Talking immunity with BePure's Lisa Walker

Right now I’m on day five of Covid, and starting to feel a little on the mend but still sicker than I have in years. And yep, I’m triple vaxxed and usually the picture of health, demonstrating how destructive the beast can be. It’s also nearing the colder months, when the added issue of colds and flu raise their own ugly heads, which means we all better start doing something extra when it comes to our immunity.
In the last few months, Google Trends has shown sustained spikes for “immunity boosters.” Little wonder, given the current climate. But Lisa Walker (nee Grey), leading health specialist at BePure, is wary of the term ‘boost’. She says what we should be striving for is balance.
“Human immunity is not a robot that you can simply charge, or ‘boost’, it’s a finely tuned system that requires balance. Overdo it, and you can end up with inflammation, or worst-case scenario, an auto-immune condition. But you don’t want underactive immunity either, because this is how we fall sick. What you really want is to be able to switch your immune function off, and on, depending on what’s going on for you.”

I’ve spoken personally with Lisa (pictured above) on several occasions about all things health (including hormone testing, but that’s for another post coming soon!), and have to say she is a mine of information and just damn practical advice. Zero woo and a master of ‘layman’s terms’ (for wont of a better phrase), she is a great person to call on for some tips in the face of winter’s inevitable onslaught of sniffles and more.
So when the risk is high, like it is now, and you want some extra support to help our immune system do its thing, Lisa’s tips are:

1. Seek out the following immune health loving whole foods and consume with great gusto!
Vitamin C rich foods: Citrus, kiwifruit, bell peppers, tomatoes, cruciferous vegetables Vitamin D rich foods: Egg yolk, oily fish i.e. sardines, salmon, cod liver oil, fish oil
(Active) Vitamin A-rich foods: Liver, pate, fish oil, eggs
Zinc-rich foods: Shellfish and red meats, along with hemp, flax, sesame and pumpkin seeds

2. Make sure your superhero nutrient stores are stored away
Our immune system craves the nutrients zinc, vitamins B, C, D and K, these nutrients act like building blocks in supporting immune health. When our immune system is triggered, there are also some powerful herbs that can help ward off ills and chills as the first sign of a niggle and also support recovery, including echinacea, beta glucan, Holy basil leaf, ginger and marshmallow root.
All of these herbs and nutrients can be found in BePure’s Immune Power Pack. Think of it as your seasonal survival kit for the whole family (ages 6+). It provides the body with the most important nutrients to support immune function, as well as Immune Action, a herbal formula for fast-acting, targeted relief in times of high need when we feel a first niggle of ills and chills.

3. Keep that body moving...
In terms of exercise, this can also either support or hinder our immune health. Too much exercise can create stress on the body, and fatigue the immune system, but we do need exercise to increase blood flow and support strengthening antibodies to help fight infection in our body.
"Strive for a mix of resistance-based training, cardiovascular work, and don’t forget mobility. Ideally, go for two days resistance, two days cardio and one day of mobility, with some outdoor active rest in between. It’s all about balance, so make sure your exercise regime is specific to your level of fitness and stress levels - not your friends or people you’re following on social media!’

4. ... slow it down...
While our bodies can withstand short spurts of stress - it’s when we’re overly stressed for a long time that our “fight and flight” response over-activates, flooding our system with cortisol and creating inflammation in the body. This isn’t something we want, as sustained, high levels of inflammation can lead to an overworked immune system that can’t properly do its job.
In her practice, Lisa recommends finding ways that work for you when it comes to decreasing stress. This includes using a combination of stress busting foods, finding routines that support your lifestyle, good sleep habits and hygiene, setting boundaries, mindfulness and breathwork. “Mindfulness is an incredibly effective tool in helping to balance our immune health. Look to yoga, meditation, breathwork, gratitude journaling, journaling, or any form of mindfulness that serves you. And despite all that’s going on, don’t be afraid to get out in nature!
Nature is a balm for the mind and enhances our microbiome through exposure to the many beneficial bacteria we breathe in, for instance when taking a walk in the bush. We need to keep both these things happy to keep our immune system in check, ” Lisa added.

5. ... and finally, snuggle down!
A study by the Sleep Foundation found a direct link between lack of quality sleep and compromised immunity. This is because our body has to use vital nutrients to repair ourselves from the lack of sleep, instead of fighting foreign bugs. In other words, if you aren’t sleeping well, you’re more likely to get sick.
Start getting better sleep by establishing a good bedtime routine. Unplug from electronic devices at least an hour or two before bed. Turn down bright lights. Keep the room temperature cool and consider taking a muscle and mind relaxing magnesium supplement.

For more from Lisa and to grab an Immune Power Pack to keep on hand, head here.


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