With the changing seasons, come changes in our bodies including our knack for catching colds and flus. Common tools like vitamin C, garlic, drinking plenty of fluids, and handwashing, are all important. Here are some other tips to ward off germs and promote immune function:
Stress wreaks havoc on us in so many ways. When faced with immediate danger, our immune system kicks into higher gear to protect us from infection. However, when we are in constant fight-or-flight mode, (ie. we’re late for work, argued with our spouse, stuck in traffic) our immune system becomes taxed and weakens, leaving us vulnerable to disease and illness.
We know how important sleep is to maintain proper functioning of body, mind and spirit. Lack of sleep creates stress on our bodies and minds, and is associated with stress related disfunction such as weaker immunity. A good night’s sleep gives the body and mind the rest it needs to regenerate and maintain optimal health and well-being.
If you do find yourself coming down with a cold or battling a flu, there’s nothing quite like homemade chicken noodle soup - it’s a miracle worker around our house!
Scientists aren’t clear why it’s so effective, but we know it provides the fluids and nutrients needed to help fight off viruses, the warm broth helps clear nasal congestion and its thought be a mild anti-inflammatory than can help ease symptoms. Personally, I believe it’s because homemade soup is made with love – something you won’t get out of a can!
My own recipe: While we do eat meat, my base is organic veggie stock, adding chicken or turkey, onion, carrots, turnip, celery, sometimes squash or sweet potato, garlic salt, thyme and parsley. Bon Apetit!
Take a break
When we feel a bug “coming on”, sometimes the best solution is to nip it in the bud. I have been able to ward something off simply by taking the day off to take care of myself. I may feel guilty for one day but it beats staying in bed for a week!
One of the reasons a yoga asana practice (postures) is so good for us is that it moves our bodies. Since the lymphatic system doesn't have its own circulation, it relies on our muscles and circulatory system to move it through the body. Gentle, low impact movements such as walking and yoga are perfect to keep our lymph flowing and strong!
EO’s have been used for centuries for their therapeutic benefits. Some common oils such as citrus (ie. bergamot, lemon, orange), clove, eucalyptus, lavender, ravensara, rosemary & tea tree oils, have a combination of properties such as being antiseptic, antiviral, anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory & immune strengthening - creating a perfect defense!
*Keep in mind that EO’s are very concentrated and should be used with caution. Please consult with an aromatherapist if you are pregnant or have any health conditions such as high/low blood pressure and epilepsy, or sensitive skin.
Clean Air Recipe: This will help to purify the air plus your house will smell amazing! If you don’t have all the oils listed, I included some alternatives that you may already have in your cupboard! Keep pot of simmering water on stove (can be kept for up to a week), replenishing water and oils when needed.
Add 5+ drops each:
• Clove bud EO (approx. 10 clove buds)
• Citrus EO (full lemon or orange sliced)
• Cinnamon Bark EO (3 pieces of cinnamon stick)
• Eucalyptus EO
• Rosemary EO
Not only will your home smell great, but the added humidity in the air will fend off viruses which apparently thrive and linger in drier environments.
Snuggle up with a cup of mint tea (the aroma itself can help with headaches and stuffy noses!) or soak in the tub with epsom salt and Lavender oil which can help to detox and fight the viruses.
Any questions regarding Essential oils? Don’t hesitate to ask!