A few days ago, I was listening to a rather long radio programme, where a group of scientists, politicians and other health officials were discussing the best measures of protection against Covid. Using the habitual language of war on the virus, lines of defense etc. the experts discussed the various rules and measures:
· Stay at home
· Wear a mask
· Keep your distance
· Wait for the vaccine
Voila, that was all they could come up with!
Not one person mentioned the many things we can and need to do, to strengthen our natural immunity, which in times of illness and an approaching winter would seem like the most natural thing to do.
(Btw, the absence of public information on strengthening our immunity, the sheer, total silence on this everywhere in the media I find worrying and questionable.)
Here, therefore, is a list of things that can strengthen our mental and physical health and support our immunity:
1. Have fun – do something enjoyable at least three times a week. Make sure you enjoy life! A single pleasurable experience can boost your immune system for up to two days.
2. Avoid sugar and artificial sweeteners – they cause inflammatory cascades. Inflammation is an immune reaction to disease-causing agents found in your system.
By robbing your body of minerals, sugar and processed food raise the acid levels of your blood, which makes it more susceptible to disease. Also, Covid 19 is an inflammatory disease, so do everything to counter inflammation in your body (deep breathing, avoid acidic foods).
3. Eat leafy green vegetables every day – they boost the health of your liver and your immune system in general: Brussels sprouts, broccoli, pak choi, kale, spring onions, parsley etc.
4. Enjoy miso soup – there is nothing like a small bowl of miso soup to alkalize your blood and your intestines, the best way to protect against pathogens!
5. Use food supplements – it can be a good idea to take a zinc supplement, vitamin D3 with K2 and vitamin C. You can take these when you feel exhausted if you are feeling a cold coming on, or for longer periods just for immune strengthening.
6. Lemon tea with freshly grated ginger – a great way to clear your lungs in case you are feeling a little low or have a cold.
7. Reduce or stop all dairy products throughout the autumn and winter – milk products congest your respiratory system, as well as your intestines. You want to keep both in great shape throughout the winter!
8. Eat cooked grains as often as possible – they ground your nervous system and elevate serotonin levels, thereby promoting immune-boosting optimism: rice, amaranth, quinoa, millet, buckwheat etc.
9. Exercise – this can be gentle exercise such as a nice walk or qi gong, as long as it makes you breathe deeply and sweat a tiny bit. The deeper you breathe and the more you sweat, the more pathogens you will eliminate from your body. Air your home and office as much as possible.
10. Keep a journal – use the fall and winter to get in touch with your inner life and write about your feelings. Purge your anger on the page, feel your sadness, experience compassion for yourself and allow yourself to dream.
11. Set a few fun and achievable goals – try to meet one goal a week, something you have been wanting to do for a long time that gives you joy!!
12. To the extent that you can, switch off the news. I know it’s important to stay informed but to ingest a daily dose of fear definitely has a negative impact on the immune system.
It goes without saying that this list is incomplete; there are many other things you can do and of course, no one is implying that these tips will provide full protection. This is to inspire with ideas that can strengthen your holistic health. I hope that these tips and ideas can support you through the coming months.