FULL DISCLOSURE ALERT!!!!! So I started this blog on Tuesday and it is now Sunday and I am finally getting the chance to finish it (don't judge me I know!!). So while I stared this blog post feeling fantastic, by Wednesday morning I was feeling anything but and today I am finally on the mend. How fitting to get the dreaded cold virus in the middle of this post. So while preventative measures don't make anybody immune, they sure can help shorten the duration and intensity of your sickness as they have helped with mine.
Nobody wants to be sick, that is a given. And sadly this is the time of year where viruses are running the world and you can't talk to anybody without hearing that they have the dreaded cold or flu, or their parent, friend, son's teacher, grandmother, you name it does. So how can we take some preventative steps to help support our immune systems and help make our bodies more resistant? Here are my top 4 favorite preventative products that I use to help support my immune system and should I fall prey to January's bug of the month, (EDIT YUP!! I DID), they also couple as part of my go to home remedies to shorten the duration of the virus.
Ok. Let's talk about the obvious, plenty of rest (sleep is the only time the body truly is able to rejuvenate and repair), plenty of water (which continually helps our systems of elimination to flush out toxins including viruses), and skipping the hand sanitizer and washing your hands the good old fashioned way often and thoroughly throughout the day and especially after being in public spaces and touching things like debit machines, door handles, gas pumps and shopping carts where germs thrive and live like they are in one happy commune waiting to make your body their next dream destination.
1. Elderberry. Elderberries have both antibacterial and anti-infectious qualities and starting in September I take it every day (and I don't stop taking it until at least May) to help ward off cold and flu viruses. And if and when that virus hits (like it did this week), I increase my consumption and even add pure organic elderberry juice to my regimen. Elderberry syrup contains active ingredients (bioflavonoids like anthocyanins, to be exact) that soothe inflammation and help with sore throat and cough. It is also an expectorant and clear out phlegm. I get mine locally made by a The Elderberry Fairy (and she literally saved my life Friday morning with a brand new supply to help me get better fast)! Her products are made with quality ingredients and care and are fabulous. Check her out here: http://www.theelderberryfairy.com/
2. Oil of Oregano. It's as potent as it is effective. I turn to oil of oregano in times when I feel that something is coming on and continue to take it 3 times daily and for the most part, my body fights the virus before I get sick. This is because research studies have shown oil of oregano to be as effective as, and even MORE effective than some prescription drugs. It's antibiotic properties are endless. A good quality oil should come from drier, high mountain areas surrounding the Mediterranean including Turkey and Syria and always be organic. Drop your desired dosage into a small amount of pure juice and shoot it down. When the cold strikes, I take this oil 5 times a day and carry through a good 4 days after my symptoms have left. My personal go to is 100% wild Joy of the Mountains Oil of Oregano available at most health food stores or online. https://www.amazon.ca/100-Wild-Organic-Oregano-Oil/dp/B008RBPYXM/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1547400253&sr=8-1&keywords=joy+of+the+mountains+oil+of+oregano
3. Garlic. Not only does this amazing superfood ward off vampires, but it also helps with cold and flu too!! Garlic has been called "nature's miracle healer" and has been used for thousands of years medicinally being referred to as a cure all in ancient times. Scientific studies confirm that garlic helps to treat infections an is effective against bacteria, yeasts and fungi making it antibacterial, antifungal as well as an immune system enhancer. Work fresh, organic garlic into your daily meals year round (it's benefits are endless) and during cold and flu season you can also take it in supplement form. This is my favorite one a day during the winter months: http://www.allimax.ca/
4. Zinc. Never in a million years would I have thought when I relied only on over the counter and antibiotics would zinc have become my absolute best friend in times of sickness, but here we are. My close friends and family know I am a major zinc pusher the first second somebody says "my throat feels a bit scratchy" or "I feel like I am coming down with something". Zinc has been shown time and time again to support immune function. It can improve antibody response and cell mediated immunity by helping to regulate the function of white blood cells. Boosting your zinc levels can cause an increase in the production of T lymphocytes, which are super important in cell mediated immunity. Bottom line, zinc gets your immune system ready for battle. I choose to start on a zinc lozenge the moment I start to feel something possibly coming on and carry through until I feel well again (even if that's the next day and it was a false alarm). This is my absolute lozenge of choice (with so many on the market it is important to consider the amount of zinc you are getting in balance with the other ingredients used to make them like artificial colors or high sugar content). https://www.amazon.com/Quantum-TheraZinc-Elderberry-Lozenges-Gluconate/dp/B00DQSS50A
Natural health supplements are medicinal and should be treated as such. I am going on 5 years in February medication free successfully choosing to use only completely natural or homeopathic remedies and this is something that works outstanding for my life choices and my body. It is very important that before starting any kind of natural health supplement including those listed below that you first discuss them with your natural health care practitioner or doctor. The stigma still unfortunately exists that because something is natural it can be taken by anybody but the truth is natural remedies are just as medicinal as their synthetic medical counterparts and must be treated as such. Everybody, and every body is different (which is a wonderful thing) so we must always ensure a product is safe and right for us before use. Check with your health care provider today so you can start supporting your immune system during this cold and flu season.