Unless we want to live in a bubble, what can we do to protect ourselves?
1. The relationship between emotional stress and the depletion of the immune system. The research shows how the immune system appears to benefit from the practice of yoga, and other activities which harmonise the mind/body/spirit. These forms of training encourage ‘coherence’, as opposed to ‘chaos’, in the rhythm of the heart beat. Immunoglobulin A (IgA) is the body’s front line defence against infectious agents. It is present in all the mucous membranes of the body. When volunteers were asked to recall an occasion when they became stressed or angry, thus inducing a chaotic heart rhythm, the secretions of IgA dropped for an average of 6 hours. Negative emotions appeared to have a negative effect on their immunity, unless the volunteers had learned how to induce ‘coherence’. Research showed that those who had learned simple techniques for quietening their heart and brain through yogic breathing techniques could maintain coherence in the heart rate, and thus reduce the likelihood of a drop in their IgA levels. For more breathing techniques, click HERE.
2. How sweating works – when sweat glands are stimulated to increase production, they secrete a substance (sweat) which is synthesized from the fluid which fills the spaces between our body’s cells (the interstitial spaces). This fluid comes from blood plasma leaked into the tissues by capillaries. Any circulating toxins present in the blood system are carried into the interstitial spaces along with the plasma. In this way toxins make their way into sweat, which is a filtrate of the plasma. Heat stress and exertional activities speed up the circulation of blood and thus accelerate the release of fluid into the interstitial spaces. This in turn prompts sweat glands to produce more toxin-laden sweat.
Most people living in modern times do not sweat very much. Lack of adequate exercise, the prevalence of climate control technology at home and in the workplace, and the non-physical nature of most jobs contribute to minimal sweating. Unfortunately, decreased sweating means decreased toxin removal -so get moving!
3. Other supplements which can be helpful:
- Bee Pollen – a wonder of Nature, but in the light of the current crisis in the bee population, and simply because of the massive amount of energy required for a bee to produce one single grain, I would counsel against using it, and if you do, to use it mindfully.
- Citrus seed extract – there seems to be a lot of controversy surrounding the purity of the extract, and therefore the possibility of allergic reactions. If you do use it, check that it is cold pressed and extracted without using chemicals, or better still collect up your grapefruit pips and make your own!
- Garlic – if you can hold a peeled garlic clove between your cheek and teeth for 20 minutes, 3 times a day, you are welcome! Seriously though, fresh raw garlic can halt a viral infection in its tracks but needs to be taken 3 times a day. Taken at the first signs of cold or flu, good quality garlic perles may also help.
- Pep up your food – fresh ground black pepper is a diaphoretic. It opens up the pores for sweating and is helpful at the onset of colds and flu. Keep it on the table and use it every day.
- For the body – Healing With Whole Foods by Paul Pitchford.
- For the mind and emotions – Healing Without Freud or Prosac by Dr David Servan Schreiber.
5. For a quick and easy guide to sprouting your seeds at home, this short video is fun!
6. AND FINALLY, THE DISCLAIMER –
These are all my own thoughts and words on the subject. They are not necessarily those of the suppliers of any of these products. I believe that positive thoughts and positive actions lead to positive outcomes. Let me know how you get on!