17 Tips to Boost Your Immune System
“To stay fully spirited, joyful, and exuberant is also a simple way of making your immune system and the body to function much better.”
Sadhguru: Viruses are not a new entry into our lives. We literally live an ocean of bacteria and viruses. The important thing is that this particular virus is new to our system, so our bodies are struggling with it. To see that we can produce the necessary antibodies and become capable of handling it - as we have become capable of handling everything else - there are a few things we can do. It is not that this is a cure for coronavirus, but if these simple things can be practiced, you will see in six to eight weeks' time, your immune system will be at least a few percentage points higher. This is what you need to go through this situation without causing fatality to yourself and people around you.
Before you begin your morning sadhana, on an empty stomach, you must take eight to twelve neem leaves, chew them and keep them in your mouth. It is very important that it stays in your mouth as it is most effective here. Chew it for one to two hours. Do not wash it out or swallow it, just let it just be there in the mouth. Do your sadhana with that.
Consume turmeric every day in the morning and allow it to stay in the stomach at least for one hour before you eat anything. This will do wonders for you. It is best to have organic turmeric.
3. Mahavilva Leaves
There is something called mahavilva leaves which are available in the Western Ghats region. If you can eat about three to five leaves a day in the morning, that will also enhance your immune system.
4. Nilavembu Kashayam
We are distributing Nilavembu kashayam across the villages near Isha Yoga Center. We have noticed in this part of Tamil Nadu where we are working, there has not been a single case in the last two months. One thing is the effective social distance policing by us and the authorities, as well as the Nilavembu kashayam. If you maintain these protocols, very easily you can enhance your immune system, because ultimately that is the only defence you have.
5. Hot Drinks
Drink hot water about four to five times a day. It could just be plain hot water or you can put a little bit of coriander or mint, or you can add a pinch of turmeric, or even a little lime juice, and drink that regularly.
6. Raw Amla or Indian Gooseberry
This is the amla season, that is the bettad nallikai for Kannada people. This is not those huge, golf ball kind of amla. That is all hybrid amla, which is also okay if you do not find anything else. But otherwise, what grows in the hills is small in size. You just smash one amla, put a little salt on it and just chew it. You must keep it in your mouth for one to two hours, as it is most effective there.
7. Amla with Honey and Peppercorns
Soak amla (gooseberry, or nellikai) in honey overnight, along with some broken black or green peppercorns. Have about three spoons three times a day. It works best if that is the first thing that you take, when you are on an empty stomach. If you do this, in four to eight weeks, one can see significant betterment of one's immune system.
8. Raw Mango
This is also the beginning of the raw mango season. Do not wait for it to ripen, eat the raw mango. It is not a preventive for coronavirus, but it can up boost the immune system a little bit.
There are traditional offerings like Jeeva Legium or chyawanprash that also build the immune system. If you have old people at home, beyond sixty years of age, it is good to start them on chyawanprash.
10. Bhairavi Raksha
We are creating what is called as a Bhairavi Raksha. This is done with the science of Rasa Vaidya or Indian alchemy and it is done in a certain way that you can actually wear this bracelet on your arm. They come in different sizes so if you want, you can wear it on your calf muscle too. It is a consecrated piece which will definitely boost your immune system.
11. Prithvi Prema Seva
Most people develop a relationship with the soil only after they die, but it is very important to develop a relationship with the soil when you are alive. Especially now with this virus around. We call this prithvi prema seva. That means getting involved with the soil in a very loving manner. By doing this, your ability to resist these kind of invasions upon your life will be greatly enhanced. It is not just enough if you are alive; it is important that you live strong.
If you have a small patch of a garden you can do it there or you can volunteer to work in someone else's garden. They will get free labor but do not think that they are getting more; you are getting much more because you being connected with the soil will make a phenomenal difference for the way your physical body functions. Everyone must make use of this somewhere - at least go clean the streets. Do something! It is very important to put your hands into the soil. Otherwise, those of you who are too well-to-do but do not want to be seen doing any work because it may create a wrong image for your affluence, you can have a mud bath! Yes, that is also one way.
12. Chant Yoga Yoga Yogeshwaraya to Generate Ushna
The “Yoga Yoga Yogeshwaraya” chant is about generating samat prana or ushna in the system. There is something called as ushna and sheeta, which in the English language translates into heat and cold, but that is not what it exactly means. It indicates that direction, but it does not mean that. If you generate enough samat prana and create ushna in the system, your immune system will function much better. This chant will generate a certain amount of strength in the immune system, because it generates heat.
Let this be very clear that this is not treatment for coronavirus, nor is it a prevention. "I did my chant, so I can go and do irresponsible things" - it is not going to work like that. These are things you do over a period of time to strengthen your system, so that when the next virus comes, you may be in a little better place to handle it.
13. Practice Isha Kriya
The basic mistake we have made is that we have no distinction between what is “me” and what is “mine.” What I gather can be mine, we are not disputing that right now, but it cannot be me. If I say this piece of clothing is me, then obviously, I have lost it. Similarly, if I say that this body and the content of this mind that I accumulated - what I know and do not know - is myself, then I have a problem. Well, it is playing havoc with your life on a daily basis, but in moments of crisis like this, it may show up in a strong way. For this we have a simple solution: Isha Kriya, a simple way of separating what is you and what is not you. It is available free for everyone to make use of. If you bring this much consciousness into you, as to what is me, what is not me, it will be very easy to ride through times like this.
14. Two Simple Practices to Enhance Immunity and Oxygen Levels
Simha Kriya is a simple Yogic practice which is very relevant to those who are not doing any other powerful process like Shakti Chalana Kriya. Simha Kriya enhances lung capacity and helps improve immunity. Above all, if you can do it for the next five days and suddenly one day you are not able to do it, this means that you definitely have some respiratory problem. It may not be coronavirus, it could be anything else. If you suddenly find that you are not able to do it, you must have yourself checked.
There is also an asana or Yogic posture called Sashtanga. In this posture, the lung functions in a certain way, enhancing oxygen levels in the system. This is one of the most common asanas which has gotten distorted in many ways in common use; almost every devotee is supposed to go into this posture, but due to lack of instruction and understanding, people are just lying down on the ground. The significance of this posture is that you touch eight points of your body to the ground and hold it there. After that, you can relax your body so that the entire body touches the floor and get into what is called as Makarasana.
Especially because most of you are wearing masks right now, there is a danger of decreased oxygen levels, even without infections. If you do this regimen four to five times in a day, your oxygen levels will definitely be up. It is not an absolute cure or a preventive, but our health is not an absolute either. Our health is a consequence of many incremental steps that we take. Please take this step in these pandemic times and ensure to whatever extent possible that you do not become a victim or a spreader.
Conditions for Practice:
- Sashtanga and Makarasana should be done on an empty stomach condition.
- Pregnant women should not do Sashtanga and Makarasana. However, they can do Simha Kriya.
15. Keep Up Your Sadhana
The only thing that we actually know is that those who have a strong immune system will survive while those who do not will be affected by this COVID-19. We do not know anything else about the virus except that one thing. For that one thing you must keep up your practices, which will make sure your immune system is very high. Researchers from Indiana University, University of Virginia, Harvard Medical School and others have conducted studies on the Isha Yoga practices and they have manifested what is happening at that level where the inflammatory, BDNF and other markers are clearly showing that the immune levels are much higher for people who are doing the practices. Everyone should keep up the practice.
16. Get Enough Physical Activity
Now people are at home. If they just sit around, and through the day if they are eating something or drinking alcohol, they will make themselves much more susceptible. One simple thing is to stay physically active. This is a good time for us to use these few weeks to get fit. If you do not know anything else, at least simply jog on the spot every day at different times - maybe fifteen minutes at a time, five to six times a day. The body will try to handle things better.
17. Keep Yourself Joyful
Mental distress is definitely one way of putting down the immune system. To stay fully spirited, joyful, and exuberant is also a simple way of making your immune system and the body to function much better.
A joyful, sensible, and responsible human being can deal with situations much better than those who are dead serious about everything. Especially if you are in panic, you are paralyzed. It is very important that all your faculties are in place, that your body and your brain function and respond the way they need to.
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