Over the years I’ve worked with many of my patients on maintaining a healthy immune system especially during the winter months or when kids are starting daycare and school.
Since Covid-19 became a daily topic of conversation this has become more important than ever and we’re starting to take a more active focus on our health. I think it’s made many of us realise just how quickly things can change in our lives and whilst the material things in our world can be replaced, the reality is if we don’t have our health we really don’t have anything at all.
So what are some simple things you can do to keep your immune system healthy and strong.
Eat Fresh Fruits and Vegetables:
We should always be eating a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables everyday to get our share of vitamins and minerals which are imperative for a healthy immune system.
Eating seasonally and organically is the preference to ensure the appropriate nutrients are being made available to us and by keeping to a mainly organic diet you’ll ensure your avoiding pesticides and other sprays which can damage our own microbiome and increase the toxic load our kidney, liver and other organs have to deal with.
There’s nothing better than a big bowl of home made chicken soup when you’re feeling under the weather. That gorgeous home made chicken stock has a variety of amino acids, vitamins and minerals which will always hit the spot when you’re not feeling 100%.
Throw in some garlic, turmeric and ginger to the blend and you’ve got yourself a fabulous antibacterial, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory pot of magic.
Gut Health – My FAVOURITE topic:
I don’t think I”ve seen a patient in the past few years where this hasn’t been at the forefront of the conversation we have.
There are things we can do to keep our gut healthy and feed a healthy microbiome which in turn supports, including many other things, a healthy immune system and our mental health.
A healthy gut is best managed with gut healing foods such as meat stocks, fermented foods such as sauerkraut, kimchi and kombucha, good fats and managing our stress.
Vitamins A, C & E along with minerals such as Zinc and Selenium are all powerful antioxidants and minerals to the body which are vital to a healthy immune system.
Available in many good quality organic fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds, these nutrients support our immune system by supporting the production of macrophages, cellular function, support in times of viral infection as well as having an anti-viral effect on the body.
Ginger, Turmeric and Garlic:
All of these put together = health GOLD!!
These little gems contain anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties, just to name a few of their benefits and certainly in the context of our immune system are just things we can’t do without.
These can be taken grated into a hot drink such as lemon, ginger and honey tea to loosen catarrh build up and soothe a sore throat.
Or one of my favourites is to blend into a small cup of chicken stock a small amount of each grated and drink it to keep those nasties away.
Vitamin D is something we all assume we’re getting enough of from the sun, yet the majority of patients I see are surprisingly deficine in this area leading to lowered immune function, fatigue, skin conditions such as eczema, poor gut health and many other conditions influenced by lowered vitamin D in the body.
For the purpose of today’s topic, Vitamin D can enhance the immune response within the body to both bacterial and viral infections. It also supports the respiratory tract, can lower respiratory infections and does play a role in lung development which is why it’s imperative to have good Vitamin D levels during pregnancy.
Mushrooms (sorry not the magic ones):
Traditional Chinese Medicine has been using these for years with great success when supporting the immune system. In australia we tend to use shiitake, reishi, reishi, coriolus and cordyceps to name a few in our medicines and each of these mushrooms demonstrate immune stimulating and boosting properties.
Herbal remedies are some of the most effective ways of treating a variety of conditions including supporting the immune system or treating infections such as bronchitis, sinusitis, digestions or just the simple cold.
There’s Echinacea, Astragalus, Olive Leaf Extract, Andrographis, Elder Flowers, Golden Seal, Thyme, Cinnamon and Ginger just to name a few of the extraordinary herbal medicines we have at our disposal.
These support a healthy immune system with many of them being antibacterial, anti-viral, anti-microbial, blood purifying, immune stimulating, anti-catarrhal, detoxifying, tonifying and anti-inflammatory.
I guess what it comes down to is many of you are feeling very lost and confused as to what you should be doing at the best of times not just during Covid-19 when we feel like we just don’t have any control over anything that’s happening to us. If you feel like that then maybe take this time to take control of the one thing you can make positive decisions about… YOUR HEALTH!!!
Now is the time to start really taking care of you and your family, so grab a copy of my Mumma’s Own Imune Boosting Soups For Winter Cook Book or you can get a free cheat sheet from today’s blog.
Until next time, stay healthy and stay safe.
From the team at Mumma’s Own