5 ways to fight the flu season
I love this time of year; the mornings are crisp and the days clear. As we kiss goodbye to balmy backyard BBQs and evening dips in the pool, we reluctantly welcome the dreaded flu season with blind hope that we can avoid catching this years’ strain of sickness.
Whilst avoiding all public contact, events with people or touching anything is always an option, a more realistic approach is to start preparing your immune systems to withstand the onslaught of snotty tissues, sleepless nights, coughing fits or phlegm parties. Let’s face it, there is always a workplace hero who ‘soldiers on’ to the detriment of everyone around them.
Of course, we can’t always prevent it, but here are 5 natural ways to strengthen your immune system this flu-season:
No, we’re not talking about the kind you find in Thailand! If you haven’t heard of these 5 fabulous immune boosting mushies, you really ought to get on the train because they truly are magic. Great for kids and adults to help fight regular illness (hello teachers and anyone working direct with the public!). The mushrooms have powerful immune enhancing and changing properties and do amazing things for Upper Respiratory Tract Infections and suppressing the growth of cancerous cells.
The 5 Super Mushrooms include Cordyceps sinensis, Grifola frondosa, Ganoderma lucidum, Lentinula edodes and Coriolus versicolor – it’s no wonder we include this as a core ingredient for our MKNH Immune Boost Tonic.
You can’t fight the flu without this key vitamin! Vitamin C works as a Prophylactic (meaning it helps to boost immunity to prevent illness) but it also has been shown to reduce the severity and duration of Influenza and Colds. Research suggests you must have a minimum of 250mg of Vitamin C per day (about 3 mandarins) but for adequate prevention, you need up to 2000mg a day and bump that up to 8000mg per day whilst you are ill. You simply won’t be able to eat all you need, so consistently taking a supplement can help greatly.
To give you an idea, that is equivalent to about 8 x Blackmores 1000mg Bio C tablets, 66 red capsicums or 100 mandarins or a teaspoon of highly concentrated practitioner quality Vitamin C powder per day.
You will see this ingredient all over chemist advertising during winter months and it’s for good reason! There are many different types of Echinacea on the market, however the trick is to look for the active strains. You will know you have an active strain if your tongue tingles a little when you take it (due to the active ingredient Alkamides). At MK Natural Health, we use two active strains called Echinacea angustifolia and Echinacea purpurea.
Taking a good quality active Echinacea has been proven to shorten the duration of acute Upper Respiratory Tract Infections and boosting immune cell activity to prevent infection. It’s a perfect soldier for fighting the viruses of Influenza, Herpes, Glandular Fever or Ross River Fever and is a regular addition to our immunity tonics for kids and adults.
Turmeric – Curcuma longa
The sixth Spice Girl is called Power Spice and she’s a spoon of yellowy-orange goodness. The anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, anti-oxidant power house that can reduce cholesterol and thin the blood. The active ingredient Curcumin has been shown to restore T-Cell populations (part of our immune system) which helps to resurrect immune surveillance and helps to manage fever, reduce swollen glands and soothe sore throats.
Drink it in your lattes, cook curries with it, take shots of it, add it to soups and stews… just get that golden goodness in you and enjoy making smug “Oh, I never get sick” comments to your colleagues. Better still, upload a photo on Facebook drinking a turmeric latte looking fabulous and well and totally cultured among a sea of “OMG I’m dying – send help” posts.
Astragalus – Astragalus membranaceus
Last but not least, something to keep your energy up whilst keeping all the bugs at bay (or just in case you are among the flu fallen) – Astragalus. Not only does it sound enchanting to your kids, but this winter must-have will boost your immune system while helping with lagging energy and stress levels. If you are heading into the winter season already feeling like a bag of trash, all is not lost! A few weeks of Astragalus will help protect you from infections and give those feeling run down a much-needed boost of energy to fight off the sniffles.
Of course, a good diet, regular exercise and plenty of water needs to be maintained, but add these 5 flu fighters to your diet over the next few weeks and you are well on your way to keeping you and your family protected from the inevitable cold and flu season.
If you are looking for immune system support this winter, consider purchasing one of our MKNH Immune Boost Health Tonics (it comes in two convenient sizes for individuals or families) from $70.