We are going though uncharted waters at the present time. I think that the best we can do is to follow the guidelines of public health messages and on our own we need to strengthen our immune systems. Shiatsu is a great way to support your immunity coupled with the following recommendations.
The importance of washing our hands has been reported from all corners of the world. Use plenty of warm water over your hands whilst rubbing them together. More water than usual is more important than the amount of soap used. If you use gels, look for 60% alcohol, as this will have antibacterial and antivirucidal activity. By the way they don’t work if your hands are greasy or heavily dirty.
Eat a colourful low-carbohydrate Mediterranean diet, rich in various coloured vegetables and fruits. This will give you the best option for receiving antioxidant and anti-inflammatory phytonutrients needed to fight infections. The more and the deeper colours you include, the more nutrients you receive. Eat the vegetables and fruits whole and with the skins as they contain fibre that feeds healthy bugs in your gut, essential to combat infection.
If you get ill, increase intake on vitamin C
It does not prevent infection but once a cold has hit, vitamin C can shorten the duration of symptoms. The immune cells need lots of vitamin C when they are working to fight infection. Take in more vitamin C at that time. A good source of vitamin C is in kiwi, orange, red peppers, spinach, grapefruit, cauliflower and Brussels’ sprouts, or take a good quality supplement.
Good quality sleep is the foundation of your whole immune system. During sleep the hormone melatonin stimulates new immune cells. Not sleeping well compromises our immune system.
Regular exercise is the key for a healthy immune system. Movement is essential for the lymphatic system which counts on movement for stimulation.
Drink plenty of Water
Hydration is really important. Many metabolic functions rely on it. If you get dehydrated, it can change the mucus layer in your respiratory tract and digestive tract that has antibodies traps and stop germs getting into your cells. By the way, coffee and tea are diuretic, they don’t count.
Echinacea, Grapefruit seed extract, Goldenseal, etc…
Natural remedies and herbs have been used throughout history by native people to overcome infections. Recently we see more scientific research and evidence that they work in particular studies.
Vitamin D and Zinc
Not enough vitamin D weakens our immune system and makes us more susceptible to disease. Called the sunshine vitamin because your body makes all it needs with enough sunlight. Most of us need to supplement particular during the winter months. Fatty fish, such as herring, sardines, salmon, tuna, egg yolks and mushrooms are rich in this vitamin.
Zinc is another important mineral we have to get in from our diet. One of its many roles is to fight infection. Food sources include red meat, shellfish, seeds, legumes and dark chocolate.
Your gut bacteria are essential to immunity. They break down your food in the digestive tract and produce post biotics that are beneficial for our immune system. It means eating more fermented foods such as kimchi, sauerkraut, kombucha and kefir, sources of good bacteria. Equally important is eating fibre foods that feed those healthy bugs and help them grow. Eating sourdough is one of the healthiest foods you can take for your microbiome and an excellent source of fermented fibre. Try to find slow-fermented breads from artisan bakers preferably made with more ancient grains such as spelt, or einkorn. Also fruit and vegetables, whole grain and legumes have gut-friendly fibres.
For thousands of years garlic has been valued for its therapeutic power. Those delicious, white bulbs contain allicin a compound well studied for its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial result. It is only released when the garlic has been broken and left to sit for a while and eaten uncooked.