In light of recent health news around the world, you may be asking yourself “how can I protect myself from viruses?” The following will help protect you against not just viruses, but any bug or pathogen.
The best way to explain is with a quote from Louis Pasteur, who apparently on his deathbed said:
“the germ is nothing, the terrain – everything”.
What he meant, is that the terrain of our body is what determines how severely we’re affected by a bug. The good news is that we can each take responsibility to improve our terrain. We can make our body less hospitable to bugs, viruses and all pathogens.
Your Internal Terrain is Everything
Think of it this way: if you have seeds you want to grow, and you scatter on perfect soil for the seeds, they’ll grow into healthy and strong plants. If you scattered them on a bad surface, like concrete, and without water or moisture, they wouldn’t grow or survive. All germs, bacteria, and viruses need the right terrain to flourish.
So if your body is a good host to a bacteria or virus, it’s going to grow and flourish. As a result, you’ll get a cold, the flu, pneumonia – whatever that particular germ creates in the body.
What’s the naturopathic answer to virus protection?
In a nutshell, it’s a BOTH approach. Follow the hygiene rules promoted in the media at the moment around virus AND strengthen your terrain. Create the healthiest internal environment you can for yourself. As you’ll have gathered by now, this is exactly the kind of environment that germs and bacteria don’t do well in!
This is what we call health promotion. The combination of hygiene and health promotion will keep most people healthy.
5 things you can do for health promotion.
Eat a fresh (organic where possible) in-season diet. This should have as low a refined carbohydrate intake as you can manage and low-to-no processed foods. So, keep to a minimum cakes crisps, biscuits, sweetened cereals, white rice and bread and all processed foods. When checking a food’s carbohydrate content, check labels for the percentage of carbs and sugar per 100 g. This should be as low as possible. This is really important for the immune system.
A little question you can ask yourself if you’re not sure if something is a processed food, is: “did nature create this, or man?”
Make sure you’re getting a good nights sleep if you can. Turn Wi-fi off at the modem, turn mobile off or have flight mode on, don’t have it next to you. Make sure your bedroom room is as dark as possible. Use a night mask or blackout blinds.
Finally, make sure you’re not looking at the TV, your iPad or phone right up until you go to bed. If you are, consider blue-light blocking glasses to prevent stimulating your brain.
3. REDUCE STRESS.
We’re all triggered by and relieved from stress in different ways so do what works for you. You may try: meditation, yoga, Tai-Chi, seeing a talking therapist like a counsellor, taking herbs or homeopathic remedies which help with stress, taking hot baths with Epsom salts, or simply talking to friends or family. Whatever works do something to manage stress levels.
Drinking plenty of pure, filtered water, not tap and ideally not plastic bottled. Depending on your size, weight and how much exercise you’re doing, between 2-3 litres is a good aim.
Worth considering if you think your system is not as healthy as it could be. This may be the case if you’re under stress or not sleeping well, or know your diet isn’t as good as it could be. If so, you could supplement with Vitamins, C, D, A and could take herbal Echinacea.
- A good dose of Vitamin C per day for an adult is 1000mg , however for added protection if you are worried or around someone who is ill it is perfectly safe to go up to 4-5000mg per day for a limited time.
- Vitamin D the typical dose would be 2000iu (50mcg) per day is helpful.
- Vitamin A a good dose is 2,500 iu such as provided by BioCare’s vitasorb A.
- Echinacea dosage depends on the type you have purchased so follow the label, or get in touch for an immune tonic from me.
Vitamin D and A would be safe to do for a couple of months but shouldn’t be taken permanently. If you felt inclined to take them for longer, it’s worth getting your vitamin D levels checked.
With the Echinacea, taking it for 6 weeks then a week off is perfectly ok to do, again for a few months.
6. BONUS TIP – If you’re feeling brave end your morning shower with a cold blast (as cold as it will go) – a powerful way to boost the immune system.
Prevention over cure
Naturopaths believe that prevention is better than cure. So all the tips above are part of that preventative approach. However, if you are suffering from repeat infections or your immune system is not strong at the minute, don’t limp on ‘getting by’. If you think you may have caught a nasty virus or bacteria, either recently or in the past, Naturopathy has some powerful tools to help including herbal tonics and Bio-Resonance.
Finally, If you want a session to assess or improve your immunity or for specific enquiries about what extra measures can be taken for specific virus’s please get in touch in the usual ways.