Help For the Flu Season
Flu season is almost upon us and now is the time to start taking defensive measures. Flu shots are available and many people will take advantage of them, but for a variety of reasons, many people won't and some who do will come down sick anyway. That's because there's only so much medicine can do for us. Our first defense is our own immune system. This winter, Michael is suggesting 4 specific different immune system boosters to help you stay healthy enough to stave off a bug:
1) Garlic - Garlic is a known anti-bacterial, anti-viral agent. It's active ingredient is allicin. One large 12-week study found that a daily garlic supplement reduced the number of colds by 63% compared to a placebo. The duration of cold symptoms from colds that were caught was reduced by 70%. Garlic has also been proven to reduce cholesterol and high blood pressure. You can eat raw garlic (a couple of cloves/day if you like it or take a garlic capsule.
2) Olive leaf - Olive leaf contains oleuropein, an anti-inflammatory that boosts the immune system. It also has been proven to reduce cholesterol and high blood pressure as well balancing blood sugar.
3) Elderberry extract - the University of Maryland medical center states that: "chemicals in elder flower and berries may help reduce swelling in mucous membranes, such as the sinuses, and help relieve nasal congestion. Elder may have anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and anticancer properties. Elderberry may help treat cold and flu symptoms by reducing congestion and possibly making you sweat more. One study suggested that using a standardized elderberry extract, Sambucol, could shorten the duration of flu by about 3 days."
4) Oregano Oil - Oregano oil is high in phenols, which are natural phytochemical compounds with beneficial antioxidant effects. The two most abundant phenols in it are:
a) Thymol - a natural fungicide with antiseptic properties. It helps boost your immune system, works as a shield against toxins, and even helps prevent tissue damage and encourages healing.
b) Carvacrol – found to be effective against various bacterial infections, such as candida albicans, staphylococcus, E. coli, campylobacter, salmonella, klebsiella, the aspergillus mold, giardia, pseudomonas, and listeria.