There are several immune-building tactics that will pay off, especially in the late summer/fall when kids start bringing viruses home from school, or before traveling by plane or to a big city, etc. or any other place you’re likely to be exposed.

I’ve outlined several of the key diet and lifestyle factors which have worked beautifully for me in strengthening immunity, often to the point where I don’t get sick for years on end!

And, at the bottom of this article I listed several important tips for a healthier daily routine, as some of these overlap with immune boosting tips, and some you may never have known about!

One trick that’s worked for me every time I remember to do it, is to get an immune-boosting herbal tea blend into my system daily, for about 2 weeks in the early fall. I like to simmer about a week’s worth of immune-boosting tea, which is just 3 simple herbs (recipe below) to store in the fridge, so I can easily drink a cup in the morning and a cup in the evening. I sometimes remember to do this before I even hear of anyone getting sick, but usually, I find myself fervently rooting through my stash of herbs right after I hear of a sickness going around the community. Better late than never! I’ll simmer a big pot of this magical tea, to drink continuously for about a week, and then I’ll make another week’s worth, and then possibly another, as it tastes great too! 

Fennel & GreensI have a head start in maintaining a strong immune system compared to most people, because I practice a whole food diet and lifestyle, which happens to dovetail beautifully with the keys to developing strong immunity (listed below).

Self-care takes time, and there aren’t a lot of shortcuts to good health. But, I’ll bet you want that magic-yet-simple immuni-tea recipe anyway, right? Okay!

Magical-Yet-Simple Immuni-Tea Recipe:  In a large pot, bring 3qts of water to boil. Reduce heat to a low simmer, and add 3/4 cup Astragalus Root to simmer for 10 minutes. Next, add 1Tbsp dried Elderberries, and simmer another 3 min. Lastly, add 2Tbsp dried Lemon Balm herb, turn off heat, and let steep for 3 minutes. Strain herbs from liquid, let liquid cool for for 20 minutes or so, then refrigerate and enjoy a cup this tea (hot or cold), about twice a day, over the next 7-14 days.

On a side note: Did you know that the population of probiotic bacteria in one’s gut is THE FOUNDATION of one’s immunity?

And, over the next few months, try to remember that we often tax our immune systems throughout the holiday season with refined pleasure foods, alcohol, staying up late, family stress, and less self-care. So, be sure your self-care/immune-boosting deposits greatly outweigh your withdrawals!

Keys To Developing Stronger Immunity:

1) alkalize the body by eating 80% whole foods and green veggies, and only 20% refined/processed foods, meat, alcohol, sugar, etc.

2) eat 25% of your diet as greens (cook broccoli family veggies, but eat raw: spinach, beet greens & chard)

3) eat probiotic foods like raw sauerkraut or water kefir, or good quality probiotic supplements

4) eat food-state Vitamin C throughout the day (lemon juice, kiwi, tomato, peppers, cabbage, citrus with the pith, etc)

5) get good sleep in a dark room free from electronics & try to rise and fall with the sun as much as possible

6) exercise regularly (3x per week, 20min-1hr at a time) with an activity you love to do

7) get enough midday sunshine regularly (5-10 minutes may be enough if you’re fair) that you develop a base tan, but never burn

8) drink 3-4qts re-mineralized water daily (add a squeeze of lemon, 1tsp raw apple cider vinegar, or 1/8tsp Celtic or Himalayan salt)

9) practice having healthy relationships

10) herbs: elderberry, astragalus, echinacea, garlic, ginseng, lemon balm, aloe, and mushrooms: reishi, shiitake & maitake

11) eat vitamin A rich foods like: carrots, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, and pumpkin

12) eat some superfoods like spirulina or chlorella, blueberries, raw cacao, and goji berries

Tips For A Healthier Daily Routine

First thing in the morning, drink 8-16oz room-temp (or warm) water with a big squeeze of lemon (OR 1tsp apple cider vinegar)

1/2hr later (or when feeling hungry), have a low-sugar breakfast of complex carbs/fruit/nuts/avocado, OR a protein breakfast w/avocado & lots of greens

Rinse each cup of coffee from your kidneys with at least 8oz water

Supplements are best taken w/food before 2PM (krill oil, B-complex, Vit C & D, etc)

Lunch/Dinner both consist of at least 1/2 the plate as seasonal veggies (again: lots of dark leafys), and dinner is best before 6PM as a protein meal (zero carbs after 3PM)

Another 8-16oz re-mineralized water or herbal tea in the evening

No blue-light screen time after dark for better sleep