My son has been sick almost every week since Christmas. First it was a double ear infection, then it was one cold after another thanks to the petri dish that is preschool. Meanwhile my husband was in bed with the flu for a week. And yes, he had a flu shot. But as for me, I’ve been perfectly healthy. Maybe it was the tuneup my immune system got from back-to-back sinus infections last year, maybe it’s because I wash my hands so often I should buy stock in Method soap, but I feel like the supplements I’m taking have played a major role in keeping me healthy. Here’s what I’m doing:
- Chamomile tea with fresh lemon and Manuka honey. My husband makes me a cup of this soothing elixir every night while I put our son to bed. The chamomile helps me wind down at the end of the day, insuring that my body will get the rest it needs. The lemon and Manuka honey work together to kill bacteria in the throat (so they never make it down into the lungs to become bronchitis), soothe irritation, and add a little extra Vitamin C. Teas can be laden with chemicals, so be sure to choose organic. I’m currently drinking Traditional Medicinals tea with Wild Cape UMF 15+ Manuka Honey.
- Probiotics. Probiotics are proven to reenforce your gut’s barrier function so bacteria can’t get into the bloodstream and make you sick, so science is firmly on my side with this one. When choosing a probiotic, look for one that guarantees the number of live active cultures at the time of dosage and lists the strains of beneficial bacteria in the ingredients. I’m currently taking Nature’s Way Primadophilus Optima.
- Black Elderberry, Astragalus, And Echinacea Tinctures. This one came straight from my GP who told me that she takes this mix of herbal tinctures as soon as she feels a tickle in her throat and never suffers for more than three days. I tried it at the first sign of the sniffles last summer and wouldn’t you know, my cold was gone by the third day. On several other occasions I’ve simply felt run down and followed the regimen for a day, only to wake up the following morning feeling great. I buy Gaia brand tinctures at Whole Foods and follow the dosing info on each bottle, administering them every 4-6 hours in hot tea. I’ve shot them straight as well, but it’s nasty. Trust me: you want to do the tea.