Top Tips to Boost Your Immune System
Author: Jillian Foster Date Posted:13 August 2019
Top tips to boost your immune system
- Keep your diet in check –
- Minimise low nutrient foods like junk food and instead pile your plate high with nutrient dense wholefoods (fresh fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds, lean meat and fish).
- Include protein (lean red meat, chicken, fish, eggs, legumes, nuts and seeds); carbohydrates (fresh fruits & veggies, wholegrains like brown rice, oats, buckwheat, spelt and rye); and fats (olive oil, coconut oil, avocado, oily fish, nuts, seeds, full fat Greek yoghurt).
- Lifestyle influences –
- Excessive alcohol consumption will deplete the body of essential nutrients.
- All work and no play will impact your immune system so try to limit stress and take a break now and then.
- Exercise benefits the lymphatic system which feeds directly into the immune system, plus it can help clear nasty bugs from the lungs and airways.
- Try some herbal medicine –
- Echinacea – modulates the immune system. It is commonly used to provide resistance to infections, particularly in the upper respiratory tract.
- Medicinal mushrooms – proficient at modulating the immune system and fighting infections. The top immune mushrooms are reishi, shiitake, cordyceps, turkey tail, chaga, lion’s mane and maitake.
- YEP tea – a traditional tea containing yarrow, elderflower and peppermint. It works to help reduce the duration and severity of a cold or flu.
- Top nutrients –
- Environmental factors –
- High pollution and exposure to chemicals and toxins can deplete the immune system and irritate the airways. Try to minimise these and look at de-toxing your home.
- Fresh air and sunshine are very cleansing and can go a long way in strengthening the immune system.
Super Immune Boosting Chicken Soup!
Now we’re in the full swing of cold and flu season, it’s a good time to nourish yourself and your family with our immune boosting chicken soup. Science has backed the traditional use of chicken soup for supporting your immune system.
It's easy, tasty and full of so much goodness. Ingredients like shitake mushrooms, onion, garlic, ginger and fresh herbs will all work to help your immune system fight infections. The gelatin and amino acids from the chicken will give it an extra boost.
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 kg chicken legs
- 1 large onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 ltr chicken stock
- 1 bunch of fresh herbs, chopped (tarragon, thyme, parsley, oregano, basil - whatever you like or have in the garden)
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger, finely chopped or grated
- 4 stalks kale, chopped (remove stems and discard first)
- 2 carrots, chopped
- 2 zucchinis, chopped
- 1 capsicum, diced
- 200g pumpkin, diced
- 200g shitake mushrooms, halved
- Heat a large saucepan or stock pot on a medium heat and add coconut oil
- Cook onion, garlic and chicken legs for 3-5 minutes until skin on chicken is lightly browned
- Add ginger, fresh herbs and chicken stock and bring to boil
- Add remaining ingredients and cook for 15 minutes
- Lower the heat and allow to simmer for 4 hours, until the chicken falls off the bone
- Remove any chicken bones / skin / cartilage before serving
- Serve with sourdough bread or enjoy on its own
- Add some quinoa to increase the protein content
- Use silverbeet instead of kale
- Add any veggies you want, especially if you need to clean out the fridge
This is great to do on the weekend when you have the afternoon to spend at home whilst it simmers. Alternatively, you can use a slow cooker and cook on low for 4 hours
|Written by Jillian Foster|
Jillian (BHSc Naturopathy) is a qualified naturopath who believes through a healthy and balanced diet and lifestyle, we have the power to influence our health and the health of future generations. With a passion for herbal medicine, Jillian loves helping people find the right solution for their health needs and educating people on how they can lead a healthy and happy life.
Jillian enjoys keeping active with her two young children and baking them delicious and healthy treats.