A good immune system is the ‘anti-virus’ defense against any disease. The Sanskrit word for immunity — ‘Vyadhikshamatva’ means forgiveness of disease. According to Ayurveda good health is not related to just not being sick. Wellness is state of experiencing good health. Apart from balancing the doshas — Vata, Pitta, and Kapha, as well as making sure our digestive fire, called Agni, is working to its utmost, we should start practicing some very good techniques that will help boost immunity.
Keep the immune system in proper balance by eating the right foods. A weak immune system causes all types of diseases. Also, an immune response becomes overactive or misdirected, targeting the body’s own tissues for foreign invaders. Our diet plays a vital role in balancing this ‘fighting response’ within the body. Consuming leafy greens, highly pigmented fruits, whole grains can give the body exactly what it needs to stay strong.
1 – Cook with immune-boosting spices : Cook your food in a way that doesn’t disturb the food’s natural goodness. For instance, if you add mild spices to cooked vegetables, grains, the food will convert more quickly to ojas. Spices add good flavor and they support digestion and make the nutrients easily available to the body. Different spices also have specific immune-boosting properties. For eg, Turmeric has an immune-modulating effect, because it has detoxifying properties and enhances the intelligence of the immune cells similarly Cumin burns Ama. Black pepper clears the channels so ojas can reach the deeper tissues.
Eat consistently, at regular times throughout the day: Regular meals enable the body to absorb nourishment and feel energized. This also increases digestive fire. Add Medicinal herbs to your diet like Basil, Garlic, Ginger, Turmeric, Olive leaf, Amla and more which will help your body to defend itself against invaders. Many keep your white blood cell count high, and others support the vital organs.
Detox: In Ayurveda, ama (store toxins from undigested food) is one of the primary reasons for diseases to develop. Indigestion and ama formation prevent nutrients from reaching the tissues and weakens immune function. Be sure to detox regularly if you consume lots of unhealthy foods, are exposed to many environmental toxins, or don’t eat a Sattvic diet. While you don’t have to be a vegan or vegetarian, strictly, those dietary practices are in alignment with Ayurvedic wisdom. Choose easy-to-digest organic and fresh foods. Foods that are processed, canned, frozen or packaged are harder to digest, they also include harmful ingredients such as chemical preservatives and thus create Ama.
Organically grown foods are best because not only are they free of harsh chemicals, but they also contain more minerals. Vegetarian proteins such homemade cheese, milk, and pulses (split-mung dhal, lentils, and other small, split beans) enhance ojas and immunity. Meat is not a recommended protein because it is difficult to digest and creates Ama
3 – Life style modifications
Get Good Sleep: Adequate sleep is especially important and essential for anyone who wants to enhance immunity and resist disease. The body is very busy while you are resting. Deep sleep helps the immune system to release proteins called cytokines, some of which help promote sleep. A balanced cycle of rest and activity help our immune cells to regenerate properly. Lack of sleep interrupts this cyclic process and can cause increased rates of diabetes, heart disease, depression, and other illnesses.
Do Yoga and Meditate: Yoga and meditation positively affect the immunity response in the body. They do so primarily by lowering stress.
Pranayama: If stress is the primary factor compromising your immune system, Nadi Shodhana (Alternate Nostril Breathing) is the powerful support activity that you need to start right away. Prana, the vital breath, is the subtle essence of the life force that animates each of us. It energizes every cell and tissue throughout our body and is stimulated and carried on by the breath. Prana restores fluidity and vitality to the subtle energy channels of the body, releases accumulated tension, and supports the nervous system as a whole — all while digesting and eliminating stagnation and Ama.
Ayurveda teaches us that ojas and strong immunity are the natural outcomes of good health, which depends on Agni, a healthy diet, a supportive lifestyle, and a balanced nervous system. it is all about you — your unique strengths and vulnerabilities, and your personal path toward healing.