It’s cold and flu season which means now more than ever, we need to be taking care with how we’re treating ourselves and our bodies. Did you know I once went 8 and a half years without ever getting sick? That changed when I went on my bachelorette party (I earned that cold).
My secret for superhuman immunity is meditating. Let me explain how this works: by meditating twice a day every day, you decrease the stress stored in your body, which allows your immune system to function as it is meant to and therefore decreases your susceptibility to illness.
But there are also some additional steps you can take to stay healthy throughout the year. That’s why I’m coming at you with some of my favorite “health hacks” to keep you out of the doctor’s office:
Black Pepper Tea
This is an interesting trick my Ayurvedic doctor recommended, and I have used it with great results. When you’re feeling under the weather, or if it’s cold outside and you want to stave off illness, you can make this simple “tea” by boiling water, pouring it into your favorite mug, and adding five or six grinds of organic black pepper. Let all the pepper settle to the bottom of the mug, then drink the water; leave the pepper at the bottom of the mug. The pepper will induce a mild fever and help you sweat out the cold. Do this every two to three hours until your symptoms cease. (Pro tip: It’s best to have black pepper tea with food, as it may cause nausea on an empty stomach. Feel free to add your favorite tea as well— I love Celestial Seasonings’ Bengal Spice.)
Put a few drops of oregano oil in the back of your throat when you’re sick. Its natural antibacterial and antiviral properties can help knock out a cold or flu if you catch it early enough. Caution! Oregano oil is very strong, so don’t let it touch your lips or it may burn. (I imagine the burning sensation killing any unwanted pathogens on its way down.)
You may already have a super-easy natural health hack sitting in your kitchen: garlic. Garlic has antiviral and antibacterial properties and can be used for a wide range of ailments. You can eat a clove or chop it into pieces and swallow them like a pill to find relief from cold symptoms or to ward off infection.
Cucumber and mint
These are simple ingredients you can add to your diet to “cool” your body naturally by decreasing acidity and increasing alkalinity. These are prominent tools for changing the pH of the body in an Ayurvedic diet. They are cooling foods that also have detoxifying properties and can lower the level of acid or “heat” in the body.
Zinc Gluconate Spray, Elderberry Syrup & high doses of Vitamin D
These are all are also great ways to boost your immune system. (Be sure to check with your doctor before starting any new supplement, and know that the quality of the supplement matters.)
While meditation offers you a way to improve your health on multiple fronts, these Ayurvedic health tips may prove helpful to you in combating bacterial or viral illnesses. The trick here is to remember that in the case of meditation, “maximum” is not synonymous with “optimum.”
This is an excerpt from my bestselling book, Stress Less, Accomplish More which breaks down the neuroscience of stress AND teaches a gentler version of what I teach in zivaLIVE and zivaONLINE. Plus, I give a ton of exercises and health hacks like the ones above which you can start implementing immediately and begin performing at the top of your game.
Right now, the book is on sale at Amazon for less than $12 (!!!) making it the perfect stocking stuffer or holiday gift for anyone in your life who is interested in becoming the best version of themselves. It’s also a great gift for bosses and coworkers who could use a little less stress in their lives. Grab a copy (or two!) here.