Cold + Flu 101

cold and flu 101

If there’s one thing I know, getting sick sucks! Cold and flu season is here, but so are some superhero products and supplements that can ward off your illness. I’m here to break down everything you need to know about stopping your cold and flu in it’s tracks. Here’s your guide to preventing and healing Cold and Flus 101.

Topher and I avoid getting the flu shot, and unless absolutely necessary, I advise my clients to avoid the flu shot as well. The Centre for Disease Control has said that the flu shot is less effective the more often (more years you take it). The body builds up resilience to viruses, that’s the benefit of getting sick. The issue with something like the flu shot, is it suppresses the immune system and it doesn’t allow the body to build up that resilience. The flu shot also has mercury in it, which is used as a preservative, but mercury can accumulate in the body and displace nutrients as well as being a neurotoxin. In pregnant women, mercury can also affect the baby, having a much smaller body, mercury accumulation happens with much less mercury as compared to adults and can cause developmental issues.

These tips and tricks will help you prevent getting sick and also help you if you get sick. Here’s everything you need to know to prevent and heal colds and flus.

cold and flu 101

Prevention

One of my top tips for preventing cold and flus is listening to your body. Resting when your tired, slowing down before you run yourself ragged, and practicing self-care, daily. This is a different idea, self-care has been hyped up to be an all-day adventure, reserved for Sundays, at least it is on social media. I believe that on a daily basis, we need to be practicing self-care. This doesn’t have to be a big deal, but trying to incorporate something that lets you relax, unwind, and something that brings you joy, on a daily basis can be the difference between getting sick and not getting sick. For me, I practice self care daily in the morning, I make a cup of coffee or bulletproof coffee, and sit and enjoy it. In the evening, I start getting ready for bed early, so that my routine isn’t rushed. I take my time washing my face, reading in bed, and then turning the light off. Even just going to bed earlier, and at a consistent time, is an amazing way to practice self-care.

cold and flu 101

My second tip for boosting your immune system to prevent getting sick is supporting a healthy gut! A huge portion of your immune system resides in the gut, I’m looking at you microbiome. In order for you to optimize your immune system, you also have to optimize your microbiome, or the good bacteria that live in the large intestine. To feed those good bugs, it’s important to take a probiotic or consume at least 1 tablespoon of fermented foods daily. Fermented foods include: sauerkraut, yogurt, kimchi, and picked veggies. You can also help your gut by sipping on bone broth, or incorporating bone broth into your cooking and meals. Bone broth is high in minerals and collagen, both of which support a healthy gut lining and lessen inflammation.

Vitamin D, vitamin C, and zinc are also incredible for supporting the immune system. in North America we are chronically deficient in vitamin D, even in the summer when the sun is at its strongest! Vitamin D, although a vitamin, acts more like a hormone in the body and has so many functions from immunity to thyroid health and even bone and brain health. To see more of my favourite immunity boosting supplements and tips, head over to read this post.

cold and flu 101

Nip Your Cold + Flu in the Bud

I also love using herbs and supplements to prevent and to react to colds and flus. One company that I love and use all the time is St. Francis Herb Farm. They have specific formulas for everything under the sun, including, you guessed it, colds and flus!

One supplement, which I love, is Deep Immune. Just like it sounds, it is an immune system superhero. It strengthens the immune system using a blend of amazingly powerful herbs. The common thread between all the herbs in this formulation is that they are “adaptogens”. Adaptogens are known and used for modulating the Central Nervous System and stress! If you want to read more about adaptogens, you check out this post. 

You can get Deep Immune in either capsules or a tincture. The herbs they’ve included in this formula are so functional and foundational to the body and immune system. St. Francis does an incredible job at blending eastern and western medicine together, as well as using different modalities like Traditional Chinese Medicine in their research to get you the BEST and most effective product.

cold and flu 101

Superstar Herbs

Astragalus:
• used in traditional Chinese medicine as a protector against mental and physiological stress
• an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-viral rich adaptogen which helps the body adapt to stress
* immune system booster, astragalus has been shown to control T-helper cells 1 and 2, which means it regulates the immune response
• contains a compound called saponins which are known for lowering cholesterol and improve immune system function

Eleuthero;
• is known to lower fatigue and increase immunity and longevity
• is an adaptogen
• has been shown to weaken pathogens and inhibit virus cell replication
• is an antioxidant with neuro-protective properties
• studies have shown that eleuthero has a positive effect on blood sugar even increasing insulin sensitivity

Licorice:
• is an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant rich adaptogen
• contains three compounds, coumarins and stilbenoids which act as natural antibiotics and the third compound triterpenoid which has anti-viral properties and is known to strengthen the immune system
• this herb is also an expectorant, which in herbal medicine means it helps to loosen + expel mucous that coughing is trying to eliminate
• demulcent: which in herbal medicine means it is soothing and can offer relief to an irritated sore throat

Reishi:
• is commonly referred to as the “Queen Healer”
• has been shown to improve liver function and support detoxification
• studies have shown that reishi is also neuro-protective, being effective in cases of parkinson’s, alzheimers, and even concussions and brain injuries
• increases white blood cell count boosting the immune system and lowers inflammation

cold and flu 101

I firmly believe that sometimes we get sick because our bodies need rest and our immune systems need to regenerate. Getting sick once a year is completely normal, getting sick all the time or being down for the count for days is not normal. Regardless, using supplements like Deep Immune, practicing self-care and improving our gut health are key for both preventing and getting over colds and flus quickly and relatively painlessly.

I’d love to know your favourite tips for cold and flu, let me know in the comments!

This post is sponsored by St. Francis Herb Farm. All opinions, as always, are my own. 

 

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