Simple Immune Hacks

Immune System Hacks

It would be an understatement to say it’s been quite a month. The world is very different from a few weeks ago when I wrote my last newsletter, that’s for sure.

I hope everyone is doing okay. If there is any positive in this, it might be that some of us have more time to slow down and focus on our wellbeing. Although I’m finding “home schooling” a 6 year old isn’t leaving me with a whole heap of spare time!  He’s loved his first week at home. The challenge will be to make sure the parents stay patient to last what looks like quite a long course.

In between spelling and maths apps, the menace of the coronavirus has focused my mind on re prioritising the simple daily health basics that can often get neglected.

Here are 3 simple, quick and effective things you can do right now to support your immune system:

  • Tumeric
  • Hydration
  • Breathing

THREE IMMUNE SYSTEM HACKS

TUMERIC

Add turmeric to your food. The active ingredient of turmeric, curcumin has been extensively studied.  It is a super powerful antioxidant and anti inflammatory agent and is thought to have anti viral properties. Probably why many turmeric supplements are out of stock at the moment!

You will be familiar with turmeric as the main ingredient of curries. It provides the deep orange/yellow colour. Here are a couple of alternative ways to use turmeric that don’t involve curry!

These tasty turmeric chicken nuggets are simple to make with only 4 ingredients and are gluten free. Ideal for kids too!

Or why not treat yourself to a warming golden turmeric latte which contains a comforting blend of ginger, coconut milk and honey with a spicy kick from the turmeric. Incidentally I’m also a great fan of Pukka’s Turmeric Gold tea bags, currently available from Holland and Barrett online. Don’t forget fresh ginger tea too, that I wrote about a few months ago.

If you want to experiment further with turmeric, it goes particularly well with onions, fresh coriander and lemon or lime juice. You can add in live natural yoghurt to make a great marinade for fish or chicken or eggs. You can also add a few spoons of mayonnaise (ideally a healthier mayonnaise such as Meridian, Plamil or Farrington).

Adding black pepper with turmeric when cooking, helps the absorption of turmeric in your body. Add turmeric separately rather than using ready blended curry powders which won’t contain as much.

Turmeric added to food is very safe. In capsules it is more concentrated and there are some contraindications with medications, particularly those relating to the heart.

HYDRATION

Make sure you hit your 2 litres of water every single day. Hydration is so basic but SO important for a well functioning immune system and can fall down the priority list. Drinking enough water ensures your body can efficiently operate its self cleaning processes and therefore be more disease resistant. The opposite is a backed up system, a bit like a car with a blocked exhaust pipe. So as well as washing your hands, don’t forget to wash your insides!

BREATHING

Take a few 5 minute breaks in the day to breathe. Controlled or mindful breathing switches your nervous system into relaxation mode. Cortisol is lowered, blood flow improved and the immune system is strengthened. Studies have proved it. Breathing is a natural and free drug with amazing health benefits but is often neglected.

I like box breathing and there are many breathing exercises to choose from on youtube. On the subject of youtube, 30 Days of Yoga with Adrienne is great free yoga in 30 minute sessions.