So, here we are, facing an unprecedented health crisis. One that demands we be vigilant in washing our hands frequently and keeping a safe distance from others. But how else can we protect ourselves against viruses and disease?
One way is to enhance your own immune system through diet and exercise.
See, when it comes to Ayurvedic practice, all disease begins in the gut. Maintaining good digestive health is key to helping build a strong, natural resistance to illnesses. And we do that by paying attention to how we nourish our tissues.
In Ayurveda there are seven layers of tissue:
Majja (nervous system)
This is the order in which Agni, the digestive fire that breaks down food and nourishes your body through absorption and assimilation, ultimately feeding the tissues. It takes 35 days from the time you consume something for it to make it through all seven layers tissues.
Immunity then travels through the bloodstream to the entire body, giving you the resistance you need to ward off sickness. In other words, healthy Ojas, the juice of life, your resilience and vitality. Which is why it is imperative to consider the foods you eat. While that might sound obvious and trite, it could very well be the single most important decision you make in times like these.
Techniques for Increasing Immunity:
Build Agni – Eat easy to digest foods, like smoothies! Consider warm, light foods.
Eat Ojas-Building Foods – Healthy oils, fruits and veggies, nuts.
Exercise – Move your body and sweat every day.
Breathwork – Take time to focus on your breathing. Nadi Shodhana (alternate nostril breathing) is effective for calming stress and balancing the body.
Herbal Support – There are many herbs that help boost immunity, most you can find in your kitchen cabinet; ginger, turmeric, fennel, rosemary, honey, cinnamon, garlic, cardamom, and black pepper.
Get Adequate Sleep – Six to eight hours is recommended. This is an important time for the body to heal and reset. We can’t stress enough how valuable sleep is to not only your body but your overall constitution.
Stay Hydrated – Sip warm water throughout the day.
Elderberry – High in Zinc and vitamin C, antiviral.
Astragalus – An adaptogen with antiviral properties. It also helps build white blood cells.
Amalaki – Very high in vitamin C (20-30x that of an orange), rejuvenative, nutritive tonic, and antioxidant.