#19: You Don’t Have Time To Be Sick: Building a Strong Immune System

Who has time to be sick? Not you – so it’s time to put down the Purell and start strengthening your immune system. In this episode, I share four powerful ways to support your body’s defense. If you’ve been getting nervous with all of the COVID-19 madness, this episode will help you understand how to build yourself up, rather than just relying on hand sanitizer.

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Are you afraid of getting sick?

If so, it’s time to put down the Purell and start strengthening your immune system.

As of this writing, COVID-19 has hit several areas of the United States. I’m in New York, where they’ve declared a state of emergency and several schools have closed down. 

It’s assumed that things will get worse before they get better.

The best offense is defense

I just held my son’s laser tag birthday party at a local arcade. The place smelled like a swimming pool. 

It makes sense. Everyone is Clorox-ing and Lysol-ing everything. Local stores are sold out of hand sanitizer. 

This isn’t much different than what goes on during any flu season. The goal is to kill the germs. We want to eradicate it. It’s a very American approach. Guns blazing, we are gonna take out that virus before it gets us!

We are playing offense.

But I think it’s the weaker approach. 

Let me explain.

Your microbiome makes you strong

Your immune system depends on the good, healthy, friendly bacteria that live in and around your body. We live in a symbiotic relationship with these billions of bacteria. They’re on our skin, they’re in our bellies – they’re everywhere. 

They’ve been helping and protecting you since the day you were born. 

We refer to these friendly, microscopic bugs as your “microbiome.” 

But then we use hand sanitizers and clorox wipes. We practically gargle with bleach. (Omg, please never do that.)

We’re trying to kill the coronavirus, or whatever germs we’re worried about. We want them off our door handles and kitchen counters and grocery shopping carts. And it might work. We are killing some of the germs out there, it’s true.

But guess what else we’re killing? Our healthy, friendly bacteria. And in doing so, we weaken our system. We weaken our immune response. 

Pure irony.

Until there’s a hand sanitizer that’s specific to killing JUST the coronavirus, or the flu virus, or whatever….I’m not using it. I never do. You can wash your hands with normal soap and water and get rid of germs WITHOUT compromising your very, very necessary microbiome.

Supporting your immune system makes you powerful

Think about how many times you’ve been sick in your life. 

Then, think about all the times you weren’t sick! Think about all the days you’ve gone to work or school, completely healthy. 

You’ve likely had contact with bacteria and viruses every day of your life. But when your immune system is strong, it protects you. You’re not affected.

What makes a strong immune system?

  1. Cut the sugar
    Sugar suppresses your immune system. That doesn’t mean you should avoid natural sugars in fruit or root vegetables. However, it does mean that the chocolate, cakes, muffins and sugar in your coffee are weakening your system, making you more susceptible to getting sick.
  2. Don’t overlook basic healthy habits
    The basics are a huge percentage of your health status: Eat your veggies. Drink water. Get a full night’s sleep. (But this isn’t what we do, is it? We let ourselves exist on coffee and 5 hours of sleep. Then we’re left squirting hand sanitizer, hoping to protect our weakened systems.)
  3. Herbs and supplements
    Here are some that I personally use to support my immune system during cold and flu season. Think of it as a power boost. Note: Herbs tend to work best when taken at the very first sign of symptoms.

    Yin Chiao
    Elderberry syrup (for influenza, not colds)
    Vitamin C
    Vitamin D

  4. Get rid of stress
    This is huge. Much like sugar, stress inhibits your immune response. (As if there weren’t already a million reasons to walk away from too many commitments or a toxic workplace?)

It’s all about playing a strong defense. Take exquisite care of yourself, physically, mentally and emotionally – that is where your power lies.

Not in a bottle of hand sanitizer.


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