16 Ways to Naturally Improve Your Immune System Health

February 24th, 2013 by Loretta Lanphier, NP, BCTN, CN, CH, HHP

16 Ways to Naturally Improve Your Immune System Health

When discussing how to improve immune system health, I always like to begin with the following excellent quote from Dr. Lawrence Wilson:

“Factors that impair the immune system include nutrient deficiencies, contaminated air, water and food, unhealthy lifestyles, and too much exposure to harmful microbes. Other factors that weaken the immune system are negative attitudes and emotions and the presence of toxic metals, toxic chemicals and biological toxins in the body. Others are sluggish metabolism, lack of rest and sleep, excessive stress or too much exercise. As these causative factors are removed or corrected, the immune system improves.”

It’s now common knowledge that at least 70% of your immune system resides in the digestive tract. When your immune system health is not functioning at optimum levels, there is an immediate need to focus on two areas: (1) your digestive tract and (2) your liver, which is the primary filter of the body. There is not one supplement or modality alone that can effectively restore immune system health even though many would have you believe differently. I have personally found that to help your immune system heal, you must address proper cleansing, healthy diet, exercise, hormones, restful sleep, quality supplementation, and herbs. All of these have a synergistic effect while providing the immune system the help and support it needs to repair.

RELATED: Calculate Your Immune System Function

16 Ways to Naturally Improve Your Immune System Health

1. Digestive tract cleansing and Liver/gallbladder cleansing

Digestive tract and liver-gallbladder cleansing is a must, especially at the beginning of fall and spring, as well as after a round of antibiotics or other prescription medications. If you have never performed a cleanse, I suggest first doing a digestive trace cleanse then three back-to-back liver cleanses and then one digestive tract/liver/gallbladder cleanse every spring and fall. For digestive tract cleansing, Oxy-Powder is one of the best oxygen-cleansing products on the market today.


2. Parasite – Harmful Organism Cleanse

Unfortunately, parasites are easier to pick up than most people realize; in fact, everyone has parasites. Many worm parasites have a long life span and can cause chronic infections. When infected, you can remain asymptomatic for many years while these pests are setting up house, continually making babies, and even going to the bathroom in your body. Some worms can live a long time and secrete things that will control your immune system, tricking it into thinking they are actually part of your body. Using several rounds of a parasite/harmful organism cleanse enables the ability to get the entire life-cycle of parasites. I highly recommend and personally use a harmful organism cleanse.

3. Very healthy diet

Robust immune system health depends significantly on a healthy diet full of fresh, organic fruits and vegetables. A nutrient-deficient diet, on the other hand, can cause your entire system to turn upside down, beginning from a sluggish digestive system to a distressed elimination system—both of which can bring a healthy immune system down. Eliminate gluten, refined sugar, processed dairy, and most pre-packaged foods. Too much refined sugar can bring your immune system down and can ruin your health. Overconsumption of refined sugar is likely the most significant reason many people get sick around holidays. Cook at home with fresh and organic ingredients and try to eliminate dining out for a while. Many people find that removing gluten from their diet helps with weight loss as well as with other types of lifestyle health issues such as diabetes. Consuming green leafy vegetables every day is excellent for your immune system. Put a capful of organic raw apple cider in each glass of purified water that you drink throughout the day. Incorporate essential fatty acids into your diet. Eat as close to nature as possible. Drink pure, clean water or prepare some of the organic fruit water recipes.

Top 12 Foods For Immune Health

4. High-Quality Probiotics

When you consider the fact that 70% of your immune system dwells in your gut, perpetuating a balance of probiotic bacteria is necessary for elevating your immune defenses. Remember that the good bacteria in your gut are known as probiotics and have the responsibility of supporting digestion, fighting against harmful organisms, and keeping your immune system health in check. I highly suggest using a spore-bearing probiotic such as Latero-Flora taken at night before bed.

5. Enzymes

Enzymes aid in digesting food, transporting nutrients, carrying away toxic wastes, purifying the blood, and converting protein. On a larger scale, enzymes also slow the aging process and support our body’s wellness and homeostasis. Though our body produces enzymes naturally, our natural enzyme production begins to decline after age 25. As we age, our body produces fewer enzymes, and eventually, we may become enzyme deficient. At this point, many people begin to notice the effects of aging, including joint pain and circulatory problems, slower injury and wound healing, and increased internal inflammation and disease. In terms of healthy immune system function, enzymes are vital. White blood cells are especially rich in enzymes, which help them to digest and destroy any foreign organisms – such as viruses and bacteria that try to harm our bodies. Every day, millions of enzymes within our bodies help to renew, sustain, and protect us, making them very necessary for a healthy immune system.

6. Selenium

Selenium is an important mineral essential to health immunological activity. Good sources of selenium are goat’s milk, free-range eggs, Pau d’Arco Tea, or a quality selenium supplement. I personally recommend and use a plant-based selenium supplement extracted from mustard seed and containing other natural co-nutrients from the plant. It is highly bioavailable and vegan-friendly, and a powerful antioxidant that performs several critical functions within the body.

7. Pau d’Arco Tea

Pau d’Arco tea contains selenium, which is one of our body’s natural defenses against yeast infections. Its antifungal action can aid in the elimination of candida. Because of its antifungal properties, it is useful for fighting fungi that promotes athlete’s foot and other skin infections caused by fungi. Pau d’arco also has a cleansing ability and possibly very useful for relieving intestinal infections, destroying parasites, and restoring colon health. Many infection-fighting substances known as naphthoquinones seem to kill certain disease-causing bacteria without destroying beneficial bacteria, making it an excellent natural antibiotic. As a preventative, pau d’arco helps build our immune system with the stimulation of macrophages that fight disease. The old Roman phrase, caveat emptor- – let the buyer beware, is applicable when buying Lapacho, Pau d’arco, or Taheebo. As with many newly discovered helpful treatments, the use of Lapacho is often without appropriate background info. Unscrupulous suppliers have found it very profitable to grind up both the inner and worthless, bitter outer bark, and sometimes the entire tree, often without regard as to whether or not it was the correct Lapacho tree. This impure or even worthless material is shipped to unwary American packagers and sold to the public as Pau d’arco, Taheebo, Ipe Roxo, or Lapacho. Fortunately, there is also very high-quality Lapacho in the U.S. The challenge facing the consumer, to achieve maximum effectiveness, is to know which of all the brands available is genuinely 100% inner lining of the Red or Purple Lapacho Tree. While there are numerous varieties of Lapacho trees in South America, only the inner lining of the tree has known medical value. It is this inner lining (or phloem) that carries nutrients made by the leaves to other parts of the tree and is, with the cambium layer (where all the new cells are produced), the “life” of the tree.

8. Transfer Factor

In my opinion, one of the best immune supplements on the market today. The company that makes Transfer Factor is multi-level-marketing, and as such, the product is expensive. Transfer Factor is one of a tiny handful of MLM products that, in my opinion, is worth the money, especially for those already dealing with compromised immune systems. Google 4Life Transfer Factor for more information.

Vitality C -high dose vitamin c

9. Herbal Medicines

Star anise can help the immune system protect the body against some different strains of the flu virus. Star anise is also helpful in reducing chronic pain, cough, urinary infections, and respiratory infections. Another powerful herb to consider is Anamu. It combines antifungal, antibacterial, antiviral, and antitumoral capabilities into a powerful enhancer of the body’s immune defenses. For many centuries, people used Anamu as a remedy for anxiety. Because it actually stimulates the production of T-cells, it is one of the most powerful herbs you can use to boost your immune system.

RELATED: Enhancing Your Immune System Naturally

10. Multi-Vitamin Mineral Complex

An organic, multi-vitamin/mineral supplement is foundational and necessary for everyone – children to seniors. intraMAX is a liquid organic multi-vitamin/mineral complex. intraMAX is also organic and non-GMO.

11. Vitamin C 

Vitamin C helps with stress and may act as an antioxidant. Antioxidants can help to combat free radicals, better equipping your immune system to combat invading bacteria and microbes. I use and recommend Vitality C with GMS Metabolites. Use the bowel tolerance test when deciding how much Vitamin C to take.

12. Vitamin D3

Vitamin D3 is another nutrient that keeps your immune system health very strong. Get out in the sun for at least 30 minutes each day or during the winter months take an organic Vitamin D3 supplement such as Suntrex D3. Most people need at least 2000 – 5000 IU per day, more for those fighting illness. It’s a good idea to get your Vitamin D3 levels checked before beginning supplementation and then again at 4-6 months.

13. Reduce Your Stress Levels

We live in a very fast-paced and stressful world. Chronic stress is quickly becoming known as the real “silent killer” in adults and children. “Some kinds of stress — very short-term, that last only a matter of minutes — redistribute cells in the bloodstream in a way that could be helpful,” says Suzanne Segerstrom, an associate professor of psychology at the University of Kentucky and has conducted studies on stress and the immune system. “But once stress starts to last a matter of days, there are changes in the immune system that aren’t so helpful. And the longer that stress lasts, the more potentially harmful those changes are.” This makes it imperative to deal effectively with stress issues before they become a factor for illness or disease. Walking is a great stress reliever. Activities such as gardening, rebounding, hobbies, sports, etc. are also good for relieving stress naturally. Talking to a trusted friend, practitioner, or pastor can also be helpful. Working on anger, resentment, victim mentality, and other toxic emotions are also healing to the entire body.

14. Restful Sleep

Adequate and restful sleep is VERY IMPORTANT for repairing, healing, and even boosting your immune system. Lack of sleep reduces the activity of T-cells (a crucial type of immune cell) and weakens your immune response. Studies of identical twins show the sleep-deprived twin had increased inflammation markers and unfavorable immune markers. Going to bed (sleeping — not reading, watching TV, or on your laptop) by 10:30 PM every night goes a long way in restoring stress hormones to healthy levels thus supporting healthy immune function.

15. Chiropractic

Chiropractic is more than cracking bones. Frequent chiropractic adjustments can also improve your immune system as well as provide stress relief. Your nervous system and immune system are connected and work together creating optimal responses for the body to heal properly. Neural dysfunctions due to spinal misalignment stress the body, creating changes that can lead to a poorly coordinated immune response. Chiropractic adjustments can boost the coordinated responses of the nervous system and the immune system.

16. Massage Therapy

Unlocking your self-healing modalities through the use of hands-on healing techniques such as massage therapy may help to decrease stress, improve circulation and lymphatic drainage as well as enhance overall immune function. Lymphatic drainage techniques such as dry skin brushing, deep breathing, and rebounding are also very helpful to help the body effectively eliminate toxins.

BONUS #1 – Hormone Balance

In order for your immune system to work properly, balanced hormone levels are importantAdrenal health is very important. Your adrenal glands (also known as suprarenal glands) have a significant influence on your immune system. They produce hormones that are vital to several metabolic functions, including DHEA, progesterone, testosterone, cortisol, and epinephrine. Your adrenal gland’s production of cortisol is essential to maintain immunity. Some autoimmune diseases happen because of low unbalanced ratio levels between progesterone and estrogen. Your progesterone balance also has an effect on proper T-cell and NK cell activity. During pregnancy, progesterone aids immune system development in the baby, a possible reason progesterone levels are high during the third trimester of pregnancy.

BONUS #2 – Lymphatic Drainage

Your lymphatic system works with your circulatory system to deliver nutrients and oxygen from the blood to the cells as well as removing toxins and waste from these cells. When the lymphatic system becomes blocked, you become defenseless against attacks by viruses and bacteria. Lymphatic drainage improves the functioning of the entire lymphatic system, which plays an important role in the body’s immune system response. You can achieve this by gentle, rhythmical, circling movements of the skin that stimulate the contractions of the lymphatic vessels. Dry skin brushingrebounding and mindful breathing exercises can activate lymph and interstitial fluid circulation as well as stimulate the functioning of the immune and parasympathetic nervous systems. The benefits of these gentle self-healing therapies include reducing insomnia, detoxification of the entire body, and relief from chronic pain and can be compared to using a plunger on a slow-moving or stopped up drain.

BONUS #3 – Iodine

Iodine is excellent for supporting your immune system. Every cell in your body relies on iodine. No bacteria, virus, or mycoplasma can survive or adapt to an environment that is rich in iodine. Iodine also gives tremendous support to your thyroid, which is very important for supporting the immune system.

It’s a good idea to obtain your iodine from food. Foods such as seafood, seaweed, and sea vegetables are all amazing sources of iodine, even in small amounts. If foods sourced from the sea are not your thing, you can supplement with an organic nascent iodine supplement. We take two dropperfuls before lunch. For a severe situation, we take two dropperfuls both morning and afternoon, before 3:00 PM. If you experience side-effects, back your dosage down, and carefully monitor any side-effects. As always, consult with an iodine-literate healthcare practitioner about the amount that is right for you.

Improve Your Immune System Health Today

Your body is bombarded every day with endocrine-disrupting chemicals, toxins, environmental pollution, noise pollution, and even electromagnetic frequencies — all of which, over time, can have a detrimental effect on your immune system health. While the above suggestions to help boost your immune system health are important, not all are necessary. Always speak with a trusted healthcare provider who knows your health history and is knowledgeable in ways to help you naturally improve your immune system health. In my opinion, a very healthy diet and cleansing are foundational in supporting your immune system and in helping the body to get well and stay well.

Let’s walk away from the belief that illness is normal. It doesn’t have to be. There’s no reason one should be laid-up multiple times every year with colds, the flu, or other illnesses such as strep throat. If you find yourself coming down with every sickness that’s “going around”, it’s definitely time to pay attention to your immune system health. Believe it or not, there really are individuals who stay healthy for years on end. Many people say they are blessed with “healthy genes,” but is that the real reason? Probably not. Most likely it’s because they choose to focus on their immune system health every day by eating a very healthy plant-based diet, exercising, using high-quality supplements, focusing on restful sleep, and avoiding toxic environments as much as possible — all of which are very powerful in transforming one’s health. There’s no reason you can’t do the same.


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Loretta Lanphier is a Naturopathic Practitioner (Traditional), Certified Clinical Nutritionist, Holistic Health Practitioner, and Certified Clinical Herbalist as well as the CEO / Founder of Oasis Advanced Wellness in The Woodlands TX. She has studied and performed extensive research in health science, natural hormone balancing, anti-aging techniques, nutrition, natural medicine, weight loss, herbal remedies, non-toxic cancer support, and is actively involved in researching new natural health protocols and products.  A 17-year stage 3 colon cancer survivor, Loretta is able to relate to both-sides-of-the-health-coin as patient and practitioner when it comes to health and wellness. “My passion is counseling others about what it takes to keep the whole body healthy using natural and non-toxic methods.” Read Loretta’s health testimony Cancer: The Path to Healing. Loretta is Contributor and Editor of the worldwide E-newsletter Advanced Health & Wellness. Check out Oasis Advanced Wellness and our natural skincare products at Oasis Serene Botanicals.
†Results may vary. Information and statements made are for education purposes and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. Oasis Advanced Wellness/OAWHealth does not dispense medical advice, prescribe, or diagnose illness. The views and nutritional advice expressed by Oasis Advanced Wellness/OAWHealth are not intended to be a substitute for conventional medical service. If you have a severe medical condition or health concern, see your physician of choice.

























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