Mason County News
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Natural Health from A to Z
Wednesday, November 6, 2013 • Posted November 6, 2013

Now is a good time to start building your immune system for flu season. Whether you are concerned about colds or flu, there are some great natural strategies for you to use to build your immune system.

Let’s review a bit about viruses and immune function. Viruses are opportunistic and function like scavengers. If the host is healthy and there is nothing to scavenge, the virus will not be successful.

An average body is somewhat easy to bring into balance and keep well. You want to make sure you are eating well balanced meals, getting plenty of sleep, exercising, and drinking plenty of water. If you are concerned about decreased immunity due to stress and what I call fast living (which we all do from time to time), my typical immune recommendations will work well for you.

I love a product called Elderberry Defense. It is a combination of Elderberry, Vitamin D, Echinacea and Olive Leaf. This is what I give my son. He doesn’t get sick enough to miss school unless he doesn’t take it. This comes in a chewable gummy form for kids and in capsule form for those who can swallow. Both work well and are a repeat favorite among mothers.

I am also a big fan of Olive Leaf Extract and Grapefruit Seed Extract. One of our bestsellers is a product called Defense Plus. It is a blend of Grapefruit Seed Extract, Vitamin C, Echinacea and several Mushrooms. Defense Plus is my “go to” remedy for almost anything infectious if you can swallow big pills. Some people take one per day of either Defense Plus or high quality Olive Leaf to stay well.

I personally take Olive Leaf – I have for years. The last time I got really sick was when I ran out of my favorite brand of olive leaf and took another one that I no longer sell.

There are other products worth mentioning that work. Colostrum, Thymus Extract, Vitamin C, Zinc, Echinacea, Astragalus, and Probiotics are all good immune builders. On the average body, any of these, or any combination will work.

It’s the “not” average bodies that will have trouble. These tend to be out of balance to begin with. They tend to be overrun with problems of congestion, inflammation and excess acidity. They are hard to balance as they tend to be a disease waiting to happen.

Bringing these bodies into balance is more of a challenge. I would recommend a whole body cleanse along with some diet changes for these types of bodies. The 2 key problems I see are yeast/fungus and eating too many refined foods – mainly white flour and white sugar. Balancing the diet and getting rid of yeast /fungus will give a virus less to scavenge. With some balance restored, this kind of body will respond well to typical immune builders, but may have to double or triple the average dose to get results.

I can usually predict the first outbreak of a cold or flu virus in the school. It will be after our first bout of cold rainy weather and it is usually after Thanksgiving. It seems to be the combination of rich food, virus exchange with cousins, and cold weather that keeps us inside (Vitamin D deficiency) that yields the first wave.

Cold and flus outbreaks also come from “fast living”. This is when we really need to be prepared. This is when we get run down from things like following the football team to all of their games while continuing all of our “normal” activities.

Watch for times of decreased immunity and boost yours naturally so you can stay well and enjoy life.

Margaret Durst owns The Green House, a vitamin, herb and health food store in Mason, Texas. www.naturalcowgirl.wordpress.com

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