How to strengthen your immune system?
As the seasons start to change and as the times we’ve been experiencing feel so uncertain, health and its preservation seem to be the question on everybody’s minds. Aurélie Valois-Francoeur, certified naturopath, educates us on the importance of strengthening our immune system and offers us an enlightened look at naturopathy.
“When people come to see me, it is because they have a real desire to focus on their health, whether through understanding a certain discomfort or improving a situation,” says Aurélie. Following a targeted consultation, she is able to find answers and make a completed health status of each individual. “Naturopathy works to optimize health with food and healthy lifestyles in order to take into account an individual in its entirety.”
When it comes to the immune system, it is important to understand that there is a need to pay attention to it year-round. However, certain periods of the year are more favourable in strengthening it, the idea being not to “cure after the fact”, but to maintain constant prevention.
“It is best to start in the early fall, when the days start to get shorter,” indicates Aurélie. It is about keeping the healthy habits of the summer and transposing them to the upcoming shorter and darker days. “When the temperature drops, eating habits change too.” Increasing your immune system also means working on your digestive system and your intestinal flora, with the help of certain medicinal plants. Aurélie however insists on the fact that it is imperative to consult a doctor before taking them, in order to avoid any harmful interactions with the taking of certain medications.
Astragalus, a root used in tincture, like Reishi (mushroom), is used to gently strengthen the immune system. Various recipes are available to create a homemade preparation. These concoctions can be taken all year round.
But what about today?
It goes without saying that each immune system is unique and that there is not an exact science for each body. However, staying at home remains the best option to avoid any risk of contamination.
Aurélie emphasizes that it is important to work in prevention, by using for example Vitamin C, used by our white blood cells which play an essential role in the fight against infections. “Vitamin D, since there is a crucial lack of sun … a small supplement can always help!”, she adds.
This period of confinement is also a great time to catch up on sleep. “Sleeping is essential for our immune system. Since we’re usually lacking rest, why not take advantage of this time? “