by Gail Bowman
Omega 3 Fish Oils and Astragalus are among the new discoveries in natural products that we can take to help protect ourselves against colds and flus, and to help us to take charge of our health.
Too many people see a drug on TV or go to their doctor for routine care and come away with a prescription for something that they may or may not need. A recent study showed that the average American aged 19 to 64 now takes nearly 12 prescription drugs! We need to learn to just say, ‘No. I’m sorry, but I am not going to take that drug without investigating the side effects and evaluating for myself if that is what I want to do.‘ The first step toward taking charge of your health is to eat right and exercise. Then you need to optimize the nutrients that have been proven to help keep you healthy.
According to a recent study by Britain’s Institute of Human Nutrition and School of Medicine, Omega 3 fatty acids from fatty fish increase the activity of phagocytes, which are cells that fight the flu by eating up bacteria. Omega 3 fish oils also contain selenium and vitamin D, which also help to protect us from viruses. Other research shows that Omega 3s increase airflow and protect your lungs from respiratory infections.
What else helps to combat colds and flus? There are many old favorites and some that are just being investigated. It is very important to do everything we can to keep our immune systems up. That includes helping ourselves to avoid the flu, but it also means lowering our overall inflammation levels, and our cardiovascular and cancer risks. It is up to each of us to do what we can to stay healthy, because this earth is not a generally healthy place to live with; increased environmental toxins, lower nutrition in our processed foods, and radically higher overall stress levels!
Yogurt or Kefir: In an article by Pure Matters, an online magazine, “Shift workers who consumed a drink containing Lactobacillus reuteri, a probiotic that appears to stimulate infection-fighting white blood cells, were 33 percent less likely to take sick days than those who took a placebo, according to an 80-day Swedish study published in Environmental Health.”
Zinc: According to Rodale Press in a recent article, “ ‘30 mg taken at the very start of a cold will shorten it by about half a day,’ says David L. Katz, MD, MPH, director of the Yale University Prevention Research Center. ”
Black Tea: According to a Harvard Study, “Drinking five cups a day for two weeks can turn your immune system’s T cells into “Hulk cells” that produce 10 times more interferon, a protein that battles cold and flu infections.”
Mushrooms: According to Paul Stamets from Fungi Perfecti, “The immune system is activated multifactorially by many components in mushrooms. Beta-glucans are just one. Other constituents include but are not limited to alpha-glucans, ergothioneines, antioxidants, anti-inflammatory sterols, lipids, glycosides, and mycoflavonoids—many of which work synergistically to optimize health.”
Garlic: According to Dr Mercola, Garlic is a potent antimicrobial that kills bacteria, viruses and fungi. Ideally this should be in fresh form, eaten raw and crushed with a spoon just before eating.
Vitamin D: Scientists have proposed that low levels of vitamin D may predispose individuals to succumbing to potentially dangerous respiratory infections.
Astragalus: This Chinese root is shown to stimulate the white blood cells that fight infection, says Prevention advisor Andrew Weil, MD. A study published in 2007 found that astragalus appears to boost immunity in mice. And a pilot study suggests that the herb may have similar effects in people.
Other things to remember: Wash your hands frequently. Eat as many organic foods as you can. You should include grass-fed organic milk, and organic eggs and locally grown organic fruits and vegetables. Use coconut oil when you are cooking. Drink plenty of fresh, pure non-chlorinated water. And, when you feel a cold coming on, eat plenty of fresh, home made chicken soup. Yes, it really does work! Chicken contains a natural amino acid called cysteine, which can thin the mucus in your lungs and make it less sticky so you can expel it more easily. (But home made is way better than canned!)
Gail Bowman has owned and operated Health Food Emporium, an online health food store that ships world wide, for 10 years. Health Food Emporium specializes in whole food supplements. Gail Bowman is also an author, and a Senior Vice President for Beyond Organic, an online source for truly organic, hormone free, green fed beef, dairy products and snacks.
No comments yet.
Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.