‘How to improve your immune system?’- does this question pop up very frequently in your mind these days? Well, your diet and lifestyle habits are the pillars of your immune mechanism to fight off diseases, according to Ayurveda.
In this article, Dr. Zeel Gandhi, our Chief Ayurvedic Doctor at Vedix, helps us bring you some essential tips to boost your immunity naturally.
Best Ways To Strengthen Immunity
1. Stay Hydrated
Keeping yourself well hydrated maintains the moisture in your throat and mucous membrane, which act as a barrier against microbes. In Ayurveda, dehydration is called 'Apdathukshaya', which leads to the imbalance of salts, fluids, and minerals, in turn, resulting in unexpected behavior of your body.
Ayurveda recommends consuming adequate amounts of warm water and fluids daily until your urine turns pale yellow to prevent dehydration. Also, dehydration  can lead to indigestion, heart and kidney dysfunction, lowering of your physical strength, etc., which result in various complications and illnesses.
"As a general guideline, you should drink at least 2-3 liters of water every day and you may need more fluid intake when you do intense workouts or live in hot climatic conditions,’’ says Dr. Zeel.
2. Ayurvedic Diet For Immune Boosting
A well-balanced diet as per your dosha levels has a crucial role in maintaining your immunity  and fighting infections. Foods that are rich in vitamin C and antioxidants such as leafy greens, bright-colored fruits and vegetables like broccoli, tomatoes, lemon, cauliflower, sweet potato, capsicum, oranges, papaya, guava, kiwi, seeds, nuts, legumes, etc. boost your defense mechanism tremendously.
It is important to consume antioxidant-rich foods to control inflammation in your body by eliminating free radicals, which are linked to numerous chronic health conditions like cancers, heart diseases, etc. And, including foods with fiber content maintains your gut microbiome, boosting your immunity and preventing infections in your digestive tract.
‘’Ayurveda recommends regular detoxification through panchakarma cleanse or fasting to boost your immune system,’’ says Dr. Zeel.
Vedix Tip: Avoid excessive consumption of salty, sweet, sour, spicy, very hot or cold food, dry or fermented food, etc. Added sugars in your diet affect your immune system significantly by contributing to type 2 diabetes, obesity, and heart diseases.
3. Intake Immune Strengthening Herbs
A. Make a habit to start the day with a herbal tea made of tulsi, ginger, and long pepper.
B. Take at least 15ml of amla juice every day in the morning .
C. Use black pepper and turmeric in your meal preparations every day.
4. Reset Your Sleep Cycle
Your body engages in many biological processes like storing new information in the brain, detoxification, repairing damaged cells, regulating hormones and proteins, restoring energy, etc. during sleep. Your nerve cells across the body communicate and reorganize while you sleep to kick start your day with a healthy functioning system. Hence, getting adequate sleep  for at least 6-8 hours is crucial to boost your natural immunity.
As per Ayurveda, Vata dosha aggravates rapidly due to 'Ratrijaagaranath' or staying awake at night. This leads to the depletion of immunity due to the weakening of your body tissues. Also, lack of sleep increases inflammation in your body due to the build up of stress hormones.
To maintain your circadian rhythm, it is recommended to limit your screen time as the blue radiation emitted from electronic devices increases Vata dosha. Also, it is better to stick to a regular bedtime schedule and use a sleep mask or sleep in complete darkness to increase your sleep quality.
5. Manage Your Stress Levels
Manovyatha or mental stress disorders  impact your immune cell functions to a greater extent and cause inflammation. You need to make time for relieving stress caused by your tight-packed schedules to lift your lowered immune levels.
Make sure to dedicate some time to yourself daily by involving in stress management activities such as meditation, yoga, exercise, spending time with your dear ones, traveling, music, reading a book, or developing a hobby that interests you.
Ayurveda brings you exceptional head massage procedures with exotic herbal formulations, which you can opt regularly to keep your stress levels in control while bringing your elevated doshas to a balanced state.
6. Exercise Regularly
Exercising regularly not only keeps you fit, but also comes with many benefits that boost your immunity. It enhances your sleep quality and controls your stress levels. It is recommended to involve moderate exercising such as cycling, brisk walking, yoga, swimming, playing, jogging, etc. for at least half an hour daily to power up your vitality.
However, weakness and loss of body tissue are caused by Athi vyayamath or excessive exercising. This in turn lowers your immunity. Hence, it is important to keep your physical exhaustion to a moderate level.
7. Supplements For Immunity
When your diet lacks adequate nutrients, you can at least opt for supplements to keep your immunity on track. You can go for herbal supplements made of triphala, ginger, amla, etc., which promote deep nourishment with essential vitamins - B, C, D, etc. These help you in building a powerful immune system.
In a large-scale survey conducted in India in 2019, it was revealed that only 24% of people indicated to have a good immunity power without falling sick that year.
8. Ayurvedic Medications For Immunity
Based on your unique body needs and elevated doshas, Ayurvedic practitioners may suggest the following herbal formulations to improve immunity:
A. Amalaki rasayana
For detoxification and nourishment with Vitamin C.
B. Arogyavardini vati
For improving immunity against skin and liver disorders.
C. Ashwagandharishta/ Ashwagandhadi lehyam
For the strengthening of nerves, muscles, and internal organs.
D. Agastya haritaki rasayana
E. Brahma rasayana
For a chronic condition like cancer, fatigue, and immunity-boosting.
For respiratory health and general immunity strengthening.
G. Narasimha rasayanam
For overall body strength.
H. Lauha Bhasma
For cardio-vascular health.
I. Triphala guggulu
For vein and bowel health.
J. Vasantha Kusumakara rasa
For diabetes and urinary tract disorders.
Dr. Zeel says, ‘’Formulations such as ashwagandha ghrita, brahmi vati, brahmi ghrita, manasamitra vati, maha kalyanaka ghritha, saraswat churna, saraswatharishtam, etc. are recommended for general immunity building.’’
9. Moderate Your Alcohol Intake & Stop Smoking
In Ayurveda, 'Athimadyapanath' or excessive intake of alcohol  is linked to the hampering of the vascular, liver, and mental system in the body. Alcohol consumption weakens your defense system and also increases the risk of lung infections.
Also, tobacco consumption from smoking damages your lungs as well as your overall immune system and may result in a variety of chronic diseases. Dr. Zeel recommends keeping yourself away from passive or secondhand smoking too.
Strengthening Immunity In Women During Pregnancy
New moms are more prone to the ailments caused by aggravated Vata dosha as pregnancy increases Vata dosha in women.
1. As a folklore Ayurvedic practice, nursing mothers are given 'Gond ke laddu', a laddu made of dry fruits from the second week till 3-4 months. This helps in boosting the immunity and strength of the pregnant women as well as new moms by balancing elevated Vata dosha.
2. Dashamoolarishtam, which helps in reducing inflammation and boost immunity can also be given in the initial couple of months.
3. During rainy and winter seasons, it is advised to treat new mothers with Jeerakarishtam to maintain immune strength by maintaining body warmth.
Ayurvedic Medication To Improve Immunity In Kids
For children, Ayurveda recommends the following formulations to work on stronger immunity building:
1. Swarna Vacha (Golden sweet flag)
This herb can be administered to infants orally by mixing it with honey. Besides building a stronger immune system, swarna vacha aids in enhancing the grasping power and dealing with speech and neurodegenerative disorders in toddlers.
2. Swarna Bindu Prashana
It is a solution made by combining gold calx and herbal ghee prepared from brahmi, ashwagandha, etc. It is given to children in the form of drops for the improvement of immune strength, concentration, and memory.
Use any of the Ayurvedic herbal medications mentioned in this article to boost your immune system as per the advice of a general physician or Ayurvedic practitioner.
The Last Word
Your immunity is responsible for the tolerance of your body and mind towards environmental threats. Besides treating your diseases naturally by bringing your elevated doshas to a balanced state, Ayurveda focuses on your health maintenance by boosting your immunity. At Vedix, we customize Ayurvedic immunity-boosting ingestibles as per your doshas and unique needs.Know Your Dosha Now