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The Club, Issue #009
November 19, 2020

Newsletter Issue #09 -November 2020

Happy Thanksgiving! A little early! I hope you are finding time to enjoy friends and family (physically distanced and safely) and find ways to be grateful for the good things you have in your life. With the way the world is right now, we can sometimes lose sight of the good things so take some time to appreciate what you have!

In this newsletter, you'll find...

📍Supporting Your Immune System with Vitamin D

📍Jump Rope Strength Workout

📍4 Plant-Based Sandwich Fillers

Supporting Your Immune System with Vitamin D

Since the COVID-19 pandemic is still going strong and we’re heading into cold and flu season focusing on supporting our immune systems is a really good idea right now. And not hard to do. There are numerous things you can do to strengthen your immune system and checking and boosting, if necessary, your vitamin D levels is one way to do it. Making your immune system strong isn’t a magic pill for never getting sick. But having a strong immune system will help you get sick less often and help you recover faster when you do get sick.

Many people are deficient in Vitamin D. It's estimated that about 40% of people in the U.S. have low Vitamin D levels. We think of Vitamin D as the “strong bones” vitamin but it does so much more for our bodies than just help strengthen our bones. Having adequate Vitamin D has been linked to a healthy immune system, fewer infections and more mild symptoms if you do have an infection in numerous research studies. The University of Chicago Medical Center found patients that were deficient in Vitamin D were almost twice as likely to test positive for COVID-19. And recent research out of Spain and Italy indicates that adequate levels can reduce the severity of symptoms if you do contract COVID-19.

The first step is to have your Vitamin D levels checked and to talk with your doctor about whether your levels are adequate for you.

If you do need to increase your levels, there are 3 main ways to get more Vitamin D. You can get it by eating foods that it occurs in naturally, through direct sunlight on your skin or through supplements.

While it’s great to get vitamin D naturally through food, it can be difficult because not a lot of foods have it. Eggs, fatty fish and some mushrooms contain vitamin D and foods like cereals, milks and orange juice are fortified with vitamin D. Trying to get adequate levels just through food is pretty tough, especially for those on a plant-based diet. These foods can help but you probably shouldn’t rely on them alone.

Your body can produce its own vitamin D when it’s exposed to the sun. Experts agree that about 15 minutes of exposure without sunscreen works for most people but always check with your doctor before relying on this alone. You may have factors that affect what a good amount of sunlight is for you personally.

If you don’t typically eat the foods that have vitamin D in them or if you don’t or can’t spend a lot of time outside, supplementation may be your best bet. Again, always check with your doctor and do your research before taking any kind of supplement.

You should continue to follow the CDC guidelines and your local government guidelines to stay safe but giving your immune system some natural support will help your health all around.

Jump Rope Strength Workout

Jump ropes are a very affordable way to get a great cardiovascular workout. Some fancy jump ropes can get pricey but you can pick up a typical jump rope for a few bucks online, in sporting goods or toy stores and I've even spotted them in my local CVS.

4 Easy Plant Based Sandwich Fillings

A plant based diet doesn’t mean you have to have to resort to alternative or faux meat sandwiches, or worse, no sandwiches at all. There are plenty of delicious sandwich fillers you can have.

1. The classic PB & J is always a good fallback. You can use other butters like almond, cashew or sunflower seed to change it up.

2. Another easy option is just a sandwich stacked with veggies like tomato, spinach, onion, pickles, sweet pepper, cucumber, carrots, avocado and hummus. You might be surprised how much you don’t miss the meat!

3. If you’re looking for something a little different, falafel is a delicious plant-based treat. Falafel is made with chick peas and a mix of herbs and spices and can be shaped into balls or patties. Often falafel is served with yogurt based sauce that is not plant-based but you can eat it with hummus or a tahini sauce instead.

4. And speaking of chick peas, I recently discovered the Forks Over Knives “No Tuna” salad and I love it! I’ll make a batch of it on Sunday and eat it for lunch all week. You can find that recipe here. Forks Over Knives "No Tuna" Salad Sandwich

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