Friendly gut flora is your main defence against bacteria and viruses. In today’s world, friendly bacteria in the gut is easily disrupted – stress, processed foods, and medication are just some of many ways gut flora is destroyed.
The good news is that there are many steps you can take to boost your body’s healthy flora, such as consuming fermented foods like kimchi, kefir, and kombucha and taking a multi-strain, high-potency probiotic supplement.
With cold and flu season around the corner, you may be looking for natural ways to keep your immune system strong.
Here’s what I recommend in addition to fermented foods and a high-quality probiotic:
- restful sleep
- minimal stress
- a balanced diet
- regular exercise
- And … a daily dose of raw coconut oil!
Today, I’d like to introduce you to one of my favourite superfoods – 100% pure, raw coconut oil.
Did you know that coconut oil, in its purest, rawest form, can help prevent colds/flu?
In fact, it has been scientifically proven to reduce the length and severity of colds.
4 tablespoons of pure coconut oil has been shown to protect against a variety of viruses, even those that infect the upper respiratory tract (sinuses, nasal passages and throat).
The medium chain fatty acids in coconut oil make up two-thirds of its composition and contain monoglycerides, which break down and destroy the lipid coating that envelopes certain viruses. The monoglycerides in the medium chain fatty acids have anti-viral properties and work to inactivate microorganisms when they attempt to attack. Diglycerides and triglycerides do not carry these anti-microbial benefits.
Dr. Jon Kabara discovered the potent antimicrobial characteristics of coconut oil in the 1960’s. Since then, research on coconut oil’s immune boosting properties has continued.
Your immunity is based on multiple lifestyle factors, therefore, if you’re not taking good care of yourself, you can bet that your immune system is feeling it.
According to Bruce Fife, Naturopathic Doctor and well-known coconut oil expert, coconut oil attacks lipid coated microorganisms.
No other fat exists in the world which can destroy harmful microorganisms and leave the helpful one’s in the gut alive.
Another fascinating fact – coconut oil is much like breastmilk – in it’s ability to support a healthier immune system. Think about a baby building up their immune system in their first couple years of life. The monolaurin in breastmilk helps a baby’s immune system while protecting against invaders.
Coconut oil contains monolaurin.
In fact, it is the only food source available to mankind that contains monolaurin, as found in breastmilk.
This monoglycerides protect against microorganisms while maintaining beneficial bacteria in the gut.
So, with winter around the corner, here are 3 great ways to use coconut oil at home:
- You can mix a small amount with eucalyptus oil or peppermint oil and rub it onto your chest to open up the airways and reduce sinus congestion.
- You can mix 1-2 tablespoons in your soothing soup (make sure it isn’t too hot as coconut oil is best consumed raw).
- You can add 1-2 tablespoons to a morning immune boosting smoothie or warm herbal tea.
Take The 30 Second Quiz: Rate Your Immune System?
- Do you get sick more than two times per year?
- Do you have swollen and/or tender lymph nodes?
- Are you prone to urinary tract infections (UTI’s), yeast infections, or cold sores?
- Do you feel run down or fatigued during the day?
- Do you catch colds easily?
- Do you eat a poor diet that lacks nutrient-dense foods?
- Do you have poor sleep habits or struggle with insomnia?
- Do you feel stressed or have a difficult time managing stressful situations in your personal life or at work?
If you answered yes to any one of the above questions, your immune system may need additional support.
Not getting adequate sleep, high levels of stress, and a poor diet (particularly high in sugar) can compromise your body’s natural ability to recognize, attack, and kill microorganisms. That being said, giving the immune system a boost is quite simple. By leading a healthier lifestyle and implementing tips in this article, you may be well on your way to a healthier YOU!
Cheers to a strong, healthy immune system!