Coronavirus: Could these natural remedies stop you from getting the deadly virus?
Coronavirus fears are growing around the world, and online searchers for ways to boost the immune system have soared. But can boosting the immune system actually prevent you from getting the virus? The immune system is largely determined by the germs we’re exposed to over a lifetime. As coronavirus (COVID-19 as its been named) is a new virus, there’s no guaranteed way to help your immune system to protect you from getting it.
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But doing things to bolster your immune system in the meantime is never a bad thing.
Pauline Cox, nutritional consultant and co-founder of Sow and Arrow and author of the upcoming book “Primal recipes for modern living” offers her top tips on what to eat to boost the immune system quickly and naturally.
Boost your vitamin C
Our immune system and natural anti-stress system rely heavily on vitamin C to function well, according to Pauline.
She said: “When the body is under stress, from an illness, emotional stress or from a fearful situation, it releases a cascade of hormones to cope with this stress.
“Vitamin C is very important in this cascade, the more stress hormones produced by the body, the more vitamin C is required. VitaminC occurs naturally as a composite of ascorbic acid and certain bioflavonoids.
“This is how we want to consume vitaminC in order to get the necessary beneficial effect.
“Bioflavonoids double the effectiveness of ascorbic acid in your body. A fantastic source of vitamin C, that is very low in sugar, high in bioflavonoids and potentially high in vitamin C is sea buckthorn juice.”
Pauline said: “Omega-3 essential fatty acids which have long been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects also have the potential to boost immunity through their effects on our white blood cells according to research from the Journal of Leukocyte Biology.
“Pauline recommends a high-quality sustainable MSC certified fish oil such as Wiley’s finest peak EPA, taking 2000mg per day for optimal health.”
Fermented foods such as sauerkraut have a fantastic immune-boosting effect on our body, revealed Pauline.
She explained: “80 percent of our immune system is house in our gastrointestinal tract.
“Good gut health is essential for our bodies natural defence system, the immune system. According to Dr Elisa Song, ‘the fermented Korean cabbage, kimchi, was found to have significant effects in preventing and fighting the H1N1 influenza virus.’ Another great reason to load on the fermented foods.”
Drink plenty of water
A simple one, but now is the time to keep our bodies hydrated, advised Pauline.
She recommended: “Ideally drink filtered or glass-bottled mineral water. Avoid the sugary canned drinks, instead drink Kombucha, herbal teas or tonics made with sparkling water, sea buckthorn and apple cider vinegar.”
A good night’s sleep helps to re-set our adrenal glands, essential for ensuring we are staying in tip-top form.
Pauline said: “Sleep is very anti-inflammatory so try and aim for at least seven to eight hours of sleep a night.”
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Eating food with anti-viral properties
Coconut oil, MCT, oil, raw garlic, ginger and medicinal mushrooms all have anti-viral properties, accoridng to Pauline.
She said: “It’s easy to incorporate coconut into your daily routing by adding MCT to your drinks or drizzling it on your salad.
“Fermented coconut yoghurt such as CoYo is an easy alternative to the dairy version.
“Raw garlic is an excellent addition to your daily meals. For those looking for an easier option, fermented garlic and dill sauerkraut is heavenly and has the added bonus of all the immune boosting gut bacteria.”
Pauline said: “Bone broth is a superfood packed with minerals, trace minerals and nutrients to boost your immune system.”
Dr Joshua Berkowitz, GP and the Medical director at IV Boost UK said airborne diseases can pose a huge threat and are particularly dangerous to individuals with weak immune systems.
He said: “With coronavirus at epidemic levels, individuals should act responsibly to reduce their risk by controlling their environment.
“Simple actions such as avoiding crowds, regularly washing hands, covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze, staying at home if symptomatic or feeling unwell and getting tested if worried about symptoms are things that everyone can do to reduce the risk and spread of diseases.
“There is no need for mass panic, just simple, sensible precautions.”
Dr Joshua’s advice on the best ways to improve one’s immunity is by adopting healthy lifestyle habits including getting plenty of sleep, eating nutritious diet, getting natural sunshine or supplementing with vitamin D, doing regular meditation or yoga, exercising daily, taking supplements such as B12, vitamin C and glutathione which has been proven to help strengthen the immune system and maintaining a healthy weight.
He added: “Things that diminish an effective immune system are emotional or physical stress and these should be actively managed.
“Gut health is also very important so taking probiotics and reducing alcohol consumption is vital.”
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