Pukka founder and herbalist Sebastian Pole gives his insight into how to create a healthy body and unified immune system. As an expert for G4AS he gives us his top tips for inner health.
A healthy immune system is vital in building the fabric of a healthy person. Immunity is the body’s defence against infections and should be seen as a holistic system involving our inner and outer worlds.
We know that the demand of our modern lifestyles can have a negative effect on our overall health.
Ayurveda helps manage a better balance of both a healthy inner and outer world. There are so many natural ways to boost your immune system, especially through the magic of herbs.
Immunity problems appear when you are tired and worn-down
This can manifest itself through lingering illnesses and weakness. There are immune stimulants and tonics that can help protect you from acute infections as well as offer long-term protection; andrographis is very effective for an acute respiratory infection or flu whilst ashwagandha is a powerful rejuvenative to keep you feeling strong in the face of continual stress and pressure.
Too much heat in the body can cause problems within the immune system
This can cause conditions such as asthma, eczema, colitis and Crohn’s disease. Slowing the inflammatory flow and reordering the immune response can help and prevent these conditions. Herbs that soothe inflammation such as neem and aloe vera juice play a place here.
Congestion in the body can cause symptoms of swelling or a blocked up, stuffiness
When this happens you need to reduce congestion. Pippali and ginger are good examples of warming herbs that can help to clear damp congestion and strengthen the immune system.
How you are feeling can affect your immune system
For example, stress in particular can reduce your overall immunity. Whilst today’s busy lifestyles can be hectic and stressful, regular yoga practice can help combat this. Exercise like this has been invaluable in helping me manage these emotions.
Massage is a rejuvenating practice that should be undertaken regularly
Along with helping you to relax and feel energised, massage clears stagnant lymph and toxins that build up in people suffering from chronic diseases. Massage has been shown to significantly improve immunity, decreasing the stress hormones and increasing the ‘feel-good’ hormones. In turn this can reduce depression, pain, anxiety and anger.
Immunity is a response to our experience and our eyes are said to be ‘the window to the world’
Ayurveda states our eyes absorb external experiences and feed them directly into the heart. A simple exercise to refresh your eyes and help yourself rejuvenate is palming. Simply rub the palms of your hands together until they are nice and warm. Close your eyes and place your palms over your eyelids, feeling the warmth radiate into your eyes. See the colours and feel the peace.
A healthy digestive system helps to feed the blood, which nourishes the heart and immunity
Interestingly, seventy per cent of your immune system is located in your digestive tract, where immune cells try to inactivate invading germs present in the food we eat. So, our digestion ‘talks’ to our immune system. A good diet for immunity cannot be emphasised enough as nutritional food protects health and can help to prevent disease. From the Ayurvedic perspective immune building foods to include in your diet are asparagus, grapes, pomegranates, ginger, turmeric, ghee, hemp seed oil and honey.
At the root of supporting our health is knowing how to nourish our spirit
Along with immunity it feeds happiness, fertility and an appreciation of life. It is enhanced by love, contentment and calm. I use elderberry, a natural vitamin C and Ashwagandha to keep me thriving in our wonderful world.
Visit pukkaherbs.com for more information