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An Optimized Immune System -A Great Strategy to Protect Against All Viruses .

immune-system-graphic

Here’s the question you should be asking yourself:

A person with the flu walks into a room of 14 kids, licks his hand and then shoves his hand in EVERY kid’s mouth (yes, gross…I know, but stay with me…). 7 kids get sick, and the other 7 are fine. If germs are lethal, then EVERYONE should have gotten sick, CORRECT? Correct! But that’s not what happens.

Immunity is what matters. So ask yourself…what controls and monitors your immune system?

Many factors like rest,adaptability to stress,nutrition,exercise, nervous system function.

Some Natural Tips that have been shown to help provide immune system protection.

First the obvious,Wash hands frequently, especially before eating or touching your face. Washing hands with warm soap and water for at least 30 seconds is the best option. One study found that washing hands even with plain running water without soap was more effective than ethanol-based hand disinfectants at killing the Influenza A virus.

  • Load up on foods and spices with antiviral properties. These include coconut oil, raw garlic, oregano, ginger, kimchi and other fermented foods, walnut, pomegranate, green tea, apple cider vinegar, and medicinal mushrooms (shiitake, maitake, reishi, cordyceps, turkeytail).
  • Eat lots of colorful fruits and vegetables. They are full of antioxidants which will destroy the free radicals that weaken our immune system and are responsible for making us feel sick when we catch a bug. Each color provides different antioxidant power – so be sure to eat a rainbow everyday. If you’re kids aren’t the hugest vegetable eaters yet, give them their antioxidant dose with a smoothie packed with fruits AND veggies, use that smoothie to make jello with grass-fed gelatin or popsicles, sneak pureed vegetables into your spaghtetti sauce, soups, chilis, or whatever other way you can think of – be creative!
  • Stay well-hydrated. Stick to water, coconut water, herbal teas, and bone broth. No soda or sugary drinks, please! What’s a good estimate for how much water you need at a minimum? Divide your body weight (in pounds) in half and drink that number in ounces! Are you come close?
  • Drink your bone broth! Bone broth has amazing immune-supporting properties.
  • Eat fermented foods. The probiotics contained in fermented foods have tremendous immune boosting powers. In fact, the fermented Korean cabbage, kimchi, was found to have significant effects in preventing and fighting the H1N1 influenza virus! Other examples of delicious fermented foods to try include sauerkraut, pickles , miso, kefir, and kombucha.
  • Avoid simple sugars and processed/junk food. Did you know that your blood shows lab evidence of a lowered immune system within 30 minutes of eating simple sugars (like glucose, refined sugar, and fructose), and causes a 50% reduction in your white blood cells’ abilities to kill germs? White blood cells are our “army” cells that fight off germs. This effect is most noticeable 2 hours after ingestion, but is still present 5 hours later! Keeping blood sugar levels healthy has been shown to improve immune system activity.
  • Get fresh air and moderate daily exercise. Moderate exercise can boost the production of macrophages, the kind of white blood cells that “eat” bacteria and viruses. However, intense exercise can actually temporarily decrease immune function – so don’t overdo it!
  • Get adequate sleep. An increase in sleep actually increases the number of your white blood cells. On the other hand, loss of sleep even for a few hours at night, increases inflammation in our body which makes us more susceptible to catching the flu and having more severe symptoms. So make sure your whole family is getting enough zzzz’s.
  • Minimize stress. Emotional stress creates physiological stress in our bodies that lowers our immune defences and makes us more vulnerable to illness. Stress has been shown to lower our white blood cells’ abilities to kill germs, and actually creates more inflammation that may make us feel even sicker.
  • Some added recommendations to improve the immune system function are
    • Fish oil – Omega-3 essential fatty acids have a host of immune benefits too long to list!
    • Probiotics – One study showed a dramatic reduction in fever and upper respiratory symptoms in children who took a probiotic with a specific combination of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium daily throughout the cold and flu season. This particular combination of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium can be found in Metagenics Ultra Flora Children’s Chewable probiotic, Ultra Flora Synergy powder, and Ultra Flora Balance capsules. The recommended dosage for children and adults is ¼ tsp 2x/day, 1 capsule 2x/day, or 1 chew 2x/day. Probiotics are why fermented foods pack such a punch, so if your child’s palate hasn’t expanded yet to include a lot of fermented foods, be sure to give her a probiotic supplement to keep her gut and immune system healthy!
    • Vitamin C – Naturally, the KEY is to prevent ANY virus from binding to your healthy cells. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant which assists our ability to ward off and deal with infection.  Vitamin C has been shown to reduce the risk of sepsis too.
    • Vitamin D3 – There is speculation that rates of illness increase over the winter because of the widespread deficiency of Vitamin D. As mentioned above, Vitamin D deficiency may be one of the risk factors for sepsis. Studies have shown that people supplemented with adequate levels of Vitamin D3 during the cold and flu season had significantly lower rates of infection. Vitamin D3 increases our body’s production of cathelicidin, an antimicrobial compound, to help fight viral and bacterial infections, that I discussed above in the section on sepsis. The Vitamin D Council recommends a maintenance dosage of 1000IU of Vitamin D3 per 25 pounds of body weight (the dosage may be higher in people with Vitamin D deficiency, which is epidemic and can be measured through an easy blood test). **Vitamin D3 is one of the supplements that I am most committed to giving to my kids.**
    • Zinc – Zinc is required for the normal functioning of white blood cells. Supplementing with just 15mg of zinc per day in adults has been found to improve our immune cells’ ability to ward off infection.

 

I hope you found this helpful and beneficial. Knowledge is power and ,now hopefully you are more knowledgable . Obviously I am not recommending you do this ,instead of visiting your health care practitioner in times of illness. Just bringing to light what things you can do to help yourself!

What things do you do to keep healthy?

 

 

In Health

Dr. Kahlid Mankal B.Sc.,D.C.

 

2 Join the Conversation

  1. Darla Willbond says
    Mar 15, 2020 at 5:59 PM

    Darla...thanks good info and a good reminder for us all

    • livelifefully@rogers.com says
      Mar 18, 2020 at 9:51 AM

      I am glad you found it helpful, and hope your well Darla! Dr.Mankal

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