With everything going on in the world, boosting our immune system has never felt so important. It is the job of the immune system to help fight and protect us against infections and sickness. Keeping our bodies fit, healthy, and well-rested should keep them running smoothly, but did you know that herbs can help too? Read on for the best herbs for health immune support.
5 Herbs for Health & Immune Support
Goldenseal is a plant native to the United States and Canada. It is known by other names such as orange root, ground raspberry, jaundice root, and eye balm. It has been used for hundreds of years to remedy ailments such as skin disorders, eye irritations, and digestive problems. Today it is among the world's most popular herbal remedies, used for its immune system boosting properties, along with its ability to help digestive issues, sore gums, hay fever, and a range of skin ailments.
Goldenseal is so effective because it is rich in alkaloid compounds such as berberine, canadine, and hydrastine. These compounds have a diverse range of antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It is also known to promote the cleansing process of the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is the part of the immune system that flushes waste and toxins from the cells and produces and controls immune cells that destroy any foreign invaders.
Garlic is a powerful herb with antibacterial, antiviral, and antiprotozoal properties. It is effective in helping to remedy the common cold, parasites or worms found in the gut, and bacterial infections such as salmonella and E. coli. Alliin is a compound found within garlic. When broken down, it becomes allicin. Allicin has proven to boost the response of disease-fighting immune cells when they encounter viruses such as flu or the common cold.
It aids the lymphatic system by increasing blood circulation and preventing blood clots. It has also been shown to fight stress and fatigue by affecting the adrenal glands, causing them to produce fewer stress hormones. In turn, this boosts the immune system, as when the body is under stress, the immune system is weakened. Garlic also helps the body absorb zinc, a trace element that is another immunity booster. Garlic is most potent when consumed raw as heat can inactivate the sulfur enzymes.
Turmeric is a potent herb that has been utilized for thousands of years. It contains more than 300 nutrients, including curcumin, vitamin C, beta-carotene, calcium, iron, flavonoids, zinc, potassium, and many more. Curcumin is the most abundant compound found within turmeric, and it is rich in antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and wound-healing properties. It helps to bolster the immune system by regulating immune responses and stimulating antibody formation.
When consumed even at low doses, it can enhance our antibody responses to help fight off infections. Its antioxidant properties battle inflammation and cell damage, and like garlic, it can help lower cortisol levels, otherwise known as stress hormones.
Ginger may be most famous for its soothing effect on an upset stomach, but it is also great for boosting overall immunity. Studies have shown it contains compounds which have powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that help stimulate blood circulation and aid in creating a healthy digestive system.
Ginger stimulates the respiratory cells to secrete anti-viral proteins and inhibits mucous productions which helps to clear congestion. As an anti-bacterial, it can help prevent food-borne ailments and has also shown to help protect brain function, providing a higher chance in helping to prevent neurodegenerative diseases.
Capsicum (cayenne pepper) contains a host of ingredients that can help boost our immune systems. Capsicum is rich in vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that helps in the day-to-day function of our immune system. It is also used by the body to create collagen. Collagen is the body's building block for skin regeneration and healing.
Capsicum is also an abundant source of beta carotene, a form of vitamin A, otherwise known as retinol. This compound plays an important role in maintaining healthy mucus membranes, skin, and immune systems.
Best Way To Consume These Immune-Boosting Herbs?
There are many ways to reap the benefits of these herbs. Simply adding them to your cooking is one easy way, or even drinking them as tea. However, to ensure a beneficial amount, optimal digestion, and simply because it is the most convenient way, many people choose to take them in tablet or capsule form.
Most herbs can be purchased individually in a pill form. However, herbal combinations such as Common Sense Lymphatic Health - Immune System Support are in tablet form and designed to combine and utilize the most powerful herbs that aid optimal immune system efficiency. These types of supplements target specific concerns so that individuals can have peace of mind knowing they are assisting their bodies run healthily and efficiently.
Other Factors That Boost the Immune System
Herbs can do wonders for improving major functions of the human body. However, there are other factors to consider along with herbs to ensure your immune system is fighting fit and keeping you in overall good health.
• Sleep - Aim for at least six uninterrupted hours a night
• Healthy Eating – Always include whole plant foods with each meal
• Exercise – Aim for at least 20-25 minutes of moderate exercise per day
• Hydrate – Drink at least half of your body weight in ounces of water
• Manage Stress – Try Deep breathing, yoga, meditation, singing or journaling
A strong and efficient immune system is not created overnight, but by making small changes and adding the herbs talked about in this post, your immune system will grow stronger every day. To learn more about a healthy immune system and how herbs can benefit our whole body, read through our educational posts. We invite you to learn how you can help your body heal itself.