Be a hermit. The end.
The key to avoiding or falling ill to extended illness is a…….kick ass immune system. Hows that for scientific terms?
So what does that mean? Yes, we ARE going to come in contact with viruses, bugs, pathogens etc.. But its how our immune system handles them that’s important. Of course, please wash your hands a lot so we aren’t spreading viruses. No one loves the stomach bug or catching a cold. So yes, wash those hands.
But that’s not the point I’m trying to make here.
What we want to drive home here is what can you do to boost your immune system, or even just make sure its functioning well – AND – what can we do to make sure we aren’t unintentionally suppressing our immune system?
What suppresses our immune system? Many things. Below is a great start, but not all inclusive. Just what i feel, in my professional opinion, have the greatest impact.
Below is a list of foods, activities, actions..etc that can suppress the immune system.
SLEEP: Disrupted sleep and sleeping less than 8 hours. No – you don’t function just fine on 5 hours of sleep. I don’t think i need to elaborate on this but I promise you no supplement will ever overcome lack of sleep. Sleep is free!
SUGAR: Excess added sugar and processed sweets. So where do we draw the line for holiday treats? Its no coincidence that many people come down with a cold during and after an indulgent holiday. The problem isn’t the one serving of almond flour chocolate chip cookies. The problem here is the 3-4 consecutive days of indulgence in sweets that suppresses the immune system. I’ve done it a few times myself.
So how does sugar suppress my immune system? That’s weird right? Did you know that the chemical structure of sugar in your blood stream is so similar to vitamin C that it can be substituted for vitamin C instead and taken into the cell when what your cells were looking for was vitamin C! It’s a complicated process but the action that occurs next is key: at a blood sugar level of 120 the white blood cells ability to destroy bacteria and viruses is reduced by 75%! So if you are sick or want to avoid an extended illness the LAST thing you should consume is sugar/glucose. A blood sugar level of 120 is very easy to cause – drinking just one glass of juice can promote a blood sugar level of 120 or greater depending on how that person metabolizes the glucose at that moment. I told you it was complicated….
MOOD/BELIEFS: This is a topic for another day in and of itself. But I can’t post about the immune system without addressing a HUGE contributing factor to immune system suppression. Bitterness, fear, anger and limiting beliefs suppress the immune system. This is something I’m working on myself. If you resonate with these feelings start the process today by seeking spiritual help. Maybe you don’t even know these feelings exist in you because its been instilled in you from a very young age. I encourage you to explore spiritual healing as well as physical healing. They are indeed the same.
GUT HEALTH: When your gut is suppressed by pathogens such as bacterial imbalance, parasites, candida, h.pylori and fungus you aren’t going to be able to fight off infections and illness as well as someone who has a clean stool sheet. This is why I recommend a yearly stool sample as part of the physical. This is exactly why the stool panel is now the first panel i recommend. You are fighting an uphill battle if these bugs are using up the energy of your immune system. I can speak to this from personal experience in a future post. For now, find out whats in your gut lining. It is your first line of defense in the immune system.
TOXICITY: Toxins, especially when pushed straight into the blood stream, will suppress the immune system. This includes many things. The heavy hitters are lotions, body care products, heavy metals, preservatives, fragrances, perfumes, carcinogens, plastics…etc. This topic can seem overwhelming and expensive. Start with one thing. Start with body care products, or household cleaners. Or start by eliminating things that don’t cost a thing – THROW OUT those air fresheners and candles that are expensive and are spewing chemicals into the air.
What boosts our immune system? What can you do to PROMOTE a healthy immune system if you’ve got all the above in progress?
As mentioned above – SLEEP!
CHIROPRACTIC ADJUSTMENT – Coming soon, I will be hosting an interview with one of the areas top Chiropractors so she can explain this is greater depth. The short of it is, corrective adjustments to the spine increase white blood cell counts significantly (neutrophils).
SUPPLEMENTS – Here is the supplement line up I use for my own family during the winter months, and for some of these year-round:
Vitamin D (tested blood levels first)
Quality matters tremendously here so please feel free to contact me for recommendations. I would love to help. Don’t waste your money on junk supplements. There are plenty out there.
EXERCISE is so very wonderful for so many reasons. One in particular is that it boosts and increases the circulation of white blood cells. Exerting your body to the point of exertion lowers illness promoting stress hormones and can kill bacteria just from the increase of body temperature. How cool! And again, this is free folks!
This is already too long for most of my readers already so I’ll stop there…for now 😉
What do you do in the winter months, or any months for that matter, to boost your immune system? What do you find that works for you and your family? Please share with the community below!
Have a happy, healthy and joyful season my friends!