What Can be done to support Immunity

This article is taken from my Higher Nature herbal Account and it is help and advice on how you may want to boost your immune system. Prevention is better than cure.

There is a range of immune supporting supplements and I am sure you are aware of the most common ones, namely vitamins C, D, zinc and probiotics. However, there are also several other nutrients that are less well known but are particularly supportive of the immune system such as olive leaf extract, beta – (1,3-1,6) – D-glucans and grapefruit seed extract. 

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is widely researched in its ability to regulate the immune system and has long been used for the treatment of colds and flu. It has been found to shorten the length of a cold and in trials was shown to prevent pneumonia. A number of studies have also demonstrated its anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties. (2)

Vitamin D

Vitamin D plays a large role in the health of the body and especially in boosting immunity. As many of your clients may be deficient, especially during the winter months, supplementation is always advised for everyone. A deficiency has been implicated in immune system dysfunction and optimal doses have been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects as well as enhancing the natural substances in the body that help fight infection, according to one 2018 study. (3) The British Medical Journal also found that supplementing with Vitamin D reduced the risk of respiratory infections. (4)

Zinc

Also well known in supporting immune function, zinc helps regulate the pathways between the immune cells and is known for being both anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant as reported in Nutrients journal. (5) It plays a key role in the body and deficiency has been implicated in many illnesses. (6)

Beta – (1,3-1,6) – D-glucans

Beta – (1,3-1,6) – D-glucans is branded as Wellmune® which is derived from a proprietary blend of yeast known Saccharomyces cerevisiae, with many research studies to demonstrate its effectiveness on immunity. It works in the body by helping to prime the immune system by binding to the immune cells. This means that any pathogen is identified and killed off more quickly. A study in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition showed that supplementing with Beta – (1,3-1,6) – D-glucans can reduce the duration and severity of respiratory tract infections. (7) In addition a 2010 study also showed a reduction on both upper respiratory tract symptoms as well as an improved mood state and increased energy levels. (8) Not only do they help support the immune system but may also help with your clients suffering from higher levels of stress, especially with the current fears felt by many people at the moment.

Olive Leaf Extract

Olive leaf extract is a lesser known supplement which may also assist immune function. Oleuropein is a polyphenolic compound from the leaves of the olive tree. It is thought to have many health promoting benefits, specifically anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial activities, as reported in the Journal of Medicinal Food. (9) Another study in Scientia Pharmaceutica reviewed its pharmacological components, showing it to have anti-viral properties. (10).

Probiotics

We know that good health begins in the gut with 70% of our immune system located in the microbiome. Probiotics will provide extra support to optimise gut health and keep the immune system functioning well. A study in BioMed Research International suggested that probiotics have the ability to prevent certain pathologies and certain strains of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium play important roles in immunity by potentiating the function of natural killer cells in the body. (11)

Grapefruit Seed Extract

Grapefruit seed extract, available in liquid form to be diluted with water, is also known to have a variety of uses. A study in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine that it may be effective particularly as an anti-fungal, anti-microbial and anti-viral (12). It has also shown to be effective as a disinfectant agent against some bacteria and viruses, according to a 2019 study. (13)

Colloidal Silver

Colloidal Silver is thought to have antibacterial properties due to its silver ions which bind to the DNA of bacteria and preventing them from spreading. Before the invention of antibiotics, it was used to treat and prevent infections.

Diet and lifestyle approaches

As with all nutritional protocols, the approach has to be multi-faceted. Even though supplements are important, they work alongside the diet and lifestyle in helping your clients to stay well and maximise their immune system function. Encourage a wide range of vegetables and fruits to ensure the benefits of the vitamins and minerals they have to offer, alongside whole grains and good sources of protein, which helps provide the amino acids needed to build immune cells. It may also be helpful to include turmeric and garlic in the diet as both may have immune boosting properties.  Turmeric, specifically its compound curcumin, has been used in Eastern medicine for centuries due to its health promoting benefits. It has grown in popularity in recent years as a supplement and has been shown to play an important role in preventing and treating various illnesses, according to a 2017 study. (14) Garlic is also known to contain properties that may have a positive role on the immunity of the body. One study in the Journal of Nutrition showed that when consumed as a supplement for a 90 day period, it reduced the symptoms of cold and flu. (15)

Consumption of refined carbohydrates, sugar and alcohol should be minimal as they are highly inflammatory and can lower the body’s defences.

In terms of lifestyle, adequate rest is essential for the immune system as it gives the body time to repair so ensure your clients implement good sleep hygiene. At times like these, when stress levels tend to be high, encouraging relaxation activities and taking steps to lower stress is just as important in helping to stay well and bolster immunity.

References:

  1. The World Health Organization.
  2. Hemilä., ‘Vitamin C and Infections’. (2017) Nutrients  9(4) 339
  3. Sassi, et al., ‘Vitamin D: Nutrient, Hormone and Immunomodulator’ (2018)  Nutrients 10 (11)
  4. Martineau, et al., ‘Vitamin D supplementation to prevent acute respiratory tract infections: systematic review and meta-analysis of individual participant data’ (2017) British Medical Journal 356:i6583
  5. Wessels et al., ‘Zinc as a Gatekeeper of Immune Function’ (2017) Nutrients (9) 12
  6. Sanna et al., ‘Zinc Status and Autoimmunity: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis’ (2018) Nutrients (10) 1
  7. Dharsono et al., ‘Effects of Yeast (1,3)-(1,6)-Beta-Glucan on Severity of Upper Respiratory Tract Infections: A Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Study in Healthy Subjects’ (2019) Journal of the American College of Nutrition 38(1), 40-50
  8. Talbott et al., ‘Baker’s Yeast Beta-Glucan Supplement Reduces Upper Respiratory Symptoms and Improves Mood State in Stressed Women’ (2013) Journal of the American College of Nutrition 31 (4) 295-300
  9. Qabaha et al., ‘Oleuropein Is Responsible for the Major Anti-Inflammatory Effects of Olive Leaf Extract’ (2018) Journal of Medicinal Food 21 (3) 302-305
  10. Omar., ‘Oleuropein in Olive and its Pharmacological Effects’ (2010) Scientia Pharmaceutica 78 (2) 133-154
  11. Azad et al., ‘Immunomodulatory Effects of Probiotics on Cytokine Profiles’ (2018) BioMed Research International eCollection
  12. Heggers et al., ‘The Effectiveness of Processed Grapefruit-Seed Extract as An Antibacterial Agent: II. Mechanism of Action and In Vitro Toxicity’ (2004) The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine 8 (3)
  13. Komura et al., ‘Inhibitory Effect of Grapefruit Seed Extract (GSE) on Avian Pathogens’ (2019) Journal of Veterinary Medical Science 81(3) 466-472
  14. Kocaadam et al., ‘Curcumin, an Active Component of Turmeric (Curcuma Longa), and Its Effects on Health’ Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition 57 (13) 2889-2895
  15. Percival., ‘Aged Garlic Extract Modifies Human Immunity’ (2016) The Journal of Nutrition 146 (2) 433S-436S

Cbd infused skincare

WHAT DOES IT DO?

CBD has been studied for its relaxing, pain-relieving, and anti-anxiety properties when taken internally, but recent research has shown that it also has calming and therapeutic benefits when applied topically to the skin. It has been shown to help reduce pain and inflammation caused by inflammatory skin conditions, and may even help ease the discomfort of headaches. CBD also has potent antioxidant effects, which means it may help counteract signs of aging caused by free radicals.

THE SKIN BENEFITS OF CBD
 

CBD is chock-full of benefits to the skin so much that, dermatologists all over the world—including board-certified dermatologist, Dr. Debra Jaliman—recommend the use of CBD oil for hair and skin. “It’s rich in vitamins A, C and E,” says Dr. Jaliman. “Vitamin A stimulates the cells responsible for producing the tissue that keeps skin firm and healthy; vitamin C stimulates collagen production, and it helps to reduce signs of aging; [and] vitamin E blocks free radicals from the body [which] helps slow down the aging process,” 

On top of the benefits of CBD on aging skin, it can also benefit breakout-prone complexions. “Because acne is an inflammatory condition related to overworked sebaceous-gland. CBD can help reduce the production of sebum, which means CBD could become a future treatment for acne, particularly acne vulgaris, the most common form of acne associated with overproduction of sebum,” says Dr. Zenhausern.
CBD beauty products might also help other inflammatory-related conditions such as skin allergies, rosacea, eczema and psoriasis. “The anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties of CBD naturally help improve irritating skin conditions including rosacea, eczema and psoriasis,” Julie Winter, COO and founding partner of CBD For Life, explains.

Soothe your skin and support healingA restorative solution for all skin types including acne-prone and sensitive skin, CBD is a natural plant compound that’s been shown to help reduce inflammation and support the skin’s natural healing processes

SUMMARY OF BENEFIT OF CBD TO THE SKIN THAT MAKES YOUR SKIN LOOK YOUNGER THAN YOUR AGE

CBD helps reduce the effect of aging on the skin and gives a young look to your skin
A breaks through in a skincare line as a solution to inflammatory related skin conditions (acne vulgaris, eczema, psoriasis, rosacea skin allergi

What does CBD help you with?

Do you take CBD products? And if so what benefits are you finding with them?

Sharing your experiences can help to change the life of others.

Personally I have been taking this amazing supplement for over 2 years now. It has helped me on every level of my life. It has been a slow steady process, no rollercoaster of emotions, no side effects just a gradual decrease in pain.

The first thing I noticed was my energy gradually increased and my anxious feelings went away. I am now able to workout without getting headaches which was such a big thing as I love to work out but any sort of push up or heavy lifting would cause such pain in my neck and head. I haven’t felt that in over a year now and being able to exercise more increases energy and moods so its just an overall sense of wellbeing and positivity that I feel from CBD.

My friends, family, neighbours and clients are all having positive results from a varied set of conditions…Fibromyalgia, PMT, PMS, Pain, Arthritis, Depression, Anxiety…The list goes on.

Try CBD and let me know what you have found, it isn’t a miracle cure or may not work for everyone but it has done wonders for me and I love it because it is natural and been around for thousands of years.

Qi Gong and Alzheimers

Qigong is an ancient Chinese meditative moving exercise similar to, but more
profound, than T’ai Chi Ch’uan. Qigong has been practiced in China for thousands of
years to improve health and longevity. In China 70 million Chinese practice qigong
daily mainly for health maintenance. In China there are many qigong clinics, and in
some hospitals qigong is integrated with traditional Chinese medicine and
conventional Western medicine. The practice of qigong is divided into three main
applications: medical, spiritual and martial.

From his book (100 Simple Things you Can Do To Prevent Alzheimer’s) Jean Carper quotes the following:

As heart breaking and devastating as Alzheimer’s is, optimism is growing that we can lessen the risk and possibly save ourselves.  Experts now say that whether we develop the disease – the most common form of dementia, accounting for 60 per cent of cases – is not random or fate, nor an inevitable consequence of ageing.

More interestingly for us he quotes the following:

Researchers at the University of Washington tested the physical ability of 2,288 people aged 65 or over with no signs of dementia.  After six years, 319 had developed dementia.  Those with the best balance and walking abilities at the start of the study were three times less likely to have developed dementia as those with lower physical abilities. The good news is that practicing can dramatically improve your balance within months or even weeks.  Be sure to include exercises to maintain and improve balance in your daily routine, especially after the age of 60.  Try balancing on one foot or stand up and sit down without using your hands.  Adults of all ages should make it a goal to stand on one foot, eyes open, for at least 30 seconds.

This sounds like a very good reason to me to practice Tai Chi and Chi Kung.

 

Reflexology – Does it REALLY work??

Hell Yes….and not just because I am a reflexologist either but the only reason I became one was because it helped me with horrific Migraines every month.  Hormonal Migraines from my teens just debilitated me for a day or two each month and the pills doctors prescribed put me off taking medication again as the side effects out weighed the pain.

So I turned to Reflexology and the rest is as they say History.

What exactly is it??

There are reflex points in the feet, hands and ears link to the body’s organs, glands and  systems. When these reflex points are massaged, the body’s own self-healing begins. For example, massage of the big toe, which is linked through the energy channels to the head, can activate the body’s own healing processes to help alleviate or prevent headache. WOOHOO

foot reflexology map

 

The holistic definition of a ‘disease’ is an imbalance or a blockage in the body. So if a therapist finds sensitivity or tension in one spot of the feet or hands, it indicates an imbalance within the part of the body related to that area. Once we remove this blockage and allow the energy to flow freely, the symptoms may disappear and the body will return to a healthy and balanced state. I would not call it a medical treatment and it is not a cure in itself  – healing is something only the body can do. Rather, reflexology facilitates, helps and supports the body to heal itself. It should always be considered as a supplementary to formal medical advice and treatment for serious conditions.

 

Reflexology in the foot is the most popular treatment. I think this is because feet are normally more responsive than the palms of the hands and being larger, they make the reflex points easier to identify and the skin is more sensitive there because it’s usually covered by shoes.

BENEFITS OF REFLEXOLOGY

While there are many people who believe in the potential benefits of reflexology, there are also controversial opinions about it. Some scientists say it doesn’t work at all, while others think the opposite. It’s still neither well-documented nor researched. However, there have been several recent studies which have reported benefits and you can find links to them at the end of this article.

 

Some of the potential benefits of reflexology are:

 

Stimulation of the nervous system:

Reflexology can stimulate over 7,000 different nervous endings within a single session. As we get older and our bodies age, our nerve endings become less sensitive and reflexology can improve their function and reaction. It also opens and clears out neural pathways around the body. These pathways are like muscles and keeping them toned and active improves the connections between nerve endings and the brain.

 

Internal organ stimulation:

When you press specific pressure points, the internal organs to which they are connected through the nerve endings and meridians/energy channels are stimulated.  This means they can work more effectively.

 

Immune system improving: 

By pressing on specific pressure points, specific glands such as the tonsils, thyroid, thymus, spleen and liver are stimulated. This helps improve and balance the immune and lymphatic systems.

 

Decreasing Blood Pressure:

Blood pressure can be reduced by massaging the main hypertension reflex points relating to the  kidney/adrenal gland, lungs, head, liver, solar plex(us)  and heart.

Kidneys can’t excrete EXCESS sodium and this can cause fluid retention (edema) and raised blood pressure. The adrenal gland is known as a fight-or-flight (stress) producer. So by massaging the adrenal reflex point, it can help bring down stress levels and lower the blood pressure.

The renin-angiotensin system is a hormone system which regulates blood pressure and fluid balance. When it is overactive, it can cause a vasoconstriction and retention which can lead to hypertension. Massaging the liver reflex leads to vasodilation (dilation of the blood vessels) and a lowering of blood pressure.

The solar plexus is often called the abdominal brain, or the second brain. It is closely related to the digestive system.  In massaging the reflex point for the solar plexus, the digestive system is stimulated and helped to work better.

Lungs are responsible for the renin-angiotensin system and oxygenation of the blood. A massage of the lungs reflex points helps to lower the blood pressure.

An overactive nervous system leads to an increase in the stress responses and elevated adrenalin. Using pressure on the head/brain reflex point can help to decrease stress levels.

Proper functioning of the heart valves is very important for it to do its work of pumping blood through the body.   To keep the cardiovascular system toned and balanced, it’s really important to stimulate the heart reflex point.

 

Stimulating Digestive System:

Our body gets all the enzymes, vitamins, minerals it needs through good food and the proper working of our digestive system. By pressing and stimulating reflex points related to bowel and the digestive system, including the teeth, jaw, esophagus, stomach, liver, gallbladder, pancreas and  small and big intestines,  the overall system is helped to work properly and in its turn, keeps us healthy.

 

Boosted Energy Levels:

By stimulating the working of different organs and systems, reflexology can increase metabolism, blood circulation and detoxification. It can help bring the body back into balance and boost energy levels.

 

Increased Circulation:

Massaging of the reflex points opens blocked areas of the body, which can improve circulation so the blood, bringing nutrients and oxygen, can circulate more effectively. This means more oxygen reaches vital organs, optimizing their functioning and further increasing metabolism.

 

Relaxation and Better Sleep:

Reflexology can open neural pathways which can lead to a more relaxed body. Because reflexology reduces stress level, it induces a state of calmness throughout your body and mind. Because of this, reflexology is commonly used to cure insomnia. It can be a very troubling condition to suffer, but with reflexology, body and mind can relax and return to their normal rhythms.

 

Stress, Depression and Anxiety Reduction:

A hormone called serotonin is released by neurons in the brain and promotes the state of happiness. Low levels of the hormone may result in stress and depression. A simple massage of your toes may enhance the production of the hormone. Other glands like the adrenal, hypothalamic, pineal and pituitary can be stimulated at their reflex points in the feet and may bring relief to some conditions. Reflexology can also be very effective in alleviating anxiety.

 

Detoxification:

Toxins can accumulate within our body because of our rushed modern life style, combined with bad quality food and a stressful environment. Reflexology can help improve the urinary system and bladder function to more effectively eliminate toxins and other foreign substances and may help protect the body from various diseases and health conditions.

 

Pains and Aches Relieving and Reduction:

Reflexology is commonly used as a method of a pain reduction for migraines, headaches, neck pain or backaches by relieving the tension in muscles that often lead to these conditions. Headaches caused by stress can also be relieved through reflexology by helping reduce the psychological causes which often manifest themselves in physical symptoms.

 

Speed Healing:

The combination of increased nerve stimulation, improved circulation and a more balanced metabolism leads to faster cells re-growth, quicker wound healing and a much faster recovery.

 

Cancer Side Effects Cure:

There is no scientific confirmation that reflexology may directly cure cancer. However, it has been known to reduce the side effects of cancer treatments, such as radiation therapy and chemotherapy. It improves patients’ sleep, reduces digestive problems and vomiting and anxiety. It stimulates antioxidant productivity because it improves blood circulation and clears neural pathways. So it can help to destroy cancer cells and slow down the cancer spreading.

 

Pregnancy state, labour and postpartum easing:

Scientific studies have shown that reflexology can help balance the hormonal and emotional states during pregnancy and can help ease anxiety. Additionally it can help with other pregnancy conditions, such as general aches and pains, anaemia, haemorrhoids, sleeplessness, morning sickness, digestive problems and heartburn. Reflexology is also very popular to help shorten the period of labour and as a natural analgesic. However, it should only be used when the baby is ready to arrive and not before! And after the birth, reflexology can help the body recover faster and reduce postpartum depression.

 

Reduction of PMS and Menopause Symptoms:

Some Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) symptoms such as irritability, dysmenorrhoea, bloating, headaches, cramping, skin blemishes, breast tenderness, fluid retention, fatigue, insomnia and mood swings may be reduced by daily reflexology massage. It is also very useful for reducing menopausal symptoms like stress, depression, anxiety and hot flushes. 

In both cases, it focuses particularly on reflex points that influence the endocrine and reproductive systems. The glands and organs within these systems are responsible for hormone production and distribution. We concentrate on the pituitary, thyroid, hypothalamus, adrenal, ovaries and additionally on the kidneys and ureters areas.

This is to help eliminate toxins or excess fluids and to regulate and balance the hormone production and glandular functions of the body. As reflexology additionally calms the central nervous system, sleep disturbances can also be alleviated and emotional problems like anxiety, stress and depression can be reduced.

 

Good for your Feet:

Reflexology keeps your feet healthier. It stimulates the muscles, reduces inflammation, stiffness and pain in the ankles and heels, releases tension and eases tiredness. It helps to keep your feet free from problems such as achilles tendonitis, plantar fasciitis and toenail fungus. It keeps your ankles and feet flexible and strong.

 

For research article click here

Essential oils for cleaning

Some essential oils used in the home for cleaning, they are a natural option and smell amazing.

1. Lemon
Loved for its light, clean scent, this essential oil is also a powerhouse in homemade cleaning recipes. Naturally antibacterial and antiviral, lemon is commonly used to degrease stubborn stains as well as freshen the air. Use it to deodorize your fridge, clean the floor or combine 10 drops with 1/2 cup olive oil for a natural wood or leather polish.

2. Lavender

One of the best-smelling naturally antibacterial essential oils is lavender. Lavender pairs well with another common natural cleaner, vinegar. Just add 4-5 drops of lavender to your vinegar cleaning mixture for its natural antibacterial properties – and for a more bearable scent. Harness lavender’s soothing scent in homemade dish soap and linen spray to elevate washing dishes and laundry day.

3.  Eucalyptus
This natural germicide is a powerful dust mite buster. Use it with baking soda to deep clean your mattress and in a dry wash for stuffed animals or just put a few drop in your next wash cycle. And with its clean smell, eucalyptus is great for stinky jobs in the kitchen and bathroom. Eucalyptus leaves and essential oil are great in cupboards to deter pests.

4. Pine

Already a common ingredient in cleaners (Pine-Sol anyone?) pine oil is effective at killing yeast spores, E.coli and other household germs. Pine is perfect for ridding the bathroom of mold and mildew and cleaning hard floors while leaving a natural fresh scent.

5. Thyme

Thyme is one of the most powerful essential oil weapons against germs. Thyme is effective against salmonella so you can add it to homemade dish soap and use it to clean cutting boards that have come in contact with raw meat.