Archive for May, 2009

How To Strengthen Your Immune System

Saturday, May 9th, 2009

The best defense is a good offense, right!  Especially, when it comes to your immune system. By practicing healthy lifestyle habits and reducing exposure to infection (offense), you can better help protect against illness (defense).

Why you get sick or not – or not?
Louis Pasteur and Antoine Bechamp were both keenly aware of the same things you and I experience every year: during the cold and flu season, some people get sick and some people don’t.

Pasteur devoted his life looking for what makes sick people sick, and Bechamp spent his looking for what keeps healthy people healthy - and how we can be like them! Both men settled their argument with the discovery that illness visits people with poor habits much more frequently than those who care for their health.

As the beast in nuture prefer to pay on the weak, so microbes prefer to wreak their havoc on people with compromised immune systems.  Even simple things can compromise our immune system, including:

  • An imbalanced diet
  • Alcohol and caffeine consumption
  • An argument with someone you love

Pasteur and Bechamp discovered, more than a century ago, that our health depends more on a healthy lifestyle than on the virulence of a microbe.

Help protect against illness
The phrase that describes our vulnerability or resistance to disease is “biological terrain.” Your genetics, your environment and, most importantly, your lifestyle make up the terrain of your health. Vigorous application of the 10 Essentials yields the healthiest, most disease-resistant terrain. Skipping even one of these principles will change your terrain and leave you vulnerable to infection.

  • A base of healthy nutrients
    Establishing a base of healthy nutrients can provide a very resilient terrain. The more dense the base is, the more disease-resistant your terrain will be. Taking a multiple vitamin and mineral supplement every day is an excellent start. Many physicians recommend an Omega-3 supplement as well. If your terrain is being remodeled by stress, you may need adaptogens to help you cope while remaining disease-resistant. Indeed, the long-term studies of adaptogens in Russia clearly demonstrated that these plants help you resist infections and speed healing.
  • Vitamin C
    Vitamin C is a favorite for protecting against and even treating viral infections. Russell Jaffe, MD, former director of the National Institutes of Health, recommends a loading dose of Vitamin C: one teaspoon of Vitamin C crystals every 15 minutes until you “flush.” By this, he means a complete bowel evacuation. After the flush, he recommends a daily serving of Vitamin C (for one month) that is equivalent to 75% of the amount it took you to flush. This should really improve your terrain!
  • Echinacea
    Echinacea is used in a similar way. Significant medical research from Germany suggests that an hourly dose of Echinacea will help reduce symptoms and may help shorten the duration of a virus infection. Taking a gram of Echinacea every hour for three days may even “abort” an infection that has already begun. Continue taking Echinacea three times daily for up to two weeks afterward to protect against a relapse.

Reduce your exposure
Here are some great recommendations for reducing your exposure to infection:

  • Wash your hands
    First, the largest contributor to infection is unwashed hands. Washing your hands with soap every few hours will reduce the chance for pathogens to gain access to your system. You should also make sure they are completely dry. Then, use the disposable towel to open the door out of the washroom. Many ugly microbes lurk on door handles – usually from people who have not properly washed and dried their hands.
  • Clean surfaces
    Next, disinfect surfaces that are shared by many people. For instance, public telephones bring you within kissing distance of hundreds or even thousands of people. Who knows what their hygiene habits were? In a typical day we may be exposed to germs from as many as 150 countries or more!
  • Reduce stress
    Reduce stress. Stress decreases the effectiveness of your immune system. Your immune system may begin to overreact or not react in time to stop an infection when you are under stress. The source of the stress really doesn’t matter. Job stress and an injury may seem like entirely different stresses to your mind but they are treated exactly the same way by your body.

Remember, building up your terrain and reducing your exposure are keys to a great offense… which will help improve your defense!

                                              Take Charge of Your Health

Learn More… The proper way to wash your hands