The Ultimate Guide to Immunity and Anti-Viral Nutrients
As we face a time of great challenge and transformation on our planet it’s more important than ever to support our bodies as best we can and build a strong immune system, strengthen our organs and nourish our nervous systems.
Making healthy lifestyle choices by eating nutritious foods, being mindful of what we consume, not only our foods, but also what we choose to watch and read. Enough sleep, reduced stress and the right kind of exercise are all important ways to ensure your immune system is strong and your body maintains harmony and is free of dis- ‘ease’.
The following herbs contain anti-viral and immune boosting properties: Garlic, Oregano, Ginger, Tumeric, Sage, Basil, Fennel, Lemon Balm, Peppermint, Rosemary, Echinacea, Licorice, Astragalus, Ginseng, Dandelion, Andrographis.
Try to incorporate some of the above herbs in your cooking. You can also buy them as supplements that combine a selection of them in tablet or tincture form and drink them as teas.
Elderberry (sambucus Nigra) is a potent anti-viral and immune booster. According to Healthline “In test-tube studies, elderberry extract demonstrates potent antibacterial and antiviral potential against bacterial pathogens responsible for upper respiratory tract infections and strains of influenza virus. A review of 4 randomized control studies in 180 people found that elderberry supplements significantly reduced upper respiratory symptoms caused by viral infections.”
For adults and children: Viridian Organic Elderberry Extract with Vitamin C
Elderberry extract combined with immune boosting medicinal mushrooms and nutrients: Wild Nutrition Immune Support
Propolis is a resin-like material produced by honeybees for use as a sealant in hives. It has immune-enhancing effects and may have antiviral properties as well.
Echinacea is a genus of plants in the daisy family. Certain species have been shown to improve immune health and may have antiviral effects against several respiratory viruses.
Andrographis contains andrographolide, a terpenoid compound found to have antiviral effects against respiratory disease-causing viruses.
Try: Pukka Andrographis
Olive Leaf has antiviral properties, giving it the ability to treat the common cold and dangerous viruses, including candida symptoms, meningitis, pneumonia, chronic fatigue syndrome, hepatitis B, malaria, gonorrhoea and tuberculosis. Research shows that olive leaf extracts effectively fight against a number of disease-causing microbes, including some viruses that cause influenza and other respiratory infections.
Pau D’arco is an Amazon tree with healing inner bark that can treat colds, influenza, herpes and viral stomatis. It contains quinoids that inhibit virus replication by damaging the DNA and RNA inside the viral protein that would insert itself in a healthy human cell and replicate.
Elecampane has been used for a long time by native Americans as a means to expel excess mucous that is obstructing lung function and as an immune support. Elecampane is used for lung diseases including asthma, bronchitis, and whooping cough. It is also used to prevent coughing, especially coughing caused by tuberculosis; and as an expectorant to help loosen phlegm, so it can be coughed up more easily.
Burdock regulates immune cell migration and activation. Exhibits antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Studies show that it helps to tackle chemicals that damage the body’s cells.
Try: Fushi Burdock Root
Cat’s Claw contains active ingredients that stimulate the body’s production of immune cells. Studies show that Cat’s Claw increases white blood cells production.
Calendula (Marigold) is a powerful all-purpose plant. Exhibits antimicrobial, antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties. Strengthens the immune system’s ability to fight infection.
Stinging Nettle has high levels of vitamin C, iron and antioxidant properties to support immune systems. Stimulates the production of white blood cells to fight off infections.
Liquorice Root is a soothing herb that softens the mucous membranes of the throat, lungs, and stomach. It can reduce irritation in the throat, and it also works as an expectorant.
Lungwort is a type of plant said to resemble lung tissue and has been used in a manner conducive to lung and respiratory health.
Try for a blend of lungwort, elecampane, liquorice and Mullein: Organic Pharmacy Lungwort Complex
Oregano Oil is a natural antibiotic, powerful anti-microbial and supports natural defences in the fight against bacteria, fungi, parasites and viruses. Among the compounds it contains are carvacrol and rosmarinic acid, which are natural decongestants also known to be effective fighters against histamine, thus aiding in clearing up respiration and the nasal passages.
Or contact me to order Doterra Organic Oregano oil.
Osha Root has long been notable for its ability to support respiration. It also helps boost circulation in the lungs.
Try: Helios Osha Root
Thyme is often used to prevent or treat respiratory tract infections and bacterial infection pneumonia.
Try a blend of Thyme, Ivy and Liquorice: A.Vogel Ivy Thyme Complex Drops
Tumeric is one of the best foods for your lungs thanks to its content of curcumin, the chemical that provides turmeric with its vibrant colour and impressive health benefits. Preliminary research suggests that the anti-inflammatory properties of turmeric could aid in the treatment of several respiratory conditions, including asthma, COPD, acute respiratory distress syndrome, lung injury and pulmonary fibrosis. Try this Golden Milk recipe here.
Please check for interactions and contraindications with these herbs.
Try this herbal and vitamin blend for a combination of most of the herbs I mentioned above: Source Naturals Wellness Formula
Green Tea (Camellia sinensis) contains a group of flavonoids called catechins, which appear to inhibit viral infections by blocking the enzymes that allow it to reproduce. Green tea has been known to be effective in inhibiting HIV, herpes simples and the hepatitis B virus. Green tea is brimming with antioxidants and polyphenols that can be beneficial for lung function. Green tea also contains theophylline, a powerful compound that acts as a bronchodilator to improve airway function and ease breathing difficulties.
Enter the code: immune20 at checkout for 20% discount on the Hybrid Herbs website.
Medicinal Mushrooms are potent immune boosters. Studies have identified many potential therapeutic properties of mushrooms including: Anti-bacterial, Anti-diabetic, Anti-fungal, Anti-inflammatory, Antioxidant, Anti-parasitic, Anti-tumour, Anti-viral, Hepatoprotective and Immunomodulating. Some of the best immune boosting mushrooms include: Chaga, Cordyceps, Lion’s Mane, Maitake, Oyster, Reishi, Shiitake, Turkey Tail. Tremella and Cordycep mushrooms are powerful lung enhancers. Cordyceps treats asthma. Several studies over the past decade have shown that Cordyceps helps the lungs and improves airway health.
Try a selection if medicinal mushrooms from Hybrid Herbs, including their Hybrid Herbs Medicinal Mushroom Complexfor a blend of 8 mushrooms. Enter the code: immune20 at checkout for 20% discount on the Hybrid Herbs website.
Black Seed Oil is a powerful antiviral and antibacterial remedy, with several recent studies showing that Black Seed can reduce even virulent strains of Salmonella and other bacteria that are becoming resistant to antibiotics. It is also used for respiratory conditions including asthma, allergies, cough, bronchitis, emphysema, flu, swine flu, and congestion.
Probiotics may help give your immune system and boost and inhibit the growth of harmful gut bacteria. Also, some probiotics have been shown to promote the production of natural antibodies in the body. They may also boost immune cells like the IgA-producing cells, T lymphocytes and natural killer cells. 80 percent of our immune system resides in our gut and it determines how we feel, physically and mentally. Include fermented foods like goats milk or coconut milk kefir and yogurts (cow’s milk can cause allergies and excess mucus) and kombucha.
Vitamin C increases immunity and acts like an antioxidant, reducing free radical damage and inflammation. Two of the richest food sources of vitamin C is Camu Camu and Acerola Cherry. Foods rich in vitamin C include broccoli, cantaloupe, cauliflower, kale, kiwi, orange juice, papaya, red, green or yellow pepper, sweet potato, strawberries, and tomatoes.
Vitamin D can modulate the innate and adaptive immune responses. Deficiency in vitamin D is associated with increased autoimmunity. Lower than normal blood levels of vitamin D have been linked to a greater risk of infections as well as conditions such as cystic fibrosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and interstitial lung disease. Foods richest in vitamin D include fatty fish like salmon, sardines and herring, egg yolks, chlorella, mushrooms and ghee.
B Vitamins help support cognitive functions and immune health. Vitamin B3 and vitamin B12 have been found to be low in asthma patients but are nutrients that lower antihistamine levels and reduce wheezing. Foods rich in B Vitamins include: beef, poultry, seafood, organ meats, eggs, milk, chlorella, shiitake mushrooms, avocados, sweet potatoes, broccoli, whole grains (brown rice, oats), peanuts, sunflower seeds, and chickpeas.
Try: Wild Nutrition B Complex with added ashwagandha to support the nervous system.
Zinc supports the immune system, adrenal health and aids the body in coping with stress, which has been tied to worsened asthma symptoms. Shellfish, legumes, nuts, particularly pumpkin and hemp seeds , eggs.
Lysine has antiviral effects by blocking the activity of arginine, which promotes HSV replication. May reduce anxiety by blocking stress response receptors and reducing cortisol levels.
Try: Cytoplan L-Lysine
Monolaurin is a component of coconut oil that has antimicrobial, antiviral, and antibacterial properties. According to Dr Alex Rinehart, “the mechanism of anti-viral action is a disruption of the viral envelope or lipid capsule that surrounds the virus. Viruses use this envelope to help them “roll” into cells – which is important for replicating and “activating” the virus. Monolaurin has been demonstrated to disintegrate this lipid envelope naturally. No matter the strain of the virus – if it has a viral envelope – it is vulnerable to the unique action of monolaurin.”
Sun Chlorella is a green algae that is the richest food source of chlorophyll on the planet. As one of the most nutrient dense foods it is a great wholefood multi vitamin, that includes vitamin D, B vitamins, calcium and magnesium. Sun Chlorella have conducted studies to show that it can support the immune system, is an anti-inflammatory and may help treat upper respiratory illness. It is also a prebiotic so feeds the friendly bacteria in our gut.
Try: Sun Chlorella Tablets or Powder.
Silver Nanoparticles are antiviral, antibiotic and antifungal. They have mainly been studied for their antimicrobial potential against bacteria but have also proven to be active against several types of viruses including human immunodeficiency virus, hepatitis B virus, herpes simplex virus, respiratory syncytial virus, and monkey pox virus. Click here to read Medical Biochemist and Aviation Doctor Jackie Stone explain about using Ionano Silver in a nebuliser for best results.
Salt Pipe is a natural inhaler which calms the cells lining the respiratory system and stimulates their natural cleansing mechanisms, thus reducing inflammation. Dr Myhill talks about using a salt pipe with iodine drops here.
Contact Ainsworth for bespoke homeopathic remedies to support the immune system and respiratory system.
Cut out refined sugar and avoid dairy and wheat. Sugar weakens the immune system, dairy creates mucus and wheat can cause inflammation.
Broths, Soups and Casseroles are great ways to eat lots of vegetables and for boosting the immune system. Vegetable juices with ginger and turmeric root are potent immune boosters and contain lots of micronutrients. Add superfood powders to your smoothies for instance maca, baobab, green blends (wheatgrass, barley grass, spirulina and chlorella), acai, hemp, moringa, chia, lucuma and amla.
Broccoli, broccoli sprouts, brussels sprouts and other cruciferous vegetables: These contain many antioxidants and a key compound called sulforaphane. Researchers from UCLA state, “A major advantage of sulforaphane is that it appears to increase a broad array of antioxidant enzymes, which may help the compound’s effectiveness in blocking the harmful effects of air pollution. We found a two-to-three-fold increase in antioxidant enzymes in the nasal airway cells of study participants who had eaten a preparation of broccoli sprouts. This strategy may offer protection against inflammatory processes and could lead to potential treatments for a variety of respiratory conditions.”
Apples may also help promote better lung health as well. One study published in The European Respiratory Journal reported that apples could help slow declining lung function over a 10-year period, especially for former smokers. The phytochemicals found in apples has also been shown to decrease oxidative stress and inflammation, which could potentially enhance pulmonary function.
Bananas are rich in potassium, fibre and vitamin C, bananas are a powerhouse of nutrition and can be especially beneficial when it comes to lung health. Studies show that the potassium found in bananas helps the lungs contract and expand, which can prevent breathing problems. Other research has found that bananas could preserve lung function and may even be associated with a lower risk of wheezing caused by childhood asthma.
Ginger is a potent spice that has been extensively studied for its medicinal properties, especially when it comes to lung health. It has been found to decrease lung damage and protect against inflammation.
Garlic, Onions and Mustard seeds are all considered natural antimicrobials. They may help to fight bacterial infections and improve overall immune health. They also contain the antioxidant called quercetin which inhibits inflammation.
Pineapples are tropical fruits that are rich in vitamins, enzymes and antioxidants. They may help boost the immune system. Nutrients in pineapple juice may help soothe symptoms of a cough or cold. According to Healthline, “one 2010 study found that pineapple juice was part of an effective treatment for tuberculosis, thanks to its ability to soothe the throat and dissolve mucus.”
Cacao contains both theobromine that helps to relax and protect your lungs so you can breathe deeper, especially helpful if you have asthma. Click here to read about how cacao treats virus’s and boosts the immune system.