One of the regular topics I have discussed over my time as an herbalist and nutritionist is immunity boosting. You do NOT want to wait until you are sick to start boosting your immunity, but if the time has come that you are sick and need some help feeling better, this blog post is for you.
Natural Immunity Boosting Tips
My suggestions for immunity, Covid and when you are sick:
1. Regular doses of liposomal vitamin C and vitamin A (vit A depleted during fever) 5,000 IU of vitamin D3 and zinc. Herbalist Paul Bergner states that, "Vitamin D promotes antiviral respiratory immunity, antibacterial immunity in the airway, and reduces the secretions of inflammatory cytokines." Aka, it is a powerhouse for your immunity system and should be in one top priority grocery list items.
2. Reduce sugar/sweet intake as much as possible
3. Sunshine and the outdoors, seriously! Rest when you can, meditate when you can; pray, dance, connect with nature.
4. Lung tonics & immunomodulators - reishi mushrooms, astragalus root, lycii (goji) berries - simmer and sip these if you are able; you can also use a double extract (tincture) of reishi and a tincture of astragalus
5. Herbs that are moistening or increase mucous membrane secretions (for early stages/prevention as it is said the initial stages are dry/dry cough) - marshmallow root powder (mix with a little water and honey and take in spoonfuls as a slurry); also humidifier will help with keeping good secretions of the mucous membranes (which means body's natural defenses will be working well); astragalus (listed above) is also moistening; onion poultices or onion syrup
6. Anti-virals - thyme, garlic, licorice root, lemon balm, st. john's wort, japanese honeysuckle (the flower), sweet gum, propolis, oregano (all of these, tincture or tea); elderberry (syrup, tea, or tincture -- go easy on the syrup as pathogens do like sugars)
"Ginger, cinnamon, (high luteolin foods to inhibit furin cleavage: yellow foods, thyme is really high, peppermint, oregano, radicchio). Furin cleavage, it's been established through testing in Germany and China already is the way this virus is cleaving to cells making it 1,000x more virulent than previous SARS CoV." ~ herbalist John Slattery
7. Alteratives (remember alteratives are all about waste out, nutrition into the tissues and cells) - red clover (also a good expectorant, drink as a tea), burdock root (simmered and then sipped)
8. Diaphoretics - elderflower, peppermint, yarrow to release heat from the fever (each herb is fine on its own, but equal parts as tea is great, too; yarrow is bitter so not easy for most people to drink); as well, culinary sage and hummingbird sage (for those local to the central coast), both served steeped in hot water.
9. If you contract the virus - warming expectorants to help the sticky phlegm move out of the lungs - pleurisy root, osha, elecampagne are probably the most specific; add horehound to any of these warming herbs to further help thin mucous and move it out of lungs.
As an herbalist, I realize our community is still getting insight into the nature of the virus and how it presents, I will update this as we all learn more. Herbalists do not see themselves as medical personnel, rather we see ourselves as community support.
With love and immunity,