HOW TO BOOST YOUR IMMUNITY NATURALLY!
This is the time to strengthen your immunity! A healthy immune system reduces your chance of infections!
As Naturopaths, our primary focus is on prevention. So we have compiled a list of our top tips to stay healthy and boost your immune system.
BOOST YOUR IMMUNITY & STAY HEALTHY WITH OUR TOP TIPS
WASH YOUR HANDS – with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds
PROTECT OTHERS – by covering your mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, and dispose of used tissues immediately and appropriately. If you are feeling unwell, it is important to seek medical attention and also refrain from public places (i.e. self isolation).
EAT WELL – By eating a healthy diet you are fuelling your body with nutrients that support a healthy immune system. Eat plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, adequate amounts of protein (i.e. 1gram of protein per 1kg of body weight) and ensure to include plenty of good quality fats (i.e. fish, nuts, seeds, avocado, oils).
EXERCISE REGULARLY – Just as healthy eating contributes to overall health, exercise is another pillar to healthy living. However, exercising when you are sick can halt your recovery and jeopardise your immune system – so take time out when you are ill.
REDUCE STRESS – Chronic stress suppresses the immune response. We recommend establishing a healthy morning and night time routine, moderate exercise, fresh air, yoga, meditation (more on that below) and breathing exercises.
SLEEP WELL – Sleep = rejuvenation. It is important to get enough sleep for a healthy and strong immune system. If you are sick, sleep is also key, as rest helps the body to reduce inflammation and fight infection. As a general guideline, we recommend 7-9 hours sleep per night.
SUNSHINE – Despite living in Australia, it is well documented that vitamin d (the sunshine vitamin) deficiency is quite prevalent. There is extensive research on the link between vitamin D deficiency and a lowered immune system, in particular respiratory problems. Vitamin D deficiency is also very common in those who are immunocompromised / in autoimmune diseases. We suggest spending more time in the sun, as a general rule between 15-20min per day with as much skin exposed as possible and/or talking to your health care practitioner for the best supplement and dose required for you.
MUSHROOMS – Mushrooms are rich in many essential minerals and nutrients and contain therapeutic benefits when it comes to a healthy immune system and response. Mushrooms, in particular Shiitake, Reishi and Coriolus have been shown to enhance immune alertness and surveillance, provide efficient immune defence against pathogens and modulate immune system signalling for appropriate immune response.
LIMIT ALCOHOL – Excess alcohol can hinder your immune system. If you do drink, we recommend keeping it to 2-4 standard drinks in one sitting, 1-2 times per week.
GIVE UP SMOKING – Smoking is toxic and it not only dampens your immune system but smokers are also at a higher risk of respiratory infection.
MEDITATE – states of fear, anger, stress, anxiety etc. can naturally lower our immune system, where as meditation and the ability to stay calm has been shown to strengthen our immunity! We love the insight timer app – download it today and start your meditation practice. Start slow with just 5 min per day and build you practice as you feel fit.
HERBS & NUTRIENTS – This list is extensive and is depending on the persons individual circumstance. In general herbs and nutrients that support the immune system include Vitamin D, Vitamin C, Zinc, Echinacea, Elderberry, Astragalus and Andographis, alongside medicinal mushrooms such as the ones mentioned above. We suggest booking in with your holistic health care practitioner to ensure the right dose and best quality of products.
RESOURCES / HELPFUL LINKS
Vitamin D supplementation to prevent acute respiratory tract infections: systematic review and meta-analysis of individual participant data https://www.bmj.com/content/356/bmj.i6583
High-dose vitamin C treatment of new coronary pneumonia. (2020). Retrieved March 4, 2020, from http://2yuan.xjtu.edu.cn/Html/News/Articles/21774.html
New Zealand Ministry of Health
District Health Boards
New Zealand Immigration
Advice for health professionals
Alert Status and information for the public from the Australian Government: https://www.health.gov.au/…/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov…
Up to the minute map: http://who.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html…
Review of Vitamin C in Critical Care: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/…/10.1177_2050312118807615…
Orthomolecular Vitamin C: http://orthomolecular.org/resources/omns/v16n16.shtml…
Meta-analysis of ICU patients: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/…/pdf/nutrients-11-00708.pdf
Expert consensus on comprehensive treatment of coronavirus disease in Shanghai 2019. (2020). Retrieved March 4, 2020, from https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/bF2YhJKiOfe1yimBc4XwOA
Hamzelou, J. (2020). Coronavirus: What are the worst symptoms and how deadly is covid-19? Retrieved March 4, 2020, from https://www.newscientist.com/article/2235847-coronavirus-what-are-the-worst-symptoms-and-how-deadly-is-covid-19/