Well, I feel compelled to write another blog on this subject since it seems everyone around me is coming down with something this winter. As seasons go, winter certainly is the most challenging as far as staying well goes, and some years are worse than others it seems.
This winter appears to be especially nasty. In the clinic it’s always interesting seeing the patterns of illness in my patients as a group and over time. Also interesting is how certain illnesses manifest similarily across the population.
In November we had the cold that was minor, but left everyone with an irritating dry cough for 2 weeks after.
Since the start of January it’s been round two of a cold, but this one is putting people in bed for a couple of days with a fever, fatigue and bad cough.
Lastly, Influenza is making the rounds and picking people off left and right.
So what separates the survivors from the sickies? Here are some key lifestyle changes you can make, along with the best preventive supplements you can take. The key here is prevention, because once you’re sick there’s not a lot you can do but let your body go through it.
Lifestyle Changes for Improved Immunity
Sleep. A lack thereof is a known stressor and has ripple effects on your health. In short, lack of sleep leaves you feeling stressed and raises cortisol. Chronic elevations in cortisol suppress immune function. There are numerous reasons for poor sleep - several of which you can change.
Stress. Chronic stress releases a barrage of stress hormones that cripple your immune system. Stress will never go away, so the key is to learn to manage it. Consider counseling, meditation or regular exercise. Actually, managing stress is so important that I strongly recommend all three of these to my patients. Stress will not only make you sick in the short run, but it’ll chew you up over the long term as well. These are some of our favorite go-to’s for stress and anxiety.
Diet. Excess sugar makes your body more hospitable to the bugs. Alcohol is an anti-nutrients and weakens your defenses. A generally poor diet leaves you low in the nutrients your immune system needs to mount a strong, rapid defense. Think fresh, non processed foods and eat them at every meal. Here’s an awesome immune-boosting soup recipe!
Humor. There are so many studies looking at the positive effects of humor on health. Laughing of course has the opposite effect that stress does. It can actually lower the levels of stress hormones and stimulate other hormones that boost immunity. If you aren’t laughing, you’re not having fun! This also ties into being social – a lack of meaningful relationships and social connectedness is detrimental to immunity, much the same way stress is. Get out and go laugh!
Natural Medicines for Immunity
Now that we’ve covered the foundational aspects of immune health, here are our top three best immune boosters:
Viral Immune. Because so many winter illness are viral, rather than bacterial (and antibiotics don’t kill viruses), it’s important to use something that kills the viruses directly. Viral Immune contains some of the strongest natural anti-viral nutrients available, all in one capsule. It also contains anti-inflammatory nutrients and enzymes to remove the mess.
Monolaurin.Monolaurin is a unique compound derived from lauric acid. It also has direct anti-viral and anti-bacterial effects. We recommened taking at least two anti-microbial natural medicines to prevent illness when everyone around seems to be sick.
Try these techniques and supplements now, before you spend the winter getting sick over and over again! Stay healthy!