Cold and flu season has arrived, and it’s never been more important to give your immune system an extra boost. Here are some nourishing, immune-supportive home remedies to help you stay healthy through the fall and winter seasons.
Rosehips are packed with antioxidants and contain a high concentration of vitamin C that can boost your immune system. Rosehips also offer powerful anti-inflammatory properties that can help stave off those pesky body aches if you do catch a cold or the flu. You can create a tea from rosehips, add it to your salad or baked goods like you would with dried cranberries, or create a syrup with them. As soon as you start feeling a little under the weather, double the dose for extra vitamin C.
Elderberries are another plant berry that offers high levels of antioxidants and vitamin C. Do not eat elderberries raw or dried. Elderberries need to be cooked thoroughly to remove the risk of cyanide poisoning. Elderberries can be cooked down, the liquid strained, then mixed with honey to create a syrup. Elderberry syrup can be taken daily as a preventative. Other potent immune boosters can be cooked with the elderberries for a more potent and complete syrup.
Fire cider is a home remedy that has been used for decades to boost the immune system. Fire cider is made of vinegar and immune-boosting foods like horseradish, jalapenos, serrano peppers, onion, garlic, oranges, and lemon. The foods are sliced up and steeped in the vinegar for weeks before the liquid is separated and mixed with honey to create a thin syrup. The fire cider can be used as a dressing or marinade or can be taken as a shot or added to water each day.
Echinacea has proven to decrease the length and severity of the common cold by up to 50%. Echinacea is full of antioxidants and alkamides that further renew worn-out antioxidants. The flower can be added to an elderberry syrup recipe, used as a tea, or taken in capsule form.
It is now common knowledge that gut health directly affects the immune system. By healing your gut, you can increase your immune health and decrease your risk of common illnesses. Bone broth is loaded with amino acids, essential minerals, and vitamins. In bone broth, you will find calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, collagen, and gelatin. You can sip on bone broth alone or use it in your stews, soups, and other meals. Bone broth can be made at home by simmering marrow-rich animal bones like beef, chicken, pork, or turkey in water for 12-24 hours. You may want to add vegetables, herbs, and spices to enhance the flavor and immune-boosting properties of your broth.