Throughout my childhood I frequently suffered from infections, viruses and colds. Since changing my lifestyle and adopting a cyclic ketogenic diet, I rarely suffer from flu-like symptoms. That being said, here are my go-to tricks for fast recovery from the common-cold.
Garlic has long been used to treat various ailments, from open wounds during the First and Second World Wars, to cholera in India and China. Today, garlic can be used to fight a variety of bacteria and fungi, such as Candida, Salmonella and Crytococcus (which causes meningitis). Unlike antibiotics, there is no evidence that garlic creates bacterial resistance, making it one of my favourite remedies1.
Turmeric is frequently praised for its anti-inflammatory, immunity-boosting properties, due to the compound curcumin; even low-dose supplementation can enhance antibody response2. Eat turmeric alongside fat for superior absorption3.
Ginger has potent anti-inflammatory properties, which is why it has been used to reduce fevers for many years4. Ayurvedic medicine claims that through its warming effect on the body, ginger can help eliminate toxins5.
One of the many benefits of drinking bone broth is the immunity boost. The amino acids produced when making chicken bone broth reduce inflammation in the respiratory system6.
Decreased levels of vitamin D are linked to increased susceptibility of infections7. I take vitamin D frequently as in the UK sunlight is somewhat restricted. When feeling under-the-weather, it is one of the first supplements I reach for.
When taken immediately after noticing symptoms of respiratory infections, echinacea can reduce the duration and severity of colds8.
It has been shown that those suffering from zinc deficiency can experience an increase in susceptibility of contracting pathogens9. Zinc supplementation also decreases oxidative stress10, which can contribute to neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimers11.
Olive Leaf has potent antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral properties. It has been shown to be effective in supporting the immune system when fighting off colds and flu, cold sores, ear infections and sore throats12.
I find that massaging lavender oil onto my temples provides relief from headaches. When congested, I also use peppermint oil, stirring a few drops into a bowl of steaming water and breathing in the aromas.
Cold-Busting Chicken Soup, on the blog Saturday.
Disclaimer: If unwell, please seek the advice of a doctor. I am not a qualified doctor or nutritionist so cannot recommend these supplements be taken to cure illness. My opinions are based on what I have read and personal experience.
1: Garlic, The Might Bulb, 2012, Natasha Edwards.
2: “Spicing up” of the immune system by curcumin, 2007.
3: How to Improve Absorption or Bioavailability of Turmeric?
4: The Bulletproof Diet, 2014, Dave Asprey.
5: 10 Medicinal Ginger Health Benefits, Dr. Axe.
6: Bone Broth Benefits for Digestion, Arthritis and Cellulite, Dr. Axe.
7: Vitamin D and the Immune System, 2011.
8: Immune system effects of echinacea, ginseng, and astragalus: a review, 2003.
9: Zinc and immunity, 1998.
10: Zinc in human health: effect of zinc on immune cells, 2008.
11: What is Oxidative Stress?, Dr Ananya Mandal, MD.
12: Olive Leaf Extract, Nature’s Secret to Wellness, 2012, Gerald Quigley.