Preventing winter illness with everyday wellness

By Ashley Bunton - Staff Columnist

Often times people begin to take vitamins and medicinal products only after they begin to fall ill, but studies show taking preventative steps towards maintaining wellness can help to curb the severity and longevity of illness if it does set in.

Everyday wellness will have to include additional preventative measures during the winter months against things like colds and flus, sore throats, cold chills, headaches, listlessness and fatigue.

Hawaiian spirulina, a type of blue-green algae, contains the same or better vitamins as a daily multi-vitamin. I add the powdered spirulina to fresh-pressed orange or ginger juice or to smoothies. It’s an excellent antioxidant and detoxifier and it doesn’t take much blue-green algae to detoxify major organs of any bitter viruses, pesticides, and heavy metals that may be hiding in the body awaiting to take the immune system hostage. And only a teaspoon will do it, so don’t get heavy with it. The algae tastes like a bit of pond water, so it’s best to add it to something flavorful, like wild blueberries pomegranate arils.

To the same glass as fresh-pressed orange juice and spirulina, I add a half-teaspoon of liquid Blue Ocean Minerals, extracted sea minerals of magnesium and electrolytes. I’ve read that most people are deficient in magnesium as shown in a study that tested people with depression and 100 percent were found to be deficient in magnesium. Magnesium deficiency is said to contribute to allergies and immune system dysfunctions. Magnesium is easily absorbed through the skin so applying it as a topical lotion is as effective as taking it orally, as noticed by some people who like to bathe in Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate) to alleviate symptoms.

When someone says they feel better after taking a bath, there is truth behind that reasoning.

Hydration in the winter is important. People become too easily dehydrated because they may not think much about water during the winter. In the summer months or when exercising it is easy to know what dehydration feels like and many people carry a lot of extra water, but not so much in the winter. That doesn’t mean people need less water, however, because of the way the cold weather affects the body.

We also lose water by breathing and while we are asleep, which isn’t something I can control so the more I think about it, the more panicked I feel. I now have collected 50 reusable water bottles. The problem is, however, with the lids — I always lose them. This led me to purchasing CamelBak hydration packs, little pouches of water contained in a small purse or backpack.

The brain is made of water, so dehydration can shrink the brain and lead to headaches, chronic fatigue and dizziness. The CamelBak’s are a wonderful way to carry water around amusement parks and fairs too — we were allowed to bring the bags of water in so long as the security guards could check to make sure it wasn’t vodka; we assured them we’re too far ahead on our purified water game to look back and lose to drinking alcohol.

For all we know with science, it turns out that vitamin D3 isn’t even that important for survival. There are many people plugged into online articles bashing vitamin D3 for this or that reason. It’s horrible what they’re saying now about vitamins and fruits. Everyone has an opinion on something, I suppose. Though myself, I like to take a little bit of vitamin D3 during the winter months since we get less hours of sunlight, the source from which our bodies obtain energy that it converts into vitamin D3.

And there we have it, folks.

Our lives are so plain and simple now: spirulina, ocean minerals, water, vitamin D3: the essential elements of the beach, all conveniently wrapped up, packaged and provided at our doorstep for a small, nominal, one-time fee.

For those of us who can’t be somewhere closer to the southern hemisphere like Bali or Baha California, or even Arizona which is nice, we may have to suffer with bath salts, squeezing oranges and intravenously sucking up the ocean through tiny encapsulated pills — as if we are surviving impermanently on what Carl Sagan said was a tiny pale blue dot floating in the Universe.

In addition to light and nutrients, our breathing and air absorption will need to be fortified against airborne germs, viruses and dust. Dust contains many unknown elements that can trigger allergy symptoms like inflammation. I like to use an Olbas inhaler that contains menthol, peppermint, cajeput, and eucalyptol. Most stores carry Olbas products and Vicks brand that also makes their own type of inhaler. The inhalers support clean breathing, lung health, and help us to build resistance to the airborne particles we breathe in that may overburden our immune systems with a toxic viral load.

By Ashley Bunton

Staff Columnist

Contact Ashley by email at, by phone at (740) 313-0355, or connect on Twitter by searching for @ashbunton and sending a message.

Contact Ashley by email at, by phone at (740) 313-0355, or connect on Twitter by searching for @ashbunton and sending a message.