Give a Cold & Flu the Boot!

Give a Cold & Flu the Boot!

It’s that time of year again when cold and flu germs seem to run rampant. There are theories as to why the cold and flu virus is worse during the winter months and the main one is because the virus prefers cold, dry temperatures. Also, we tend to get less Vitamin D during this time, which may lower our immune defense even further. We also spend excessive time indoors with windows closed and that may just feed the virus even more.

There are certainly many debates as to whether or not the flu shot is a good option, and I personally have not had a flu shot in over 25 years. But wherever you stand, there are numerous natural remedies which work well to help you remain healthy and to give that potential cold and flu the boot!

Here are some tried and true remedies:

Oil of Oregano – This is one herb that you don’t hear enough about but in my opinion is probably the most potent antibiotic in nature. This stuff works! Oregano has powerful antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, which have been shown to boost the immune system and fight bacteria, parasites, and fungus. Oregano oil contains over 50 active compounds with immune-boosting and germ-fighting properties, along with antioxidants such as Vitamin A and C, and minerals. During cold and flu season, use 3-5 drops of oil of oregano under the tongue once or twice per day followed by water to reduce your chance of getting an infection. It can also be used throughout the year whenever you feel a scratchy throat, cough, or other signs of an illness. It works especially well for those who have asthma, bronchitis, or other chronic chest infections.

Echinacea – This is probably the most popular of all cold-fighting herbs yet less effective than oregano in my opinion. Research shows that it increases the number of white blood cells, which in turn, fights infection. Although studies don’t show dramatic healing results, it certainly won’t hurt to add this to your cold and flu-fighting arsenal. Using Echinacea drops in room temperature water or juice is best and purchasing an organic version is always suggested. If you have allergies to daisies, ragweed, or marigolds, you may also be allergic to the Echinacea flower so proceed carefully.

Astragalus – Numerous Chinese studies have shown that astragalus has potent immune and chi-boosting effects and works well during cold season to reduce the number of colds caught and to lessen their duration. Like Echinacea, astragalus can increase the white blood count and help to ward off infection. It is even more potent when used with a Ginseng product. It may also help to increase your energy during the winter months by supporting the adrenal glands. You can boil dried astragalus root to make a soup or tea, or take a capsule, powder, or tincture.

Mushrooms – I have written about the powerful immune-boosting effects of mushrooms before and this is the perfect time to reference them again. Look for a powder or supplement containing a blend of ancient, healing mushrooms. Maitake, turkey tail, and cordyceps are just a few that contain awesome disease-fighting properties and will work during cold and flu season to give you that extra boost you’ll need to get you through free of illness.

Zinc – The mineral zinc also increases your production of white blood cells and assists them in fighting infection more effectively. Zinc helps your immune system to release antibodies that may protect you during cold and flu season. Look for a chelated zinc supplement, which may be ideal to take all year but definitely during the fall and winter months. Zinc lozenges may also boost your immunity and help to alleviate sore throats.

Garlic – While I am not a fan of eating raw garlic and it may not agree with everybody, some version of garlic is a good idea if you want to boost your immunity during cold and flu season. For those who don’t like the taste of garlic, consider taking a kyolic garlic supplement, which is aged garlic that is free of the pungent garlic odor. The immune-boosting effects of allicin, which is a component of garlic, can work wonders on strengthening your system and many people have sworn by its powerful support during the winter months.

Along with these plants and herbs, make sure to get plenty of rest and exercise, and take time to de-stress with meditation and yoga. Also be sure to carve out creative time for yourself. Drink plenty of fluids, and work on releasing negative thoughts, fears, and emotions on your own or with a therapist or coach. Lastly, make sure to supplement with extra Vitamin C and D to further boost your system and to give those cold and flu germs the boot!

* Always consult with your physician before taking any of the products listed above as some herbs, plants, and supplements may interfere with your current medications.

 

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Expert Living in Los Angeles.
http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com

He is the Best-Selling Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!

6 Steps to Get You Unstuck!

6 Steps to Get You Unstuck!

Life isn’t always easy. Regardless of how many self-help books we’ve read, the number of empowering seminars and warrior camps we’ve attended, sometimes we still suffer. After all, if we were happy and overjoyed all the time, we certainly wouldn’t be able to appreciate the awesomeness of the joyous experiences when they show up.

That being said, I truly believe that we can find more fulfillment, satisfaction, and joy in our day-to-day experiences once we learn the tools of how to live more consciously. I have certainly seen and felt this in my own life and I have witnessed countless others growing, evolving, and moving through stuff that had kept them stuck for years. Once we can delve deeper into the density of our heavy emotions, things often become lighter, brighter, and more surrendered on the other side.

The next time you find yourself in a dark place where you feel paralyzed, unloved, like a victim, or any number of other habitual ways of being, consider these steps which may help to remove some of the glue that keeps you stuck:

1) ACCEPTANCE – What we resist persists. Therefore it is time to accept these struggles fully and completely. In fact, we need to learn to love them. Instead of resisting and trying to move away from the down times, why not look them straight in the face and find out what they are trying to tell you? Every life experience has a message for us. The bad times have an especially valuable meaning. Begin asking your higher self for hints about why you continue this cycle. Listen carefully. The answers will come. Your higher life is calling you and it wants you to let go of these painful times once and for all.

2) SELF-LOVE – With accepting what is comes loving ourselves through our negative patterns. Continually beating ourselves up gets us nowhere! We need to become our own best support system and cheerleaders and we need to learn how to nurture that inner child who really is crying out for our love. Practice makes perfect. Begin catching those negative internal voices and stop them in their tracks. Then turn them into loving and supportive ones. This is the first step towards reprogramming outdated ways of being and letting them go completely.

3) GO INWARD – Take time each day to get quiet. Journal, meditate, read inspirational words, and sit quietly with your thoughts. Ask your Higher Self for messages and signs to lead you into a more positive direction. Trust that you are ALWAYS being guided and find faith in knowing that brighter days are ahead.

4) FIND A HEALER – Whether your suffering is physical, mental, or spiritual, there are people out there who can help. Search. Experiment. Continue to try new healers, doctors, psychologists, coaches, or a multitude of other “angels” who have been sent on our path to help us. Friends can also be there in our time of need but it’s our job to reach out. Learning one new tool or perspective may be just enough to get you over the hump.

5) TAKE ACTION – Once we are intuitively guided, it is up to us to take the physical steps in the direction of feeling better. Most often those steps are the ones that feel most exciting. Listen to your emotions and take baby steps that feel good and the ones which seem like the most logical next step. If you are inspired to take a bigger leap, know that it’s okay to do so. I have learned that the net always appears when you need it most. Understand that growth almost always comes with some anxiety, fear, and angst. When we can learn to accept this as part of the path, we will more quickly see and feel the results that we desire.

6) GRATITUDE – Sometimes the most difficult times to be thankful are while we are in the midst of struggle. We may need to force ourselves to make a list of things that we are grateful for. They are always in our presence, we just need to become more conscious of them. Focus your mind in a positive direction rather than on all those things that you don’t have. Gratitude creates miracles!

Take heart that you are in fact, moving through the heaviness even though it may feel as if you have been here over and over again. What we can’t see during these cycles is what is happening under the surface. The changes. The subtle shifts. The transformation. We cannot stay the same. It is virtually impossible. Just as our cells are constantly renewing, so too is our life. The good news is that although you may not yet feel the improvement today, it IS happening week-by-week, day-by-day, and moment-by-moment. Do your best to enjoy the journey with as much self-love that you can muster. You may just wake up one day and realize that they no longer have power over you.

Jay Bradley is an Anti-Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Expert Living in Los Angeles

He is the Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!