It has been far to long since I wrote my last entry. I was very busy with business and life, then the C19 erupted and one thing after another I just didn’t feel like writing anything, till last week. This is happening due to one of my clients asking me questions about my health. How am I not getting sick? How I have managed to look after my daughter who had “C” twice, flu and I didn’t catch anything and didn’t wear mask? He said that I should write about it. I am still not sure if I should though, I mean we had subjects on immunity drummed into our heads recently on every day basis. However, I am a holistic practitioner, not scientist, so my job is to talk holistic language. You may agree or not, your prerogative, your right.
Let me tell you one thing, I will not be writing on how to protect yourself from a certain virus I dare not to name here. I have my opinion and I intend to keep it to myself. The sole purpose of this entry is to talk about immune system and what you can do to support it.
What is immune system?
In a nutshell immune system is a group of organs that protects you from an invasion of viruses, fungi, toxins and bacteria. We have 2 types of immune system:
1.Immune system we are born with (innate)
2. Immune system we develop when exposed to microbes or toxins (adaptive)
I won’t be going into description of every organ that belongs to immune system. You can find more info about it here https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK279364/.
See I was born a rather poorly child. I had vit D deficiency that caused rickets and I had anemia. I cannot tell you which type as my mother doesn’t want to or cannot remember. All I remember is me going to doctors once a week, having my tiny fingers pricked and blood taken. A very vague memories. Anyway, I remember always taking Vit D in a form of tablets. Somehow I was never a child that picked up terrible colds. Maybe once I had some chest infection as remember one of my “aunties” applying cups to my back. Saying that it’s not like we didn’t get sick, we did, just not badly.
When I became interested in my general health and started practising reflexology, it became my job and personal interest to know as much as I can about immune system, how to stay healthy and how to advise others, without infringing onto medical field. After all I am a holistic therapist not medical professional.
5 ways to strenghten your immune system
I want you to know that there are more ways, these are the things I do and advise my clients to do.
We all know how important sleep is in maintaining our sanity. When we sleep our parasymphatetic nervous system is being activated and good things are happeing; the heart slows down, adrenaline and cortisol levels go down, digestion slows down and brain has time to have rest (although judging by some of my dreams I am not entierly sure my brain ever rests properly 😉 ). It is very important to develop a good sleep hygiene/routine. My involves sleep tea from Pukka, essntial oils blend in diffuser about 20 minutes before im going to bed, my himalayan lamp, relaxing/healing frequencies music in the background. Although officialy not reccomended I HAVE TO play games on my phone-usualy puzzles or crosswords. I have a very active brain and these games help me to quite the thoughts or turn off the music that is usualy stuck in my head. Here is a link to a study that shows what effect sleep has on our T cells, if you like reading complicated medical jargon click on it and have fun 🙂 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3256323/
2. Take supplements every day.
Vitamin C, zinc and Vit D. I think I only forgot to take them once in my adult life. Every time I feel the cold is coming I double the dose of each one of them. I know we have reccomended daily dosage of each of them(plus your food that should consist of these vit) and this is why I only double up when there is a battle brewing in my body. I am actualy taking a trial under Queens Mary’s University . They are researching if taking vit D can prevent catching C19 ( or have symptoms). I have been tested by them to find out if I am low in Vit D and have C19 antibodies. Like I have mentioned before I have cared twice for my daughter with C19 and once when she had a flu. I didnt catch anything. PLEASE REMEMBER IT IS ME. YOU HAVE TO DO EVERYTHING YOU THINK IS BEST FOR YOU. THIS IS NO WAY AN ADVICE ON HOW TO BE AROUND C19!!
Here I am throwing you some link on researches regradinf these vitamins and so you dont have to type it yourself.
There is always a bottle of echinacea tablets in my cuboard. You need to take it at the first sign of ilness. In fact eachinacea has been “proven” to shorten an illness for up to 2 days and in many cases the symptoms are less severe- although these claims are being disputed. I really dont care what they say. Echinacea has always been my to go herb.
4. Eat well, with plenty of immune boosting fruit and veg.
That will be all your citrus fruit. My household favourite are lemons. We use lemons to drink for any slight sign of cough or sore throat, with big spoon of honey and very often with a splash of Apple Cider Vinegar. I have been known to make this drink for my daughter’s friends and apparently it’s “the best”.
Red peppers are always in our fridge, I add them to almost every dish I cook. On the top of being good for your immune system they are also good for your heart, skin and eyesight. Interesting facts that I didnt know till I started writing this entry : they have more vit c than lemons!!!!
Broccoli -to be honest I am the only one in my household who eats them (sometimes my daughter ). My son hates any veg. Broccoli are high in A, C and E vitamin and few other goodies.
Garlic– another one that ends up in my dishes almost every time. In case of colds I crush a clove into warm milk and honey. Not sure how it works and what’s the science behind it though but my dad was making us drink this all the time when we were running fever.
There is plenty of food that is good for your immune system and I will add link here as writing all of it will take me ages and bore you to death. https://www.healthline.com/health/food-nutrition/foods-that-boost-the-immune-system
There is one vegetable I really would like to give a credit to and it’s one and only onion. The first sign of cough or sore throat my kids ask me for onion syrup. You clice the onion, add it to sause pan, add few spoons of water and honey, good blob of honey. Leave it in a warm place. After couple of hours the onion relises juice , sweetened with honey. My kids love it and drink a spoon or 2 every couple of hours. In fact I have to keep an eye onmy daughter as she drinks to much of it.
A little disclaimer -when I say kids I mean one is 21 and other 13, so they are not so little.
5 Avoid stress
Easier said than done, I know. We cannot avoid stress but we can try to deal with it. Nowadays we have an abundance in techniques to help you to lower your stress level. My favourite of course is REFLEXOLOGY. Reflexology helps to switch on your parasymphatetic nervous sustem , it lowers your adrenaline and cortisol levels, improves your sleep and many , many more. As a reflexologist I see stressed people every day and I always tell them that reflexology alone cannot fix their problems. Staying and being healthy requires to do at least the 5 things I have mentioned above. Often I have people coming for reflexology and expecting me to “heal”them or “fix” them. How I wish it was possible.I cannot do it by myself. Take for exmple my daughter, she is 21. I try to remind her to take her vitamins, rest etc but being that age she likes to go out, sometimes to often. She also works hard and she works with little children, so there are always plenty of viruses around her. Being a young, full of fun person , her immune system often struggles with staying strong. We all been there though 😉
So there you have, all the things I do to keep me and my family healthy. I am not saying you have to do it all at once, but just wanted to give you a little pointers that can be introduced when needed. Please leave comments here if you have some other ideas or to ask me questions. I am happy to answer to the best of my abilities.