I posted a few Instagram Stories last week about what I do when I feel a cold coming on, and I *thought* I was in the clear and had kicked it, but then I got hit with the flu. Womp, womp. It seems like EVERYONE in Chicago has been or is sick right now, so I figured I’d share my tried-and-true tips for boosting the ol’ immune system! These things work, people. While you can’t really help getting the flu or other viruses when they’re running rampant, I’m definitely attributing these tips to me kicking the flu (strand A) pretty quickly this year! (Now if this lingering cough and congestion would GTFO, I’d be much appreciative. 🙄)
1. I swear by “Kill Shots.” Even when I’m not sick, I try to take one at least every other day to keep my body in check in the winter months. (And when I’m starting to come down with something, I’ll take, like, three a day.) I get mine at Hi-Vibe on Kinzie here in Chicago… They’re a mix of Camu Camu, Oil of Oregano, Echinacea, Ginger, Turmeric Curcumin, Black Pepper, Raw Honey, Lemon, and Green Apple. These at Hi-Vibe are the only ones I’ve found that combine *all* of these immune-boosting ingredients in one shot. They promote promote immunity, detoxification, alleviation of inflammation, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, and antiparasitic. There’s a whole lot of vitamins and minerals inside, too! They’re definitely not cheap ($6.50 per shot), so I’ve tried my hand at making these at home. See the recipe here! If you’re not into the DIY and not in Chicago, call around to some of your local juice/smoothie shops to see if they have anything similar.
(Oh, and FYI: Hi-Vibe is on Postmates!)
2. Raw garlic is like an instant boost for your immune system! When I’m feeling sick, I load up on raw garlic. (Bad for your breath, great for feeling better.) I’ve found that foods with creamy consistencies tend to mask the garlic the best, but I sometimes still have to force it down. I’ll mash an avocado with 2-3 gloves of raw minced garlic and spread the mixture on 2-3 Brown Rice Stackers. Pasta would be another good option to mask the taste a bit, but you would just have to add the raw garlic at the end! Cooking/heating the garlic changes the chemical compounds within, and it’s best for your immune system if it’s raw.
3. Water is your best friend! I start downing my bodyweight in H2O to try to flush out whatever’s swirling around inside. 100 oz per day, MINIMUM.
4. Sweat! There’s a lot of competing information out there surrounding this topic. Personally, I think there’s a fine line that you have to figure out with your own body of when a light workout and lots of sweat will help you kick something, or when it might drag you down even more. For me personally, I know it helps if I go to hot yoga or sit in a steam room on that first day or two that I’m starting to feel off. After that, I try to table my workouts and rest so I don’t wear down my body. But you don’t want to wind up dehydrated from an intense sweat sesh so you have to be extra mindful with your water intake! And make sure to get those electrolytes flowing, too.
5. Eat nutritiously! The second I’m actually sick, I start craving comfort foods, which is fine and I will give in and try to give my body some extra carbs for virus-fighting fuel, but if I’m just starting to feel off, I try to be very mindful of nutrient intake. Antioxidant-packed smoothies, anything from Ingrained (also on Postmates!), hearty soups loaded with vegetables (I love Amy’s if you’re not up for cooking!), probiotics, you name it.
Any other remedies to add to the list?! Leave them in the comments below so we can all benefit!