I am much better, although there’s still a little sniffle and a bit of stuffiness. I have never had allergies before, but I think my time has come. I am the oldest of five siblings born a total of six and a half years apart…my mother often said, “You kids don’t have allergies – I don’t have time for that!”

She said it so often in the winter that it became almost like an affirmation or a mantra. And it seems to have worked until very recently. I took all your suggestions about sleep and vitamins and oils. Thanks very much. I truly believe that keeping a strong immune system as Joanne said above is the key to good health. So, to thank you all, I’m going to reprint here a set of suggestions about how to keep your immune system healthy. And I’ll see you here next week as usual…now that things are usual again.

HOW TO STRENGTHEN YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM

Regardless of your current state of health, you will always benefit from strengthening your immune system. Here are some ways I have found that helped me to do that:

I – Invest
some time in learning new things, and be open to making some changes in your routines.

M – Movement
not necessarily “exercise,” if that doesn’t appeal to you. Something you enjoy, and can do easily and regularly, is a fine place to start. Walk? Dance? Swim? Bike? Whatever.

M – Manage your stress
we can’t make it go away, and we really wouldn’t want to. Meditation, prayer, other spiritual practices, physical practices like yoga, and less attention to the mainstream media news all might help.

U – Undo
some things in your environment that may be harmful, including parabens, lead, sodium laurel sulfates, fragrances, EMFs, dust, mold, other allergens.

N – Nutrition
eat a little bit differently, and think about how you cook and store your food. Pay attention to your choices, and start with things that are easy to change. Choose organic and/or local foods when you can. Learn more about spices and oils. Consider your cooking and storage utensils – start to eliminate plastics and Teflon in favor of glass and plastic.

E – Easy
be easy on yourself. You don’t have to do this all at once. Be proud of the steps you take, and do what you can with the time and energy and budget you have.

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