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Nutrition and the Immune System
The immune system is one of the most important mechanisms for fighting disease and preserving health. Simply put, good nutrition is an important factor in maintaining a healthy immune system and combating environmental illnesses..
TIP Hot Foods for Colds:hot foods such as chilli peppers, hot mustard, radishes, pepper, onions, and garlic contain substances called "mucolytics" (similar to over-the-counter expectorant cough syrups) that liquefy thick mucus that accumulates in the sinuses and breathing passages.

Nutrition for Immunity - stimulating the body"s defenses using
Immuno-Supportive Herbs.
Herbs have been used for centuries in virtually every culture in the world.

Astragalus - traditional Chinese herbal medicine is believed to promote and enhance the immune system, replenish the "defensive energy" and accelerate wound healing.
Echinacea - used by numerous tribes to treat a variety of symptoms and diseases, including: sore mouth and gums, toothache and coughs, and as an anti-inflammatory and antiseptic agent its influence on immune cell proliferation, antibody production, and antiviral activitiessupport and recovery from the common cold and influenza. Echinacea has an excellent safety record. After hundreds of years of use, no toxicity or side-effects have been reported except rare allergic reactions in sensitive individuals.
Cat's Claw - a woody vine that grows in Peru catechins, alkaloids, ellagic acid and other phenolic antioxidants which are beneficial in the treatment of specific types of cancer. The most immunologically active alkaloids, the oxindole alkaloids, isopteropodine and pteropodine, to stimulate immune function. In additon, the presence of glycosides, proanthocyanidins and beta sitosterol help provide anti-viral, anti-tumor and anti-imflammatory support for the body.
Ginseng - As an adaptogen, Ginseng is believed to produce a state of increased resistance to stress, supporting our abitity to resist disease by building up our general vitality and strengthening our normal body functions.the herb and its extracts can boost immunity, inhibit cancer, increase energy and physical stamina and have variable effects on blood pressure and blood sugar. A recent study found that ginseng helps prevent symptoms of the common cold.
Garlic - stimulates the body's immune system, boosting the killing ability of natural killer cells and increasing macrophage activity. Garlic also works against heart disease and strokes by lowering cholesterol levels and blood pressure. As an anticancer agent, Milner and others' work shows that garlic slows tumor growth and protects against potential damage from oxidation, free radicals, and nuclear radiation.

Antioxidants And Immune Support
Antioxidants not only reduce disease symptoms, but may also reduce the long-term effects of chronic oxidative stress, which has been linked to the development of cancer from some viral infections. Strawberry and spinach occur naturally.

Vitamin C
- It is well known that Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant, and this protective activity is now proving vital in recovery from infection
Vitamin E - is the body"s premier fat-soluble antioxidant, and complement of vitamin C, the premier water-soluble antioxidant. Vitamin E is the major protective antioxidant for cell membranes, the dynamic matrices on and in which most of the body"s metabolic activity occurs.
Just as vitamin E protects serum lipoproteins and regulates prostaglandin balance, new research suggests that vitamin E supplementation may enhance phagocytosis, cell-mediated immunity, humoral immunity, and reduce the effects of stress on the immune response. 15
Vitamin A - is one of the best documented nutrients for supporting immune function. A deficiency in vitamin A is known to reduce resistance to infection by lowering neutrophil phagocytosis, cell-mediated immunity, humoral response and interleukin II production. Recent research has found a strong link between vitamin A intake and upper respiratory infections.
B-vitamins - The B-complex vitamins are a group of eight inter-related vitamins, which occur together in natural plant and animal sources. Because these vitamins are water soluble, they cannot be stored to any large degree in the body and therefore must be taken in daily. They are easily lost through refining, processing, cooking and peeling of foods. Rich sources of B vitamins are green vegetables, potatoes, wholegrain cereals, fresh and dried fruit, pulses (peas, beans and lentils), nuts, seeds, liver and lean meat.
Bioflavenoids - A group of phytonutrients called bioflavenoids aids the immune system by protecting the cells of the body against environmental pollutants. Bioflavenoids protect the cell membranes against the pollutants trying to attach to them.
Carotenoids - Beta carotene increases the number of infection-fighting cells, natural killer cells, and helper T-cells, as well as being a powerful antioxidant that mops up excess free radicals that accelerate aging.
NAC - N-Acetyl Cysteine (NAC) has been extensively researched for its antioxidant properties, particularly in its potential to neutralize the chemical by-products of smoking.
Selenium - A deficiency of selenium results in depressed immune function, whereas selenium supplementation augments and restores proper immune system function. Selenium helps with the development of all white blood cells.
Zinc - This mineral is required for its role in resistance to infection and wound healing. It can be found in liver and red meat, egg yolks, dairy products, wholegrain cereals and seafood - particularly oysters and shellfish.
Magnesium - Magnesium is extremely important - it is a mineral essential for activating chemical reactions, transporting glucose to the cells and boosting your immune system. At times of high psychological stress, our magnesium requirements are even higher. This mineral can be found in oysters, shellfish, herring, liver, legumes and milk.
Reishi Mushroom - It is used for symptomatic relief of arthritis and of menopausal anxiety. It is also used in treating allergic asthma, hypertension, hypothyroidism, bronchitis, insomnia, general anxiety and stress, and cardiovascular problems. Reishi also is often the main ingredient in herbal formulas for immune dysfunction syndromes, such as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

Superfoods top
Apples are rich in an antioxidant called quercetin which has anti -cancer and anti-inflamatory actions. Eat apples unpeeled. Good for digestive system and cleaning the gut.
Carrots are good for cleaning the skin and are rich in beta-carotene (an antioxidant) . Best eaten with a little oil in either salads or stir fries or juiced.
Garlic contain phytochemicals which protect against heart disease , highblood presssure , colon cancer and help reduce choloesterol levels. It is a decongestant and has anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties.
Broccoli is rich in vitamin C, folic acid, calcium and beta-carotene (also cauliflower, brussels sprouts and cabbage). Eat raw or steam - full of phytochemicals.Sprouted mung beans contain more vitamin C than unsprouted beans as well as enzymes, protein and fibre. Eat raw in salads or as a snack.
Lemons have a strong cleansing effect and stimulate the digestive system. Full of Vitamin C use the whole lemon as the phytochemicals are found under peel pith and juice.Quinoa is a nutty grain rich in fibre, iron, magnessium and several B vitamins. Steam or boil and eat instead of rice or pasta or as a breakfast cereal.
Papaya contains vitamin C , beta-carotene, fibre and phytochemicals with antioxidant properties. They contain papin to help digestion.
Flaxseeds (linseeds) are rich in omega-3 oils and contin fibre that protects your gut and prevents the absorption of bile acids. They help to eliminate waste, prevent constipation, and aid regular bowel movement. Store in fridge. top

Coping with alternatives

Instead of wheat bread eat rye, pumpernickel or wheat-free bread.

Instead of wheat pasta eat pasta made from corn, quinoa, rice or millet.

Instead of wheat noodles eat soba (buckwheat) noodles and rice noodles.

Instead of wheat breakfast cereals eat muesli made from oat, rye or millet flakes & porridge made with oats or millet.

Instead of butter eat hummus, tahini, nut butter and guacamole.

Instead of cakes and biscuits eat fresh fruit.

Instead of breakfast cereals eat muesli made from oat, rye or millet flakes & porridge made with oats or millet &.fruit.

Instead of chocolate eat iquorice bars, fruit bars or sesame snaps

Instead of sweets eat raisans, sultanas, apricots, dates.

Instead of squash or cordials eat freshly squeezed juices & water

Instead of milk eat rice, almond or sesame milk.


To Eat and What Not to Eat - that is the question!
Once you have been chemically exposed a priority will be to cleanse your bodiy of the toxins harming it. You can help your body to do this by eating certain types of food that will assist the body excretary functions. To detoxify the following foods can be of assistance to you - if in any doubt do ask a qualified nutitionalist.

You will probably have to change your eating habits in order to detoxify but remember if you remove something from your diet it is possible to replace it with an alternative. There are some superfoods which are particularly beneficial to aid in detoxifying yourself. Try to eat as much as your food in its natural state or alternatively either steam or stir fry your food. Avoid boiling, but if you do, use little water and bring the water to a boil before adding the food and cook for only the minimum amount of time. top

What To Eat
Fresh fruit banana (limit these to 1 per day)
; millet, brown rice, quinoa, rye, buckwheat,
; rye, wheat-free, pumperknickel
Crisp breads; rye, rice cakes, oatcakes
Water and herbal teas
Freshly squeezed juices; carrot, apple celery
Pulses and bean sprouts
; rice, almond and sesame milk
Nuts; brazil, almond, cashew
Cold-pressed oils
Fresh herbs
Pasta; only wheat-free

What Not to Eat top
Coffee, tea & other caffeine drinks
Dairy products; milk, cheese, yogurht, cream
Cakes, biscuits, sweets
Fish Eggs
Wheat bread, pasta, noodles, crackersWhite rice
Ready meals
Artificial food additives
Fried foods
Artificial sweeteners
Hydrogenated fats
Fizzy drinksSquashes & cordials

Fruits contain essential phytochemicals as well as vitamins and antioxidants. Aim to eat at least 3 portions of fruit per day mixing the colours for either snacks, deserts or juice drinks. Dried fruit is okay in small quantities.
Grains and breads from whole grains provide fribre, vitamins (B & E minerals (postassium, magnesium, zinc, iron & selenium), complex carbohydrates and samll amounts of essetntial oils. Grains provide slow releasing carbohydrates which provide more sustained energy. Oats contain smaller amounts of gluten than wheat but avoid them if you are prone to bloating or have a gluten sensitivity.
Vegetables at least 3 portions a day particularly of a cruciferous vegetable eg broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, watercress or cauliflower as these contain glucosinolates, which help the liver's detoxifying enzymes. Vegetables are best eaten raw in salads or lightly steamed. You can also juice them.
Pulses provide protein and Vitamin B, iron, zinc and fibre. Include a variety of beans, lentils and bean sprouts. Sprouted beans in particular are rich in enzymes, vitamins, minerals and protein.

TIP Sprouting: Mung beans, chick peas aduki beans and alfalfa seeds are good for sprouting. Simply soak a tablespoon overnight, drain and rinse. Place in a wide neck jar and rinse them daily until they start to sprout. Ready to eat when shoots are 1cm high.


Nuts and seeds are rich in essential fats, omega-3 and omega-6 oils, protein, fibre, vitamins and minerals.and of particular use are almonds, brazils and cashew nuts.Eat plain nuts without the flavourings (toasted will bring out a nutty flavour). Essential fats are easily oxidised if exposed to air (ie damaged) therefore eat them as fresh as possible and store in an airtight jar. About 1 tablepsoon a day will give the best balance - to get the omega-3 and omega-6 grind flaxseeds (linseeds) or pumpkinseeds onto your food.
Cold-pressed oils from pumkinseed, flaxseed and walnut are rich in omega-3 while sesame and sunflower are rich in omega-6. Nutritional value of oils is destroyed on heating so try to use them for dressings or drizzliing over food rather than frying with. Store in a dark place.
Non-dairymilk includes rice, almond and sesame milk which do taste different to cow's milk but you use them in the same way. If you do use soya milk keep it to a minimum and go organic and unsweetened with them.

TIP Almond Milk: Soak a handful of blanched almonds overnight in 300ml of water. Remove their skins then whiz in blender. You can add a vanilla pod for extra flavour if you want to.

Fresh Herbs are great for detoxing. Most varieties help digestion and have a cleansing effect. Spices are also very effective.
Wheat products contain gluten which some people find hard to digest and may cause bloating and wind. Products to avoid include: bread, wheat-based breakfast cereals, durum wheat pasta, white, brown and wholemeal flour, ordinary noodles, couscous, cakes and biscuits.
Caffeine acts as a stimulant and mimics the effects of stress on the body thereby depleting it of essential nutrients. Thus coffee, tea and caffeine based drinks provide a 'quick fix' but will ultimately leave you feeling more tired, irritable and restless often with a headache. Cut down amounts of caffeine slowly to avoid any withdrawal symtoms.
Alchohol is a cell toxin. The lier breaks alchohol down to acetaldehyde (a toxin) that harms the liver, brain and muscles. It increases free radical production and uses up and destroys B vitamins and Vitamins C and E. Alchohol acts as a diuretic making you excrete more fluid and also more vital minerals such a magnesium, calcium and potassium.
Salt should be replaced with herbs and spices for flavouring such as fresh ground black peppper, fresh herbs, lemon and lime juice or cider vinegar. Fruit, vegetables and grains contain potassium which helps to flush out excess salt of your body and rebalance your body's sodium levels.
Dairy products can be a problem to digest because of the lactose (milk sugar) content. They can cause excess mucuous in the sinuses and nasal passages and also create bloating, discomfort and flatuence.
Meat and fish should be taken in small amounts and even cut them out for a while to help encourage any old mucoid build-up in the gut to be passed out.
Ready meals mostly contain artificial additives and should not be taken at all.

Shopping List top
Choose what appeals to you most and buy seasonal food for best value.
Mineral Water (still), Herbal teas (preferably loose leaf e.g. peppermint, camomile, dandelion root, horsetail and yarrow), Rooibosch tea, Warm water with a slice of lemon and fresh ginger (acts as good thirst quencher warm or cold).
Non-dairy milk
Almond milk, Rice milk, Sesame milk.
Apples, apricots, peaches, papayas, bananas, cherries, plums, kiwi fruits, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, melons, mangoes, peas, grapefruits, lemons, limes, satsumas, clementines.
Alfalfa, artichokes, asparagus, avocado, celery, lettuce, watercress, green beans, runner beans, beans, spinach, peas, mangetout, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, rocket, potatoes, sweet potatoes, yams, pumpkins, peppers, squashes, courgettes, onions, garlic.
(Either as flakes or flour)
Millet, brown rice, quinoa, buckwheat, oats, non-wheat pasta (e.g. corn rice millet).
Pulses and Beansprouts
Sprouted beans (e.g. mung alfalfa, chickpeas) red kidney beans, chickpeas, black-eyed beans, haricot beans, butter beans, lentils (red, green, brown), hummus.
Nuts and Seeds
Almonds, brazils, walnuts, pecans, cashews, hazelnuts, pine nuts, peanuts, pumpkinseeds, flaxseeds (linseeds), sesame seeds, sunflower seeds.
Bread and Crispbreads
Wheat-free yeast-free bread, 100% rye bread, pumpernickel bread, rye crackers, oatcakes, rice cakes.
Cold pressed oils
Essential oil blend, flaxseed, pumpkinseed, walnut, sesame, sunflower, extra-virgin olive oil.
Selection of fresh herbs e.g. coriander, mint, chives, parsley, basil, marjoram, oregano, dill.
Cumin seeds and ground cumin, cardamom, ginger, coriander seeds and ground, coriander, caraway, fennel seeds, paprika.



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