Natural Ways to Support your immune system

essential oils, self-care

March 17, 2020

Alisha Galbraith

Shit is crazy right now…and a lot of people are hyper-aware about their health right now and natural ways to support your immune system. But what if I told you–supporting your immune system is a daily self-care practice?

First, it’s important to recognize that your body is a strong and capable healing machine. Your body was given natural defense systems to keep you well–but we also have natural ways to help our immune system when we’re under a lot of stress.

So like pretty much everything, we need to start at the ROOTS and in this case, from the inside, out:

Natural ways to support your GUT health:

  • 70-80% of your immune system is located in the gut. So your foundation for a healthy immune system is going to be YOUR GUT.
  • high-quality probiotic with a prebiotic- you can also increase your intake of fermented foods, yogurts with probiotics, etc
  • Bone broth is also great
  • reduce inflammatory to you foods
  •  increase fiber
  • increase water–stay hydrated friends

How to get better sleep

A lack of sleep makes you more susceptible to illness. WebMD, “Studies show that people who don’t get quality sleep or enough sleep are more likely to get sick after being exposed to a virus, such as a common cold virus.”

And people always ask like, “What oils will help me sleep?” but the more important question to ask is “Why aren’t you sleeping in the first place?” Again, we need to get to the root. So are you:

  • Drinking too much caffeine? For MOST ppl, caffeine is a stimulant and it stays in your body for 6-8 hrs. So if you’re having an afternoon cup and having a hard time sleeping, maybe eliminate that. 
  • Spending too much time on screens before bed? This can make it harder to sleep. Put your phone on Do Not Disturb after a certain time. 
  • Stimulating the brain? Maybe you’re staying up late, pushing past when you normally get tired to study. Try listening to your body and going to sleep when your body FIRST says HEY I’M TIRED. 

For getting better sleep: 

  • Create a bedtime ritual
    • Choose three things you always do before bed to signal your brain like, hey, we’re getting ready for bed. 
    • Aside from my skincare routine, I turn on my salt lamp, put calming oils in my diffuser (right now it’s breathe + white grapefruit), take a Serenity softgel (calming EO blend), a drop of our protective blend, On Guard under my tongue, and then I journal for five minutes–one way I felt accomplished, satisfied, free, independent, and my whole self, then 10 things I’m grateful for. 
      • This is helpful for those of you who work late nights or night shifts
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Some tips for reducing stress

When we’re constantly stressed, our immune system has a harder time fighting off environmental triggers. So here are a few ways to help bring your body back to baseline: 

  • Get outside in nature: NATURE IS SO UNDERRATED. even just five minutes of being in OR EVEN WATCHING nature on a SCREEN can bring you back to baseline
  • Regular time in nature can also boost your immune cells
    • There was a study done by Qing Li; he took some biz men on a 3-day trip to the woods and they went hiking every morning for a couple of hours. 
    • At the end of the three days, their white blood cells had increased by 40%
    • A month later the count was still 15% higher than when they started the study
  • Essential oils can also help–
    • The same guy was like, ‘hmmmm I wonder if it’s the “volatile aromatic compounds” [aka “essential oils”] that boost the immune cells.’
    • So he did another study diffusing cypress EO for just a few nights–at the end of the three days, those who diffused cypress at night had a 20% increase in their immune cells. 
  • Use: tree oils, earthy oils, and citrus oils. 

Movement for your immune health

Regular movement and exercise slows down your body’s release of cortisol (the stress hormone) and helps the lymphatic system function more efficiently, which is key in supporting your immune system.

  • Go for a walk after lunch or after dinner
  • Go to the gym if you love it
  • Do a yoga
  • Dance party in your kitchen
  • Stand while you work instead of sitting
  • Do a couple of pushups, etc

Your environment

  • Cleanse your space and I don’t just mean smudge it, but do that too–but actually CLEAN YOUR SPACE. Spring is coming; open the windows, put on some jams, and do a cleanse. 
  • Check your cleaners: MOST household cleaners aren’t great for you
    • Bleach: reduces immune function when inhaled
    • Other cleaners: irritate lungs (link below), some products are considered pesticides
  • Also important to evaluate your emotional environment

YOUR ROUTINE + MY ROUTINE

Everyone’s self-care wellness routine is going to look different, but you should have a plan for your gut, a plan for better sleep and reducing stress, as well as movement and exercise. 

This is what mine looks like right now:

  • My morning supplements change seasonally but for now
    • Hormone support
    • Adaptiv
    • Tumeric duo
    • Probiotic ten days
    • Blend for stress (using In Tune lately, adaptiv is also good)
  • Night (for sleep)
  • Gym 4-5x wk (right now I am social distancing, so I am not going to the gym and instead doing mini home workouts)
  • Cleaning schedule so I don’t get overwhelmed
Shit is crazy right now...and a lot of people are hyper-aware about their health right now and natural ways to support your immune system. But what if I told you--supporting your immune system is a daily self-care practice?
First, it's important to recognize that your body is a strong and capable healing machine. Your body was given natural defense systems to keep you well--but we also have natural ways to help our immune system when we're under a lot of stress.

So like pretty much everything, we need to start at the ROOTS and in this case, from the inside, out:

Sources: