Were you caught off guard by this year’s cold and flu season? Feeling run down or like you are always fighting something? Want to make sure your Farmacy is stocked with all the right tools for supporting your system through illness? Tune in to hear Ali and Becki break down the function of the immune system, why your immune system can become imbalanced in the first place as well as foods and supplements to support best immune response.


In this Episode, Ali and Becki discuss the main drivers of a compromised immune system, which can lead to susceptibility to cold, and flu as well as more serious diseases like cancer and autoimmune conditions if left unchecked. The immune system is our body’s surveillance system that works to protect us from foreign invaders like bacteria and viruses, parasites and even abnormal tissue growth like tumors. Lear about key players in the immune system, how we can best support the immune system as well as our favorite preventative measures to keep in stock for cold, flu, ear infections and more!


Also in this Episode:


Welcome to the Naturally Nourished podcast, that delivers cutting edge food as medicine solutions for optimum health. Ali Miller is a nutrition expert sought out by the media and America’s top medical institutes for her revolutionary functional medicine interventions. From disease treatment to prevention, every episode will empower you with ways to put yourself back in control of your health. Please note, the topics discussed are for educational purposes only. Now welcome integrative dietitians Ali Miller and her co-host Becki Yoo.


A: Welcome to episode 68 of the Naturally Nourished Podcast. Today we’re talking about natural solutions to support your immune system. You are hearing us at the end of January or early February here and although it doesn’t get super cold in Texas, this is the time of year that cold and flu is peaking, so today we’re going to get into all things immune health, the foundations of how the immune system works, and natural tips and tricks to keep your immune system on par. So hey Becki how are you doing?


B: Hey Ali I’m good how are you?


A: Good, good and welcome to those of you who YouTube followers if you guys are tuning in, this is our first time doing this as a video and audio podcast so hopefully we’ll be fun, we’ll be more animated, make some action for those of you watching at home. And Becki and I got out of our pajamas just for you so-


B: At least from like, here, down.


A: I may be wearing slippers, it’s true.


B: Yeah, no I am too. True confession.


A Yes.


B: Ok so let’s jump right in then, Ali, and let’s talk to listeners about how – what the immune system actually is and how it functions in our body.


A: Sure. So the immune system I like to think of as the surveillance system, essentially, of the body. So it’s our natural defense mechanisms that are supposed to protect the body and organs and healthy tissues from foreign invaders. So these could be things like pathogenic bacteria, these could be viruses, these could be parasites, and, or even abnormal malformed tissue like we see with the onset of cancer. So it’s the immune system’s job to identify and detect something abnormal and then call in to guard all the natural defense mechanisms.


B: Ok, and then let’s talk about what the key players are of the immune system are. So we’ve heard of, like, white blood cells but let’s elaborate on that.


A: Sure so without getting too too nerdy there are innate responses and chemical responses to the immune system. So our innate systems include our barriers, so our barriers could actually be, like, your skin as a barrier so that protects us from exposure. We also have barriers along our mucosal lining, this is what lines our interior line of our gut when we’re talking about leaky gut, that barrier lining gets damaged. We also have barriers within our respiratory tract, in our ears and throat area and so the first kind of innate area of defense is structural and that is a barrier blocking exposure basically. There is also innate elements of chemical regulation which is like our hydrochloric acid or natural juices in our stomach, which are supposed to stay so acidic that they reduced the ability of bad bacteria to get in an overgrown state, so there’s an acidity regulation on a chemical level also there’s a different acidity in our saliva which is our first place to kind of protect against food borne illness and such. We have biological influences within this innate immune regulation which is our bacteria on a favorable like our chromancil or probiotic flora and those can be natural defenders against foreign invaders. They can also help to break down foods to be less foreign or less abrasive so they help to break down digestive elements and then we also can look at inflammatory processes as elements of our immune system. So this is where we pull in our chemical work there.


Our cytokines, prostaglandins interleukins, and these are all the kind of chemical warfare of the immune cells when we need to accelerate tissue repair or we need to identify a foreign defender we need to eradicate or remove it. So it can get and influence a chemical warfare if the body doesn’t like exposure to a certain pollen, and that can drive more inflammatory response in the ear, nose, and throat area and then the white blood cells as of part of their mechanism is to produce mucus, phlegm, that kind of gathers the antigen or the foreign compound and help to remove it by sneezing, by blowing your nose, by coughing up that fun gunk, and all of that sneezing done by our innate system paired with the chemical inflammatory system.


B: Got it and even beyond an allergen, you know ,thinking of environment foods as well would trigger that inflammatory response.


A: For sure and then that’s the part of the adaptive, so there’s the innate and then the adaptive works with the antigen expression and so that’s where our immune system, our T cells and B cells so whether we’re working from the thymus or the bone marrow, they play a role in releasing these inflammatory cytokines and they play a role in identifying what is friend and foe. So that’s where maybe liking in a certain environment for a certain time, your immune system may adapt and be less adapted or based on your stress response you may have increased adaptive immunity and all of that can play a huge role on your immune state as well.


B: Ok. Awesome. And then, so what happens when the immune system isn’t functioning and we’re not getting all of these functions that we just talked about


A: Yeah so we can go and over-reactivity and under-reactivity. So stress is definitely the Achilles heel that hits the immune system and when the immune system is on overdrive, we go into autoimmune disease states and we can also see within that chronic inflammatory processes because we’re overreacting at a pin drop and all of those interleukins and cytokines and inflammatory compounds are being bucketed out of the body. So in a hyper-reactive mode we can see chronic inflammation and autoimmune disease and within autoimmune disease it can be multiple sclerosis, lupus, hashimoto’s type of thyroiditis so we can see a whole multitude of disease states, there Crohn’s colitis, and all of that would be in the autoimmune and then the other end of the immune system influence with imbalanced activity can be hypo-reactivity or basically the surveillance system has shut down and so that is where we would see an onset or higher risk of things like cancer, also we’d be more susceptible to cold, flu viruses, and when someone is dealing with an autoimmune disease and they’re using a biologic or immunosuppressant drug, that’s why the side effects are so strong in cancer and in immune susceptibility because they’re basically shutting down that surveillance system and we’re not necessarily looking at those malformed cells or those foreign invaders which otherwise the immune system would be reacting to.


B: Ok, that makes  a lot of sense. So today with our focus on boosting the immune system, I want to talk about what it means to actually have that – go a little deeper into having that compromised immune function, or higher susceptibility to things like cold and flu. So let’s talk about what can drive or compromise the immune system in the first lace and then how we can greater support or boost it.


A: Ok. So the first thing we did look at is our HPA axis, which is our hypothalamus pituitary adrenal and that is our bodies stress mechanism. And I mean what episode are we in we’re in episode 68 and I swear to you guys that are listening that we have talked about the HPA axis on 60 of the 68 episodes. I don’t know something like that. I  mean stress is for some many people the Achilles heel. And remember with stress we get cortisol surges so what’s interesting is after high cortisol we get a cortisol drop or plateau and this is like that fly on the wall. So often when I’m talking to clients and I’m assessing their HPA axis, one of my questions will be “Do you often get run down?” ”Do you get cold or flus every season?” and for people who have adrenal fatigue, often their answer is “Yes” and often they’re like “Yes I travel so much for work, I’m constantly dealing with bronchitis upper respiratory infection.” And what’s interesting is one of the go to drugs for dealing with that is fluconazole or a nasal a steroid inhaler because they’re trying to compensate for that low baseline cortisol because cortisol has natural anti-inflammatory it has an influence with the immunological system.


So when stress is off and we especially in a state of adrenal fatigue we are highly susceptible to flu, virus, cold, and just immune distress. So that’s the first place and you know if you’re looking as a listener if you like “ah that’s me” you may consider looking into our Stress Support Bundle  which has the Adrenal Support, the Adaptogen Boost, and the Calm and Clear to help to regulate your body’s stress reactivity so you don’t get into such a depleted state so that’s one kind of first line of defense. And digging deeper maybe looking into maybe a cortisol assessment or something. Another thing we’d want to look at is sleep. A lot of research supports that individuals that get less than 8 hours of sleep a night are susceptible to virus, cold, and flu so we get a lot of immunological rebound we get a lot of process of autophaging where the immune system can actually eat away at the dysfunctional part of the cells and recycle the working parts so a lot of that cleanup happens in the sleeping time and also it happens during a fasting time so you may consider intermittent fasting actually during a time of illness and this is what we see with animals and people. Like Stella right now is cutting her IT so she’s not eating as much it’s an intuitive survival mechanism her body’s healing with a lot of inflammation and it kind of takes a break from the nourishing at that time.


B: That’s so interesting. It’s like “Yeah listen to your body” and eat bone broth or just tea and fluids for, you know, up to 16-24 hours even when we’re dealing with something.


A: Yeah it’s counterintuitive because people thing “Oh what should I be eating to improve my system?” and really it’s on the forefront, the prevention is upregulating your system. Yes we will talk about food as medicine tools for the immune system today but considering intermittent fasting can really help the body to not be stressed from the fed state and allow itself to do the cleanup of the mess per say so that can be a big tool for sure. Micro nutritional deficiencies, we’ll talk about some trends in particular. So some minerals such a zinc, B vitamins, and antioxidants that definitely play a high trend with the more susceptible, and then your exposure is really the final thing so being exposed on either end of the spectrum, either be exposed to someone that has a virus or pathogen so travelling, we always do this with kids in day care for instance, they’re in that petri dish of teachers get sick a lot. And then on the other end of the spectrum, being over sterilized, being exposed to antibiotics, being exposed to things that sterilize the microbiome can also suppress your immune function.


B: Oh my gosh my first year as a preschool teacher I have never been sicker in my life. Ear infections, strep throat, pink eye, I’m like “what is this, are adults even supposed to get this?” They’re not definitely not. Ok so one of the first lines of defense for colds, flu, ear infection, often we see antibiotics whether they’re prescribed with cause or not, and I know this is one you’ve been really avoiding as much as possible is Stella so let’s talk about the influence of antibiotics


A: Yeah so ear, nose, and throat and ear infections in general are the #1 cause of prescribed antibiotics in youth especially in the first 2 years of age and the concern of that is that there is strong trend of dermatological issues, there’s an increase of eczema at 6x increased rate with use of antibiotics before age 2 and that’ seven with a single dosage And these are statistics pulled from the CDC, Center for Disease Control, so there’s an upregulation of asthma 4x, and then allergies by 3x so antibiotics we really want to try to avoid as much as possible. And, usually an ear infection is first started with a viral infection of the respiratory tract and then the eustachian tubes, I’m not sure if that’s pronounced correctly, but the eustachian tubes get really swollen and fluid gets trapped in the middle of the ear that cannot drain. And so ear infections can have varied degrees of severity, remembering that they start as a viral influence which antibiotics would not help with but often fluid in the ear can become bacterial which the antibiotic would be warranted as needed, but you know really the first line of defense is trying to avoid that in the first place.


B: Sure and so how would we prevent ear infections, what are some guidelines for avoiding?


A: So one of the first ones that I’m pretty staunch about is avoiding in all dairy and all grains until the child has fully cut their molars and that’s because there’s different pressure in the ear, nose, and throat canal when we’re working through the teething process. And so cutting the molars is usually about 18 months somewhere between 14 – 20 months really, but so as they’re cutting those molars, that shifts pressure which can play a role with those ear canals and the issue with dairy is that it is mucus forming and so that is going to cause a little more phlegm and buildup and there is trends with how cow’s milk allergy and recurrent otitis media, which is recurring ear infections. We’ve seen that in clinical research as well so just be preemptive in keeping out cow’s milk is a big benefit and then grains because the epithelial lining the lining of the gut junctions is said to not be completely mature until also about 18-24 months. So trying to keep out grains means that we’re going to focus on getting more intact tight junctions of the gut without any of those influences on the zonulin protein like the gluten that we’d find having an influence causing a little less of a junction closure which can cause more immune reactivity more inflammation and then that would suppress the immune system being able to work on an antiviral influence. So it’s sometimes  we’re talking about the immune system we’re allowing focusing on the external focus on the mediator and trying to limit those exposure as we can on the forefront. So keeping dairy and keeping grains out can be very beneficial for both the ear, nose, and throat influence an well and gut integrity and reducing inflammatory response in the body.


B: Trying not to distract the immune system.


A: Exactly, that’s kind of the gut focus. And dairy, if you’re allowing your kid to have diary already, pulling out on the onset of any gunk is going to be really helpful- adults too actually for sure. I mean, I definitely recommend, although yogurt can be a good probiotic-rich food, I definitely recommend pulling out dairy. And just to clarify on kiddos and babies especially, breast milk is highly recommended so breast milk is not diary. I mean, it’s lactation and whatnot. Human drive, so in breast milk actually when babies directly breastfeeding it can aid in the prevention in it really helps with the prevention of ear infection based on the deep sucking that happens it really helps to clear in that area which is why when we’re flying if you’re breastfeeding that’s the best time to pop Babe on when you’re flying up and down pressure in the head because that swallowing ,you know adults may try to kind of yawn.


B: Chewing gum is that recommendation.


A: Yeah same mechanism so when Babe is breastfeeding they’re actually sucking and they’re helping to alleviate some of that pressure which help to move some of that block up and build up. And also breast milk has active immunoglobulins which is why it really is nature’s perfect food. It has active immunoglobulins which helps to support the immune system activity and it also has HMOS, human milk oligosaccharides, which are natural barrier defenders and help to feed good bacteria activity so breastfeeding would be a very positive thing and then probiotics within that for Babe all the way up to age 2 are really like the Ultraflor Baby and I’ll be putting that in the show notes. I use that regardless of illness so not just preventative but ongoing to support healthy immune function and then I go to Metagenetics chewable Ultrafloric Children and then for adults, I recommend our Naturally Nourished Baseline Restore Baseline Probiotic which  is a 15 billion colony forming unit probiotic that has a 50/50 blend of lacto and bifidus so that’s a good baseline and then if you get hit with an immune bug I would definitely repping up to the Targeted Strength which is 60 billion units, the same distribution so if you’re waiting to order you could also take 4 capsules of the Baseline and you’d be getting the same thing it’s just a better price point to get the Targeted Strength if you know you need more probiotic support on a regular basis.


B: Ok and ‘ll make sure that I link to all of these products in the show notes. So beyond removing dairy and grains, and, you know, avoidance of those and the use of a good probiotic, what about managing fluid intake and managing kind of a fluid buildup in general.


A: Yeah so the big thing that we look at is maintaining lymphatic flow when we’re looking at your ears nose and throats concerns so this as I’m speaking of still ear infections because the high prescribed antibiotics and that’s something I really want Mamas to listen to but adults too if we’re talking about, you know, when we get inflammation in the ear nose and throat area, even during like cedar pollen that’s really bad right now we can get swollen lymph nodes in the throat area and so that’s all a sign of that distress. So warm compress can be very helpful, shower or steam can be very helpful, massage to help lymphatic tissue so like massaging temples, rubbing in the back of the neck, rubbing in that throat area, really helps to circulate the lymphatic tissue and then insuring electrolyte balance and optimal hydration status so drinking water, bone broth is  a fabulous tool during this times because it’s going to have potassium, sodium, you’re also going to be getting in a lot of an acetyl cysteine which is what actually work as an expectorant to break up mucus and phlegm and drives increase natural killer cell productivity which is your immune system’s defense mechanism. So bone broth would be a fabulous thing that you could work into your child’s diet. As an adult you can sip on 6-8 oz. We work it now into Stella’s sippy cups and she does well with it. When she is off of it or sometimes she goes on defiant food things, we will at those times try to incorporate it into the casserole. It works really well.


B: Sure and then I guess a steam shower with essential oils, any specific oils that you would recommend?


A: Yeah so eucalyptus really helps with bronchial dilation and that’s what we think of back in the day Vick’s vapor rub so that can definitely help and then Thieve’s is another one and as long as really quality inhalants we really like to be very mindful of the big picture influence of children, so I don’t really like kids to use them as the inhaling. But to dab them in a hot bath, on a shower wall would work really well whereas a passive diffuser in the room would be fine too.


B: Ok awesome and then I know you have a couple more tools for both ear infection and flu prevention so let’s talk about those.


A: Yeah so the Mullen Garlic Drops by Herbfarm are phenomenal, yes, you will smell a little bit like pizza. We’re laughing so hard because it doesn’t have oregano in it but it must just be the olive oil with the garlic that just nostalgia just pulls that out. But just 1 -2 drops per ear so it has antiviral and antibacterial properties at both the olive oil and the Mullen and the garlic and so it can help with swelling and inflammation and pain but I can also help with moving the stagnant fluid which can help to prevent infection, which can actually fight off bacteria. So we actually do this preemptively every time Stella flies like 3 days prior and then like when we arrive at our destination. Also there’s just that pressure in the sinus area and then any time we see her pulling  on her ear or any early onset it’s a great tool and we’ve made it, knock on wood, 19 months without a full on ear infection. She’s had a couple moderate or mild we’ve had looked at and we’ve brought her back in for and advanced check-up and doing the Mullen and garlic oil drops 2x a day has really helped 5 days in a row ,to take it out. So we’ve been in good shape there. The other thing for comprehensive immune support, and the mullen garlic drops are great for adults too so even if it’s not maybe an ear infection that you’re prone toward but it’s in ear, nose, and throat remember that that’s one of the best deliveries to get into that area. So dropping those into your ears again 2x a day 5 days in a row on a higher onset or once a day for a preventative measure would work really nicely. And then the other thing that I love is the elderberry syrup by Gaella and it’s interesting I was talking to a client about another brand, I won’t brand bash, another brand do lozenges and they’re elderberry as well and we looked at the dosage and it was 12.5 mg, well 1 tsp of the elderberry syrup by Gaella is 1.9 g or 1900 mg.


B: That’s a big difference.


A: Like 12 times 1900 is like so there is clinical research showing actually the use of concentrated elderberry during a time of onset from incubation of exposure  to different viruses and even flu strain and it is very supportive of your natural immune system and can help with eradication when taken at an affective dosage. So we’ll put a link in the show notes to one that’s in our Amazon store and it’s pretty widely available so there’s dosage instruction actually on the bottle starting with a year so under 2 years all the way through adults.


B: Ok so you’ve used this with Stella and you and Brady use it as well?


A: Yeah we use it also kind of pre-flying it’s been shown now it’s kind of the big where echinacea used to be a big hit. I think it’s right now the most clinically sound natural compound to help with cold and flu.


B: Awesome, I need to pick up a bottle.


A: And it tastes delicious. I did, I was putting it in Stella’s water bottle and we got in a little issue because she noticed it and then she kept acting like I was poisoning her and would be like “nah” to all of other water so now I just say “we’re going to take your elderberry” and we do it in a syringe and a half teaspoon and she’s fine with that.


B: Ok.

A: Sometimes it’s better to not trick your kids.


B: Like “I know what you’re doing.”

A: Yeah.


B: Let’s talk a little bit more now that we’re on this topic of food as medicine for immune system so what other foods can we bring in?


B: So one of the big ones, like I mentioned, probiotics are key so those of us that aren’t breastfeeding as the baby which is probably all of us listening, unless those that are passive and can’t control it we aren’t going to have access to breastmilk so the next best line so like I said yogurt and kefir can be probiotics during the year when you don’t have mucus and if you tolerate cow’s milk or dairy you can use, you know kefir or goat milk kefir if you like things like that, you’d do better with different diary proteins, but if you have active cold and phlegm and upper respiratory gunk I recommend staying diary free and using the probiotic cultured foods so we’re talking about cultured vegetables, pickled vegetable, we’re talking about also this could be like pickled carrots it could be sauerkraut it could  be beet kvass, it could be Hat Creek has a bunch different fun pickled stuff like ochre, Farmhouse Cultures has some curried pickled cauliflower so there’s a bunch of brands on the market and then there’s even that Gut Shot by Farmhouse Cultures which you can do like an ounce of, it’s glorified pickle juice really, and these work really nice to help to inoculate the gut and to give the body those natural defenders in the immune system and also upregulate the removal of bad bacteria and even viruses.


A: Awesome so that baseline probiotic kind of is a first line of defense and then if we are actively fighting something, you said to bump that one up.


B: Yeah so as far as foods, you know, foods are great and then on top of that I would definitely take a probiotic a day I think a probiotic a day keeps the doctor away in so many different disease states and the Restore Baseline probiotic is that 15 billion but if you know that this is a time of the year that you’re susceptible or especially if you had to go on antibiotic, I definitely recommend after being on an antibiotic being on a Targeted Strength spectrum because the Targeted Strain is, again, the 4x density of the baseline and then the spectrum has over 10 difference strains so you’re getting more of a – as it sounds – a wide spectrum of support from that sterility factor of the antibiotics, so you would actually keep the baseline probiotic at bed while you take the antibiotic and then following the antibiotic you’d follow with the targeted strength and spectrum 1 and 1 at bed until those bottles are gone and then you could go back to the baseline.


B: Awesome I think that’s super helpful. And then what about – let’s go back and circle back on garlic as a food instead of just something you put in your ear.


A: Yeah so garlic is- has been really discussed since the flag days beyond keeping away vampires they really they have a compound it has a compound called allicin and the allicin is going to be more bioavailable if it is exposed to oxygen so when you’re chopping your garlic you want to kind of start your recipe with that, allow it to hit oxygen for like 10-15 minutes and that helps  to activate the natural compounds that support your immune system and there’s these sulfur containing compounds that are going be, again, antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal and also can influence parasitic activity in the body. So garlic is great and you know most recipes start with sautéing garlic and onions so you can always double that you can roast a whole bulb of garlic I like to do that through this time of this year where you cut off the top. You can keep the papery skin intact, cut off the top, put a little stab of Kerrigold butter and then wrap that in parchment paper and put that on a cookie sheet, pop that in the oven, and roast that and then kind of squeeze out the garlic and that’s a lot easier to puree into your bone broth or really any recipe mash into roast vegetables. It’s super tasty you can also just mix it in with some ghee and keep it stored and use it as a topping on things. Eat it by the spoon.


B: Keeps the vampires away too.


A: Totally totally. So roasted garlic is an awesome way to do that any then just adding cloves of garlic wherever you can is a great way to get that food as medicine support.


B: Awesome. We do the roasted garlic in our cauliflower mash it just gives it – so good.


A: Yeah.


B: An entire bulb of garlic in there.


A: Yeah and we’ll put that simple recipe in the show notes as well and then over on the blood we’ll link to a blog that I put out with support to your immune system which ash a couple of these tips as well.


B: Awesome and then let’s go back to bone broth and talk about that a little bit more.


A: Sure so I think I talked about how it’s an expectorant so breaks up mucus and phlegm and that’s because it does have an acetyl cysteine which is a precursor to glutathione, the granddaddy antioxidant. Bone broth also has glutamine and glycine. So glutamine is the amino acid that is a fuel source and building block to help to seal our guts so that’s where it’s so popular with autoimmune diet protocol and helping with preventing food sensitivity and food reactions, so getting that glutamine in the bone broth paired with gelatin and collagen kind of further accelerates that it’s kind of a face lift for the gut. So then gelatin and collagen support hair, skin, nails, connective tissues, joint pain, so really it’s a big therapeutic, but  really the fact that the saltiness paired with the liquid expectant for cold, flu and viral and then has the ability upregulate our white blood cell response and our natural killers is going to be a really big way to really support the immune system


B: Awesome and then we can add extra, like you said, onions, garlic to support as well.


A: Yeah totally and you can, right, during the process of making the bone broth for sure because you’re adding scraps so you can get more of that allicin in, but then you can puree in that aftermath of strained bone broth and add in more of those compounds.


B: Sure. And then what about organic herbal teas and things like that?


A: Yeah so tea some of the antioxidants and polyphenol seen in the actual tea leaves so the EGCGs which we have talked about to boost metabolism and help with fat burn, they also have anticancer or cancer fighting compounds. We’ve seen they can actually inhibit viral influence of replications so if we’re talking about someone who has HPV and is looking at prevention of cervical cancer, any viral, it can be herpes and whatnot, green tea is one of the best things that you can consume 2-3 cups a day of to help just with support your viral influence in the body and then that would also tie in this influence with cold and flu season of course also having that antioxidant support and antiviral support. There is an influence also that with the warm beverage that that helps as an expectorant to thin out and break up mucus and get things flowing. And if you’re looking at in the evening, the green tea is going to have the highest amount of L-threonine which is also why matcha kind of got so popular. Matcha is that powder green tea but L-threonine helps with our REM cycles of sleep, it also helps the alpha wavelength of the brain which is concentration, focus, creative thought place, stress, relaxation, so modulating the stress response like we talked about in the beginning stress can drive imbalance of the immune system so that helps a lot as well, but in the evening time if you don’t want caffeinated form, you may consider an herbal tea and you could do an antioxidant rich ribose or a citrus tea and then I’m trying to think of are there any other big ones , I mean chamomile can help with sleep.


B: For sure, there’s a lot of ginger and turmeric blends and things like that.


A: And then there’s like astralagus you can find astralagus root, ginseng, ginseng would be like an excitatory that wouldn’t be good but astralagus would be fine in the evening. That would be also supported rose hips are really good vitamin C. A lot of those ends would also support the immune system for varied reasons.


B: Awesome and then I’ll link matcha recipe in the show notes just in case some of our listeners haven’t tried matcha yet.


A: Ok.


B: What about Mastertonic?


A: I know that’s like waiting.


B: That’s my favorite.


A: Yeah how about you talk about the Mastertonic Becki because you have the goggles to prove.


B: So, disclaimer, if you make this recipe I highly recommend wearing onion chopping goggles or protective eye gear or sunglasses for something because it is so full of those sulfur containing compounds so it’s garlic, onion, horseradish, ginger, I think we add oregano.


A: Spiciest pepper you can find.


B: The spiciest peppers you can find like a full cup of those and either chopped by hand, which will take you a really long time, or you can do it in your food processor, but that like noxious gas that you get when you open the food processor could I think it could kill a horse.


A: So you blend all of that up into a puree and then you soak it with the Braggs apple cider vinegar which has the mother so the Braggs apple cider vinegars going to have the probiotic in there already, so we get those positive saccharomyces strains and you allow it to ferment for about 7 – 10 days, upwards of 14 days, and then you strain it all off and at that time that liquid you can keep in the fridge and take like an ounce a day it’s going to be very bitey, very volatile but it has a lot of antifungal, antiviral, antiparasitic, antibacterial fighters and definitely works as an expectorant it gets the fluids flowing for sure.


B: Oh yeah I’ve given this one as a gift I have friends here that are getting sick or if I get sick it lasts for like a day. Give them a jar of this please proceed with caution. Not a joke, but it’s good stuff.


A: Yeah we do it in a immune supporting cooking class that Becki and I taught-


B: Oh yeah.


A: And it was always just fun to cheers to your health and like watch the aftermath. And what else I was going to say, when you strain off the liquid, you can use- I’ve been known to freeze some of that, I can’t think of the there’s a term from herbal medicine making, that I can’t think of but whatever’s left- mastration – there’s a term. It’s not coming but anyway the stuff you strain off you don’t have to discard of that a vegetable and herbal matter you can actually use that in stir-fries, you can freeze it in chunks so it can be a fun thing to use culinarily as well.


B: Yeah we froze our last time you’re reminding me that I still have it in there to use. An Indian dish I’m thinking-


A: Totally


B: Or make it kind of a different twist on a pot roast.


A: Puree in your bone broth with some ghee.

B: Sure.


A: Yeah.


B: And then let’s just talk about like full coverage basic support in terms of-


A: Supplements or-


B: Yeah supplements.


A: So the first place I would start with is making sure you’re taking a good quality multivitamin so I’m big proponent of our Multi Defense because it has bioavailable methylated Bs so it has your methyl folate, your methyl cobalamin, it has also bioavailable chelated minerals, and then it has phytocompounds so you’re going to get your plant based antioxidants synergy. In all of a good balance of vitamins, minerals, and it is very easy to absorb so without iron would be for most people, for women that are actively menstruating it would be with iron, even with a non-menstruating days just to help with those reserves of loss f blood and so the Multidefense I recommend as a baseline formula to support you immune system and give you that insurance policy for micronutritional deficiencies. Then if you’re having issues with sleep, I mentioned, you know, first that that Stress Support as a tool  that could work nicely which is the adrenal support the Adaptogen Boost, and the Calm and Clear so that’s one way to adjust your stress access, that HPA axis, but if you feel that you’re not under stress and you’re just having sleep issues, you may consider our Sleep Support https://www.alimillerrd.com/shop/shipped-items-email/nutritional-supplements/supplements/sleep-support/ which has a blend of nerv beans which are herbs that help us to relax so it has lemon balm, it has skull cap, it has phillarian and then it has 3 mg of melatonin in there as well which also help with that adaptive sleep. So Sleep Support may be a tool also to consider to keep you out of the woods as far as immune support those are both preemptive things. Stress Support Pack, the Multi vitamin and the Sleep Support all as tools to consider.


B: Awesome and then let’s go over a few more remedies for things like a cough, stuffy nose, so if we’re not successful with prevention, we do get sick, what can we do about it? Let’s start with a cough.


A: Ok so for a cough, my favorite thing is a zippy toddy so classically a toddy is an alcoholic beverage but you do not have to add alcohol to this and it really depends on if your throat hurts and it’s short term you might consider actually adding alcohol to it because it does have that analgesic kind of numbing influence so that could be a choose your own adventure. But it’s the juice of 1-2 full lemons and then we’re incorporating in there ginger ,and that’s going to also act as an expectorant to thin down mucus and that kind of kick and bite of ginger can also help to support the immune system. And then we add in coconut oil to that and blend that up and the coconut oil has monolaurin, lauric acid, a lot of also antibacterial and antifungal and antiviral drivers and this is a warm beverage so you kind of froth it up kind like a keto coffee or keto tea, it’s just ginger, lemon, coconut oil, and water and then, again, you could determine in the evening if you’re also looking to help with sleep, you might throw in an ounce of bourbon or rye whiskey and that can help also like I said it has a little bit of a numbing influence and maybe relaxation.


You can gargle for a cough, or mucus also, sea salt, and you could add with that a little bit of apple cider vinegar to try to get that probiotic into the eye, nose, and throat activity area. Also for a cough, I’d consider those garlic mullen drops even though it seems nonrelated it’s definitely in that upper area of the immune system. Essential oils, so eucalyptus we mentioned, even lavender, thyme, thieve’s, dapping them in your shower when the bronchials are dilated with that steam and really deeply inhaling is going to be key to get breakdown of mucus and the breakdown of the phlegm buildup and then another thing you can try and I’ll put a link to, is called a Ginger Tussen it’s by Designs for Health. I like to keep that on hand in my household as a good natural remedy and it’s just a really concentrated syrup with ginger, so they’re taking on a Robitussin cough thing,  and ginger has some antispasmodics as well to help to reduce just like it’s an antiemetic antinausea, it has antispasmotic if you’re having a lot of that coughing going on it can help to soothe and cool that out.


B;  Awesome and then what about a stuffy nose?


A: So stuffy nose I’d also lead with the garlic mullen drops but then the next thing I think too is a medi pot . So nedi pot you can use just saline or a sea salt solution, you can also mix a little bit of colloidal silver in that. Usually like 10 ppm is what we’re looking at as far as using as the nedi pot basically you work with gravity and it’s supposed to go through one nostril, out the other. And that helps to clear any buildup and so collodial silver would support on an antiviral, and antibacterial level also within the movement of the warm water.  And the seal salt just kind of acts as a saline , and then another thing you could try within that is half of a probiotic capsules to taking the Restore Baseline Probiotic and putting half to that in a nedi pot- I wouldn’t just that with the silver because they’re kind of working against each other, but either or would be fine to consider. We’ve actually do that with a candida cleanse if people get a lot of wax in their ears or a lot of that movement where we’re battling bacteria and fungus we can often get a translocation or a relocation of that bacteria to other areas in the biome so that that can be a preemptive support as well.


Another thing as far as stuffy nose would be essential oils so same recommendations you could add peppermint rosemary and you’d be doing them more as a warm towel as a direct inhalant to kind of break up in the nasal pathways. All those would work really well and even the sea salt nose spray would be considered too. And then bone broth for all of these things of course I would say bar none and the probiotics like foundational, right?


B; Awesome and then what about additional support for cold and flu or just general immune support?


A: So I’d be bringing g in that shot a day of that Mastertonic for sure,. I would look at upping your vitamin C intake, upwards to 3 grams a day or up to bowel tolerance so I like to look at a buffered version of vitamins C which  is going to be less bowel stimulating and more bioavailable. We can put a link to one of those in the show notes and so 3-5 g a day would be within reason I like there’s a Buffered C Powder by Thorne which has I think it’s 2.35 , that’s just my freaky memory, I think its 2.35 grams per scoop. So you could do 2-3 scoops of that per day would be really appropriate. Adding, like we said, garlic and onions to everything, would be helpful I also like a favorable mushroom formula by Metagenics called Immucore and Immucore has a little bit of selenium, vitamin C but it also has a blend of like the reishe mushrooms, the ganoderma, cordyseps and it a good synergy of immunological defenders from the mycelium family and so that’s another thing you could bring in as an addition to the probiotics and the bone broth.


B: Awesome. So this is all so so helpful. I know I’ve got a few more items I need to stock in my own pantry. Our immune systems need a  little support this season. So thank you Ali for shedding some light on the immune system.


A: Yeah yeah I hope that there’s someth – and you know you can really have some fun  which you do it. Like we said, try to make the Mastertonic now while you’re listening cause cold and flu season lasts through March you guys so get on it, have some fun with it, and you know, think of ways you can actively add, hopefully every episode you guys listen to there’s a little bit of clinical pearl that you can add to your artillery and tool belt to use food as medicine to support your body, your immune system and your entire household. So thanks for listening and If you guys have a moment, if you’re joining us on YouTube for the first time leave us a comment also feel free we’d love you to share this video on your Facebook page, on your Pinterest, as an email, to any friends and family that would find benefit and those of you listening on the podcast please head over to iTunes and leave us a 5 star review with a couple of comments which helps our algorithm and helps other people find us as a resource to support them. So thanks for tuning in guys!


B: Bye.


Thank you for listening to the naturally nourished podcast. Visit our blog at AliMillerRD.Com for recipes, wellness tips, and food as medicine meal plans. Connect with Ali and Becki at alimillerrd on Instagram, twitter, and Facebook. Until next time, stay nourished and be well.


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  1. Super great info ladies! I shared on FB and sent to my kids (1 travels internationally and 1 works in the schools).
    Please include how to deal with dry skin and seasonal allergies (we know they are coming) in a future cast. Thanks,

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