There is always that time of the year when seasons change.
Temperatures swing from high to low and so often our bodies cannot adapt quickly enough.
It is clear that cold and damp weather is the time when we should be more careful. This is the time when our organism is most susceptible to infections and our immune system has to work overtime.
Then add into account all those other obvious risk factors that suppress our immune system.
The polluted air we breathe in. Our Diet. The level of stress in our everyday life and insufficient rest most of us get. And all those negative emotions as well.
Clearly, we should do our best to help our immune system cope with all that.
Is there anything that can boost our immune system and we don’t get sick so often?
Yes! There is and it can be so easy and natural. Harmless and inexpensive as well without side effects.
Help yourself by eating the right foods
We all know that eating fruits and vegetables is healthy. They are healthful, to be precise.
They improve our health and easily boost our immune system.
Eat those greens
It is proven that all dark green vegetables strengthen the immune system and increase the number of antibodies in your blood.
Cruciferous vegetables such as kale, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and brussels sprouts, for instance, also improve our bowel barrier function against microorganisms, which is our first line of defense.
Just make a salad or throw some in your main dish right away!
Add some berry delight
Small berries such as blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, black currant, grapes, strawberries etc are known to be very healthy in addition to their blissful flavor.
They are rich in vitamin C and K, manganese and reduce oxidative stress. Indulge them every day for both health and happiness.
Love your mushrooms
How can we talk about boosting our immune system without mentioning mushrooms?
They have an anti-inflammatory effect and contain powerful antioxidants, which increase our immune defenses.
Diversify your meal by including all variations of mushrooms (champignon mushrooms, the Japanese Shiitake mushroom, chanterelles) in your daily meal!
Forgo those vitamin C pills
It is common knowledge that vitamin C is an immune booster. It is very important for its ability to increase the defensive power of our immune cells so that they cope easily with various viral and bacterial infections.
But why take it as a supplement? Vitamin C rich fruits and vegetables are all around us, most notably citrus fruits such as oranges, grapefruits, lemons, pomelo. Also, tomatoes and all those omnipotent greens.
Feast on beta-carotene
Beta-carotene rich vegetables are very beneficial to our body as beta-carotene is later transformed into vitamin A.
People who have high levels of vitamin A in their bodies are known to suffer less viral and bacterial infections. It stimulates our immune system making it fight better with different kinds of pathogens.
Especially rich in beta-carotene are carrots, spinach, broccoli, potatoes, whole grain foods, citrus fruits among others.
Do include as much of these foods in your diet as you can!
Use Plant Immunostimulants
Plants are all around us, nature is all around us, full of its treasures.
Echinacea is probably the most powerful plant that stimulates our immune system. It increases the defense mechanism of the cells.
Ginseng is another natural immunostimulant. It increases your energy and vitality, without any side effects.
Cat`s claw is another plant known to help our immune system deal with different kind of threats to our body. Enjoy a cup of cat’s claw tea for a better immune system.
Use essential oils
With the enormous variety of plants comes an abundance of essential oils or ethereal oils. They are in essence little drops of liquid, derived from plants. It is these oils that give flowers their scent.
Essential oils can directly stimulate the immune system, kill airborne viruses or simply have a calming effect so that you can restore your defenses.
- The ones which stimulate the immune system are eucalyptus, lavender, tea tree and bergamot oil. You can use an aroma evaporator of some kind and enrich the air at your home with their scent. By breathing it you improve the function of your immune system.
- Eucalyptus and camphor oils, anise oil, pine oil, basil oil, sage oil, ginger oil have an antiseptic effect. When you fill the air of a room with their antiseptic (antimicrobic) evaporations during the cold seasons you can decrease the risk of spreading viruses to other people at home.
- Frankincense or thyme oil have a calming effect. When rubbed in the skin camphor and cinnamon oils cause a feeling of heating of the body.
A word on the application of essential oils
Essential oils are hydrophobic – they don’t dissolve in water. When you rub them in the skin it is better to mix them with some plant oil like olive, sunflower oil, almond oil or whatever you have at home.
They are also volatile so they evaporate when heated. This is why they have such a good effect when used for aromatherapy.
There are different ways of their administration in the body, depending on the type of oil used. For example, they can be inhaled, taken by mouth or through the skin. Some of them can cause stomach discomfort when taken by mouth.