Are you one of those people who feel like a magnet to all kind of microorganisms? Every change of season, do you start panicking and cold remedies are number one in your shopping list? Are you sick of being sick?
If so, just keep reading. I do not promise miracles but at least you would have new resources to boost your immune system and mitigate your discomfort, because…
…even though the use of masks and the habit of sanitizing our hands several times a day that have come with Covid have made as if seasonal infections had disappeared, we cannot forget that there are still a lot of other guys out there willing to mess with our health!
Before starting my healthy journey, every winter (and in fact every summer…thanks AC!) I used to get sick. I would then pop tons of paracetamol, ibuprofen, antihistamines and other traditional drugs (after I realized that antibiotics did nothing against viruses and caused me candidiasis) and it would take me at least a week to recover and be able to function.
Now I cannot remember the last time I took a paracetamol. First, I do not get as sick as I used to thanks to a change in my overall habits (but that would be a topic for a whole new post) and second, the minute I feel some kind of discomfort that announces that “somebody” may be messing with my system I start taking my Almost Miracle Tea! It not only makes me feel great, but it also tastes great and gives me that comfy feeling so needed when my body is not feeling so well.
It basically includes the most powerful ingredients with antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties to boost my immune system, ease my symptoms and fight against any infection threatening my wellbeing.
So, the next change of season or whenever you start not feeling that well just boil some filtered water and include in it the following ingredients:
- Turmeric. Its primary active component, curcumin, is great to detox and eliminate all kinds of toxins and heavy metals. It also has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antibacterial and antiviral properties. Normally, curcumin’s effects only remain in the body for approximately an hour but its bioavailability (the amount of a substance that is absorbed or able to be used by the body) increases when combined with black pepper. That brings us to our second ingredient…
- Black pepper! Piperine, its main component, not only helps with the absorption of curcumin but also has potent antioxidant properties itself preventing the damage caused by free radicals to our cells. It also has been proven to effectively fight inflammation and preliminary studies have shown that it may increase the good bacteria in the gut, essential for a strong immune system!
- Ginger. Contains gigeroil, which has powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, acting as a potent pain reliever. Certain chemical compounds in fresh ginger help your body ward off germs, halt growth of bacteria and fight viruses like respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), a common cause of respiratory infections.
- Garlic. It has been proven to boost the function of the immune system. Some studies have shown that it not only can help prevent the common cold and flu but also reduce the length of the symptoms. Its sulfur compounds have detoxifying properties, and it is rich in vitamin C (a powerful antioxidant).
- Oregano. It has very potent antibacterial (thanks to its carcavol), antifungal (it is especially effective against candidiasis) and an tioxidant properties. It may improve gut health by killing parasites and protecting gut lining from damage and it helps reduce inflammation.
- Lemon/lime juice. They are rich in vitamin C and antioxidants, which apart from its inti-inflammatory properties, can strengthen your immune system and help your body fight off infections such as the cold and flu virus, and may also shorten the duration of their symptoms.
- Coconut oil. It has a high concentration of lauric acid, responsible for the protective properties of breast milk. When digested, it forms a substance called monolaurin, which is an antimicrobial agent that can kill harmful pathogens like bacteria, viruses and fungi like candidiasis.
I will add the turmeric (a tablespoon of powder or about a finger, sliced, if fresh), ginger (about a finger, sliced), garlic (a sliced clove) and oregano (about a teaspoon) to a big pot with 1L filtered water and let it boil so that I have enough for the day. Then, I will use a strainer (in case I am using fresh ingredients) and I will add the lime juice (half a lime per serving), the black pepper (1/4 teaspoon) and a teaspoon of coconut oil as I consume it. Do you need an extra boost in the morning? Add some matcha or green tea! Are you craving sweet things? Add some raw honey (antibacterial, antifungal and soothes sore throat) but please, do not fall into the comfort food trap, sugar and other proinflammatory food will only strain your already strained immune system.
Getting into the cold waters of the Pacific at 6:30 am in the morning in the middle of the winter with the high humidity levels of Lima city puts any immune system at test and is like buying tickets for a cold party! So apart from taking my “Almost” Miracle Tea, these are some of the things that I do to boost my immune system:
- I take supplements or foods that contain the following micronutrients: Omega 3 fatty acids (which decrease inflammation), vitamin D3 and zinc.
- First thing in the morning I use my favorite tongue scrapper from the Healthy Living Store to get rid of the bacteria present on my tongue.
- I avoid pro inflammatory foods like processed foods, sugar, alcohol and vegetable oils.
- I take an Epson salt bath once a week. It helps me eliminate toxins and reduce stress which has a very negative impact in the immune system.
- Pay attention to my sleep and let my body rest whenever I feel it requires so.
Hope you find these tips helpful and alleviate your transitioning into the colder seasons. Just as proof of its magic I will assure you that the last time we caught a cold (these things tend to be shared in a couple) my hubby went for the traditional drug alternative and I went for the natural one and I recovered in half the time. Luckier or smarter? It’s up to you to decide.
Integrative Health Coach and Lifebook Leader