Here’s the thing about the novel virus; there is no real valid cure, yet, to fight this infection except upping your immunity. Our immune system is the first line of defense against an attack by a foreign pathogen. So you need to do whatever it is you can do to improve the resistance of the body against infections-eat diverse, healthier, and more nutritious food; include immunity-boosting herbs in your daily intake; include meditation and breathing to keep stress at bay at all times. According to Ayurveda, there are specific herbs that are known to improve body’s resistance to diseases. Here we list the top five herbs that can help you keep life-threatening viruses and pathogens at bay by revitalizing your immune system.
1. Ashwagandha-the root herb
The roots of Ashwagandha or winter cherry have been in use for over 3000 years for its time tested physiological and mental benefits including stress relief, balancing Kapha and Vata doshas, stabilizing healthy blood sugar levels, helping with depression symptoms, anti-aging benefits, helping with muscle mass and improving fertility.
It boosts immunity by improving the body’s response to stress, which is known to weaken immunity. Ashwagandha is a key adaptogen which plays a key role in how the body responds to stress. It helps reduce the secretion of cortisol, the stress hormone, thereby keeping a host of other lifestyle and stress-related diseases at bay. High cortisol can lead to weight gain and spike in blood sugar too. Ashwagandha is also known to contain withanolides that provide the herb extraordinary anti-inflammatory properties.
2. Amruth or giloy-herbs for super immunity
Yet another power herb that has been flying off the racks is Amruth or giloy, known particularly for its immunity-boosting benefit. Usually, our bodies experience fever or higher temperatures as a response to an attack by pathogens or due to the accumulation of ama or toxins in the body, according to Ayurveda. The antipyretic property in these herbs are known to help with many types of fever. Fever is also known to be one of the symptoms in COVID-19 infections. Giloy also comes loaded with antioxidants. These antioxidants help reduce oxidative stress in the body which can affect the immunity in the body.
Among other benefits, giloy helps you manage stress and anxiety in your workplace or personal life. Two tablets a day also help your eyesight, is good for your bone health and is very beneficial for your digestive system. It helps eliminate digestive toxins from the body that may interfere and weaken your body’s immunity, according to Ayurveda.
3. Amla or gooseberries
Yet another indispensable gift of nature that is a must in your kitchen cabinet is the amla or gooseberries, which are a storehouse of antioxidants and vitamins known to present a strong defense against viral infections and boost your immunity. Amla is an important ingredient in many Ayurvedic formulations used for treating multiple diseases in India and abroad. It is known in Ayurveda to have antiviral, antibacterial, cardio-protective, gastro-protective, anti-inflammatory, analgesic and antipyretic properties.
Studies have shown that having amla or gooseberries helps increase the count of white blood cells, which are essentially the fighter cells against foreign pathogens, thus supporting the body’s immune response. Its immune function is given a double boost by its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Gooseberries are blessed with antioxidants, vitamins C and A, and other important minerals and compounds like calcium, chromium, phosphorus, carotene, niacin, riboflavin, and thiamine.
The chromium present in amla helps with bad cholesterol in the body and is known in Ayurveda to help boost heart health. It also helps with the respiratory tract and is supportive in helping with respiratory illnesses like asthma and bronchitis. Gooseberries are also known to help revive the taste when there is loss of taste due to fever. It is an effective traditional remedy for supporting healthy pancreatic function and managing healthy blood sugar levels. Amla also helps absorb calcium better in the body.
4. Brahmi or Indian pennywort
This exquisite power herb, Bacoppa monnieri, that grows at heights above 1800 meters, finds an important mention in one of the most reputed texts on Ayurveda called Sushruta Samhita for its many medicinal uses. Studies show Brahmi extracts stimulate an immune response by increasing the WBC count.
“Herbal remedies based on Echinacea, Brahmi, or Ashwagandha can enhance immune function by increasing immunoglobulin production,” scientists from Kyushu University found, “…these herbal medicines might regulate antibody production by augmenting both Th1 and Th2 cytokine production." Cytokines are immunomodulating protein agents.
Brahmi is also known to be an excellent supplement to help support a healthy brain function, learning, and memory. The anti-inflammatory effect of Brahmi has been shown to be equivalent to NSA drug Mefenamic acid, according to studies. Brahmi is known to be a powerful supplement for helping with anxiety and support quicker wound healing. It also strengthens connective tissues and weakened veins.
Do note, Brahmi may be counter indicative for women trying to get pregnant.
One of the most popular master spices is turmeric. It has curcumin that is known to boost your immune system by improving your body’s immunomodulation, which is regulating the immune system of the body to achieve the desired therapeutic goal. The curcumin compound also has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties along with being a rich source of antioxidants. Studies have proved curcumin’s inhibitory action against specific types of pathogens, particularly ones found to be causing digestive infections.
Turmeric extract is also known to help with the respiratory tracts. It is recommended in Ayurveda for managing many infections. Turmeric’s inhibitory action against pathogens affecting critical organs has made it a popular Ayurvedic go-to in times of crisis as a preventative measure.
If you are looking for an authentic place to source the above herbs from, some of which are rare to find, inside the Sri Sri Tattva Immunity Kit, you can find all the five power herbs in delightful easy-to-carry packaging.
Published by Ruchira Roy
This content on the Sri Sri Tattva blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician, or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Any links to third party websites is provided as a convenience only and the Sri Sri Tattva Blog is not responsible for their content.