5 Powerful Herbs to Boost the Immune System

Image and video hosting by TinyPic If you live on the east coast like myself than you're really feeling the effects of winter. Cold, cold, and more cold! Not to mention less sunlight which is a big bummer. No matter how healthy I believed myself to be I recently came down with a little sniffle. I attribute it to not sleeping enough. I've been working out really hard in Capoeira and haven't been giving my body enough sleep to repair itself. It doesn't matter that I'm eating the most nutritious food, if I'm not giving my body the proper rest it desires it's going to let me know.

When you feel you may be coming down with something, this would be a good time to dabble into herbal remedies beyond your regular wellness routine. You could also load up on something you're more familiar with such as good ol' vitamin C. Listed below are a few of my favorites or ones that are pretty well known. I leave it up to you to research and decide which is best for your condition. You can click on the links too for a more detailed description of each one. Please note: If you're taking prescription drugs you should consult with your doctor to be sure that the two don't interact with one another.

Medicinal mushrooms

No not that ones that make you see funny colors, those are called psilocybin. ;-) I'm talking about medicinal ones like Reishi, Maitake, and Cordyceps to name a few. They pack a powerful boost to the immune system. Since I don't live near a forest or have the time to go forage and pick them, I opt for New Chapter's products. I've also used their Zyflamend (anti-inflammatory) and experienced great results.

Schizandra and Astragalus

Technically two herbs but Gaia herbs has combined the two into a fantastic tincture. I've used this product before and found it easy to take daily in warm cups of tea.

Black Elderberry

Though I've never used it, there seems to be a lot of great information pointing in the way of this amazing berry.

Echinacea

We've heard about this one for quite some time, but beware of imposters. Jon Barron of Baseline Nutritionals has some high quality products such as the echinacea. As with any supplement it's always good to buy from a reputable company that has your health as it's number one priority. An easy way to decipher is to read the back of the label. What is the first ingredient on the back? The herbal supplement or a number of fillers? There's your answer.

If you don't like to shop on line you should be able to find most of these herbs at your local health food store or Whole Foods Market.

Please note: I do not have any financial ties or affiliations with the company's mentioned above. Please consult with a master herbalist for a more in depth understanding of herbs and how they work with your body.

The question of the day is:

Have you used herbal remedies for an ailment you had and if so did they work?

Making Fresh Juice with a Blender in under 5 minutes!

Juicing can be extremely healing for the body. Drinking fresh unpasteurized juices can help aid in detoxification, relieve water retention, and flush the system of toxins. As much as we know it's good for us, I hear the same things all of the time like, "I don't have time, there's too much clean up, and I can't juice anyways because I don't even have a juicer." Hey I agree, me neither. Heck, I don't like to disassemble that thing and wash each part by hand, let it dry, and then try and put it back together. That's just too much work for me. I'm all about simplicity.

Juicing in a blender is a cinch and it can be done under 5 minutes. Watch my how to video below to learn how to do it yourself. The only requirements are that you have a high speed blender like a vita-mix or blendtec . You can try to use a department store blender, but I'm not guaranteeing great results, worth a try though. You will also need a nut milk/sprouting bag. A little secret of mine, I like to get them at a hardware store like a Home Depot. They're much cheaper and basically the same thing except it's called a 1 gallon nylon mesh paint strainer bag.

So will all of this in mind, my question to you is: Which do you prefer to use on a regular basis? A juicer or blender and why?

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