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How to naturally boost your immune system

With the threat of epidemic viruses such as swine flu facing us every day, people worldwide are more concerned than ever regarding their health. Ideally prevention is better than cure and studies show the capability and efficiency of our body’s immune system is directly related to the food we eat. So Femme Slender has teamed up leading nutrition advisors to come up with the best ways of boosting your immune system with specially formulated tips and a meal plan to help you do so naturally through your diet:

Tip 1: Beta-carotene Found in foods such as carrots, green leafy vegetables, mangoes, oranges and melons, beta-carotene is a powerful immune booster that helps to fight against bacterial and viral infections. Research shows there is a direct link to the amount of beta-carotene consumed and the amount of protective immune cells we have in our bodies.

Tip 2: Anti-oxidants Found in foods like blackberries, blueberries and pomegranate juice anti-oxidants are responsible for protecting the body against harmful free radicals thus ensuring you are better able to fight infections.

Tip 3: EGCG Specifically found in green tea, Epigallo Catechin Gallate, or EGCG as its known, is a form of catechin which has been shown to increase a specific type of immune cell in the body, a possible reason as to why in many studies green tea has been shown to slow the spread of flu virus.

Tip 4: L-theanine Found in black tea, studies show this may help the body's immune response to fight infection by boosting the disease-fighting capacity. The study (Brigham and Women's Hospital, published 2003) included a 4 week trial with 11 coffee drinkers and 10 tea drinkers, who consumed 600 millilitres of coffee or black tea daily. Blood tests found that the production of anti-bacterial proteins was up to five times higher in the tea-drinkers, an indicator of a stronger immune response.

Tip 5: Probiotics Found in sauerkraut and certain yoghurts, probiotics go to the digestive tract (where 70%-80% of our immune cells are found) and ward off harmful germs that have entered the mouth.

Tip 6: Lymph System Known as the body’s sewage system, the lymph system is integral to the body’s immunity. If it was shut down for only 24 hours, you would die simply from the build up of toxins in the body. It works by surrounding every cell in the body and removing dead cells, blood proteins and any other toxins and excreting them from the body. The toxins are then removed from the body through our waste products, mucus, or our skin. Furthermore as well as acting as a filter, the lymph system destroys ‘alien’ cells such as viruses, bacteria and even cancer cells.

However unlike the circulatory system of the body which comes complete with a pump (the heart) to make sure it functions efficiently, the lymph system doesn’t have a pump and can only be stimulated through heavy breathing.

The lymph system can be stimulated through the following exercise:

  • Breath in for a count of 1 second

  • Hold for 4 seconds

  • Breath out for a count of 2 seconds

Doing this 3 times a day will make a noticeable difference to your energy and ability to ward off illness.

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