So if you have unfortunately had antibiotics lately, I strongly suggest you do at least one month on a good probiotic to re-populate your flora.
Now that we have that established, here are some top tips to support your immune system on your very own! No doctors needed….hooray!
1. Avoid sugar and anything containing sugar (except whole fruit or freshly made juice) sugar depletes your immune system significantly for HOURS.
2. Increase fluids, this keeps your circulation flowing. Think of your insides without water being like a stagnant pond that has no flowing water, what happens to that pond? Bacteria grows, it starts to stink nothing gets in and nothing gets out. When you have a flowing stream internally nutrients can flow around freely and waste can get excreted.
3. Increase antimicrobial foods, antimicrobial basically meaning kills bad bugs. These foods are garlic, ginger, onion and chilli….these same foods also increase circulation and help clear any stuffiness and congestion.
4. Avoid caffeine and anything containing it, coffee, tea, energy drinks, soft drinks. The caffeine is very stimulating, this means it is depleting on your poor wee adrenal glands, which have enough to deal with waging war against bacteria!
5. Avoid emotional and physical stress, YES that’s RIGHT…”sweating it out” is a load of crap….Not only are you spreading your germs onto everyone else at the gym or in your training group, but you are wasting your precious bug fighting energy on the treadmill or lifting weights. This simply means the cold/flu will hang around for longer
Top nutrients for immune support:
- Vitamin C- enhances function of all immune cells and also supports adrenal function. Find this in citrus fruit, kiwifruit, peppers, parsley, broccoli, brussell sprouts, berries, kale.
- Zinc- Immune modulating. Find this in red meat, shellfish, pumpkin and sunflower seeds. (supplementation may be needed)
- Quercetin- antiviral, anti-inflammatory, blocks viral replication within cells. Find this in apples, citrus, onion, parsley, dark berries, olive oil.
- Vitamin A- nourishes mucosal linings (throat, nasal, intestinal etc), which enhances immune cell function. Find this in organ meats, cod liver oil, red meat or in yellow/orange/red fruit and vegetables (this form then needs to be converted, which is not as affective.
- Echinacea- one study found Echinacea taken alongside Vitamin C had a 85% decrease in incidence of the common cold. Another study found it reduced symptom duration by 1.5 days.
Meals I would suggest:
- Hot chicken soup made with the beneficial vegetables and herbs using an organic chicken frame for the broth
- Freshly made fruit and vegetable juices or fresh fruit salads
- Water water water
- Hot lemon and honey drinks (skip the whisky!)
FIRE CIDER: Cold and flu remedy
A hot, pungent, firey, sweet mixture that is extremely immune modulating. Filled with antiseptic ingredients known to have antiviral and antibacterial benefits.....Enjoy!
In a jar add in equal parts chopped or grated horse radish, garlic and onion. To this mix add ginger, about half as much as the other ingredients. Add 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper and cover the ingredients in the jar with organic apple cider vinegar.
Let this concoction sit for 3-4 weeks at room temperature and then strain and discard the herbs. Add honey (raw if possible) to taste and now transfer the mixture to the fridge.
You can simply take shots of this mixture to boost your immunity or make into a yummy salad dressing.