by forming a barrier around the hands.
Our bodies may be covered by clothes for most of the day but they still need care in winter. Taking the time to warm, massage and moisturise skin and limbs is a crucial restorative step for our skin and lymphatic system during winter.
Natralus skin care products nourish and protect the body using natural and organic ingredients free from petroleum, parabens and chemicals.
4. Head outside
While it can be difficult to rouse ourselves when the weather is miserable, benefits abound from grabbing the umbrella and stepping outside.
• Fresh air
Fresh oxygen helps assist our lungs to function well, which is key to our overall physiological health. Fresh air is also reported to lift energy, and feelings of wellbeing.
• Natural light
Natural light is needed for our bodies to make Vitamin D – a hormone required for healthy bones and muscles. The Cancer Council recommends just three minutes of sun for a Vitamin D hit. So catch some (sun-safe) rays this winter!
Central to warding off seasonal colds and flues is adopting preventative behavioural measures.
Effective handwashing is a pivotal health measure. When it comes to products to protect us from germs, we don’t have to compromise on forgoing chemicals for high quality natural and organic products. Some of the most powerful antiseptic and anti-bacterial agents are found in natural sources.
Natralus has harnessed the potent properties of tea tree leaf extract (Melaleuca Alternifolia) to create a unique antibacterial moisturising hand gel. Proven to kill 99.9% of germs, the gel can also be used as a surface sanitiser.
Following these simple tips will help you get winter-ready; ensuring your body, skin and health are nurtured, protected and strengthened.