Simple Steps to a Fully Functioning Immune System Part 2
Foods that help to fight infection (in particular viruses) garlic, oregano, rosemary, liquorice, ginger, peppermint, basil, sage and dandelion.
Eat more fibre this means more vegetables, nuts, seeds and wholegrains. Fibre increases the amount of short chain fatty acids in the gut, these in turn help to boost macrophages which can reduce inflammation in the lungs during a flu infection[i]
Try to only focus on the positive by allowing fear to take over our system, this puts our body into fight/flight mode which in turn supresses the immune system. Even if you can focus on something positive for just 5 minutes this can help to calm the body. Another way to help switch our body out of fight/flight is to –
Breathe properly when we breathe, we use both sides of our nervous system. Breathing is the fight/flight sympathetic side, breathing out is the rest and digest parasympathetic side. If we can lengthen the outbreath this helps to keep the body calmer, suggestion in for 4 and out for 8 – also if you breathe deep into the diaphragm this helps to oxygenate the body better.
Practice gratitude research has shown that practising gratitude reduces cortisol (stress hormone) levels. In our current climate cortisol levels are likely to be raised above the norm and this can suppress our immune system. No matter how rubbish your day has been there are always things we can be grateful for.