Immune System Boosting Herbs and More
Thyme has natural antiviral properties that stimulate the body’s defenses against colds, flu, bronchitis and sinusitis. When used to treat stomach flu or diarrhea, they also facilitate good digestion and act as astringents.
Lemons are an excellent source of Vitamin C, a natural antioxidant that improves the immune system and has antibacterial and antiviral qualities. Lemon water mixed with honey can be a great way to boost the body’s capability to fight diseases.
If your not a fan of fresh lemons dried ones work great as well and you can add these to a stew or soup by piercing the skin or cutting one in half and add them into your soup or stew the last 15 or 20 minutes of cook time. They’ll add a slightly sour taste, and a big dose of vitamin c! The entire lemon, skin and all can be eaten.
Garlic contains compounds that help the immune system fight germs.
Whole garlic contains a compound called alliin. When garlic is crushed or chewed, this compound turns into allicin (with a c), the main active ingredient in garlic.
Allicin contains sulfur, which gives garlic its distinctive smell and taste. However, allicin is unstable, so it quickly converts to other sulphur-containing compounds thought to give garlic its medicinal properties.
These compounds have been shown to boost the disease-fighting response of some types of white blood cells in the body when they encounter viruses, such as the viruses that cause the common cold or flu.
Onions are packed with immune-boosting nutrients like selenium, sulfur compounds, zinc, and vitamin C. In addition, they are one of the best sources of quercetin, a potent flavonoid, and antioxidant that has antiviral properties as well as histamine regulating effects.
The following are not herbs, but THEY WORK like magic to boost your immune system.
Without sufficient sleep, your body makes fewer cytokines, a type of protein that targets infection and inflammation, effectively creating an immune response. Cytokines are both produced and released during sleep, causing a double whammy if you skimp on shut-eye. Chronic sleep loss even makes the flu vaccine less effective by reducing your body’s ability to respond.
1 HOUR OF CALM MINDFULNESS AND GRATITUDE
An incredible study several years ago has shown that your immune system can be turbo charged by boosting it’s function up to 50% in 4 days by simply taking time out of your day to spend an hour in peaceful mindfulness and gratitude. Shifting your mind to a positive, calm atmosphere also shifts the chemicals your body produces, your cells and how your body repairs itself! It’s one of those things that anyone can do, and it’s free.
*TIP – If you can’t manage to find an hour of spare time in your day, start off with whatever time you can manage,
5 minutes a day is a great start!
STORY TIME – HOW TRIPLED MY IMMUNE SYSTEM FUNCTION IN ONE DAY
This is actually my wife’s story – during her time living on a campus in close quarters with other students she found she was catching every cold and flue that went around until suddenly the lights went on and she realized if her immune system was functioning properly she shouldn’t be catching anything!
She decided to do an experiment, she vowed to get the amount of sleep she personally needed to functional optimally during the day, AND anytime she felt a little bit run down like a cold or flu might be on it’s way she’d make a point to put 1 drop of lavender essential oil in her hands and cupping her hands over her nose breath it in for 1 minute.
Two or three times a day this would be her practice on days she was particularly exhausted. The results were truly astounding! For the entire year she did these simple things (sleep and Lavender essential oil) she didn’t once catch any of the flu’s or colds that were going around campus.
It goes to show you how minor tweaks in our lifestyle can result in massive changes in our health. Each day for her was a blank canvas and as long as she slept enough and did her oil on rough days each day was full of vibrant health.
How To Sanitize Your Hands Without Hand Sanitizer
The above statement might seem insane but people have been sanitizing their hands for thousands of years, long before the invention of modern day sanitizer (which strips away all of your bodies natural oils, resulting in terribly dry skin). Lets dive in.
Hydrosols (Rose water) have been used for thousands of years and are a byproduct of making rose essential oil, the steam from distilling the rose petals in pure water is saved and is simply called Hydrosol. Hydrosols are anti-bacterial and anti-viral.
Originated from Ancient Persia, and practiced to this day throughout the Middle East is a very common culture to pour rose hydrosol (Rose water) on your hands at funerals, worship places, cemeteries, so when people who are gathered together crying and kissing each other to comfort and console one another, rose water does its job as a sanitizer as well as emitting its good odour to change the mood.
To use hydrosols (Rose water) as hand sanitizer simply spray onto your hands and rub, this will do just the same as commercial alcohol based hand sanitizers, BUT without stripping your hands off of their natural oil, which is particularly important for people with dry skin or skin conditions such as psoriasis or eczema to keep their own body naturally occurring oil.
Be careful not to buy a fake hydrosol. Fake hydrosols smell the same but have little to none of the therapeutic benefits that real hydrosols have. If your not sure, here is How To Spot A Fake Hydrosol.
Not only does orange hydrosol smell refreshing but it also has wonderful anti-viral and anti-bacterial benefits, similar to rose hydrosol.
As well as being anti-viral, frankincense hydrosol also has the benefits listed below and is particularly effective for your lungs which is so useful for any virus that attacks your lungs or any part of your airway.
- Helps dry up excess mucus and expel phlegm from the lungs
- Deepens and expands breathing
- Useful in acupuncture on the lung meridian
- May be beneficial for mouth and gum infections
There are an abundance of ways to sanitize your hands without the alcohol chemical based stuff sold in the stores. More ideas here.
Repair Joints Naturally
It’s hard to even begin to emphasize the amount of benefits that come from bone broth. It is truly like liquid magic. You can make it yourself here. The glucosamine in bone broth can actually stimulate the growth of new collagen which in turn repairs cartilage. It is actually like magic, and it’s VERY easy to make. But it doesn’t stop there
Here are just some of the benefits of bone broth besides containing L-Glutamine which plays a major part in joint health.
- Stronger, healthier nails
- Arthritis and joint-pain relief
- Can alleviate diabetes and lower blood sugar; supports insulin regulation
- Can improve sleep
- Helps regulate bleeding from nosebleeds, heavy menstruation, ulcers, hemorrhoids, and bladder hemorrhage
- Helps normalize stomach acid, which is useful for colitis, celiac disease, ulcers, and other inflammatory gut condition
More about bone broth here.
The Indian spice turmeric contains an active ingredient called curcumin that reduces inflammation in a variety of ways, including the down-regulation of COX-2 enzymes; suppressing COX-2 enzymes is also the way NSAIDs like aspirin and ibuprofen work.
Speaking of Ibuprofen, it creates havoc in your gut by killing off good bacteria, so if you DO actually end up taking Ibuprofen at any point for anything it’s important to replace that good bacteria with a probiotic pill or cup of natural yogurt.
When inflammation quiets down, joints feel less painful and stiffness fades away.
Turmeric can be made into a tea, or added to yogurt (like a nice dip), it’s important to eat some natural fat with turmeric so your body can absorb the maximum goodness from it. Yogurt already has natural fat in it, but if you take it as a tea add a little oil, or eat something oily or fatty (good fats not GREASE), shortly after
Onions and Garlic
Onions are a rich source of quercetin, an antioxidant that works to reduce inflammation. Red onions are particularly high in antioxidants. Garlic contains allicin, a compound that can help to alleviate symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis.
Onions and garlic are best eaten raw, chop them up into yogurt and eat as a yogurt salad,
Be consistent on a daily basis eating bone broth, turmeric (which actually tastes great in bone broth) and fresh onions and garlic. You WILL notice a difference in your joint health after several weeks to a month, then continuing this habit and making it a lifestyle will help bring back youth to your joints!
The problems we encounter with our bodies are many, if you have a particular problem and you’d like to know what herbs, and action are best for it please do comment and we’ll create a section for it on this page.