Immunity Boosting Herbs and Foods

Boost your immune system with botanicals known to support our body’s ability to fight infection.

When our immune system is running below its optimal level we are more susceptible to infections such as colds, flu and tummy bugs – as well as more serious conditions. So for good health we need to be pro-active in looking after our immune system in order to be ‘fighting fit’.

Indigo Herbs has a range of cost-effective botanicals to help us achieve this. Scientific studies have shown that certain herbs and foods can support and enhance immune function, some by providing the nutrition needed to build the immune system and some by actually increasing the number of white blood cells which destroy bacteria, viruses and other pathogens (micro-organisms that can cause disease).

As always, prevention is better than cure, and this is where healthy lifestyle choices come in. A balanced wholefood diet, supplemented with nutrient-dense superfoods such as seeds, berries, algae, grasses and seaweeds, will provide a solid foundation for feeding and maintaining the immune system. Add our high-quality, cost-effective herbs and essential oils to the equation, and you have a veritable army of helpful allies.

One of the most interesting recent branches in medical science is psycho-neuro-immunology, which basically means that what we think and feel can affect our immunity. So by taking charge of your health you are already creating positivity in your body! Browse the list of natural health ingredients below and see what catches your eye.

 

Acai Berries

(Euterpe oleracea)
Acai Berries

This Organic Acai berry powder is freeze dried by not using a heat or chemical treatment, bringing the product to you with maximum nutritional content intact.

Acai is a beautiful rich royal purple coloured berry from the Brazilian Rain Forest in South America.

 

Ashwagandha

(Withania somnifera)
Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha is the tonic for the 21st century lifestyle, it is said to bring "the strength of a stallion". It is known as Indian Ginseng. It is used extensively in Ayurvedic medicine.

Ashwagandha is rejuvenating and strengthening to the nervous system, and it works as a mild depressant to the over agitated nerves whilst nourishing and protecting. So it is excellent for stress induced disorders such as Insomnia, Anxiety, Neurosis. And an excellent immune boosting system herb or immune herbs

Ashwagandha is an adaptogen, so it helps the body and mind adapt to stress that cannot be avoided, whilst strengthening and calming the mind and body.

 

Astragalus

(Astragalus membranaceus)
Astragalus

Astragalus has a long history in China as an immune booster. Used as a base herb in many different herbal blends, Astragalus has the power to either fight off or help the body climb back to peak health. Highly recommended with Clats Claw. 

 

Baobab

(Adansonia digitata)
Baobab

With its high Vitamin C content Baobab Powder is a perfect choice for keeping colds and other seasonal problems at bay. Natural Vitamin C is much better than synthetic Vitamin C and is more easily accessible for the body. A zingy taste perfect for adding to breakfast smoothie.

 

Barley Grass

(Hordeum vulgare L)
Barley Grass

The young leaves of the Barletgrass plant have a tremendous ability to absorb nutrients from the soil, and are harvested at 12 -14 inches high.

Barley grass is known to contain vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants, chlorophyll, live enzymes and amino acids. It is thought to include a balanced ratio of protein, fat, and carbohydrate necessary for a balanced diet. Barleygrass is easily assimilated throughout the digestive tract providing the body with optimum nutrition.

 

Bee Pollen

Bee Pollen

Bee pollen is one of nature's superfoods, rich in vitamins, minerals, enzymes, amino acids and anti-oxidants. It is thought to be an immune system builder and it enhances vitality.

Bee pollen is known to help counteract the action of toxins and bring relief to sufferers of allergies, including hay fever, as it reduces the histamine levels in the body. It is also known to alleviate nausea, sleep disorders, stress and anxiety by bringing the body into nutritional balance and well being.

It's thought to be a great brain booster, lifting brain fatigue, improving alertness and helping concentration levels when taken over an extended period of time. It is also known to bring increased levels of energy and vitality, helping with athletic endurance, stamina, recovery and speed.

 

Black Pepper

(Piper nigrum)
Black Pepper

In Western medicine Black pepper is known for its active constituent piperine. This phyto-chemical is known to calm the nervous system, reduce fevers, relieve pain, and also have an anti-inflammatory effect. It is also an anti-fungal and anti-oxidant. Black pepper is also known to be stimulating to the circulatory system.

It is very good for warming the body, it is a digestive and stimulating to the intestinal tract.

 

Camu Camu

(Mycaria dubia)
Camu Camu

Camu Camu from Peru is made from berries from the Peruvian Rainforest, wild crafted and then prepared into powder, this ensures the phyto-nutrient content is left intact. Camu Camu is a pink powder and thought to be one of the richest natural sources of Vit C on the planet, it is an anti-oxidant, with a high source of minerals and vitamins, such as: Iron, Niacin, Phosphorous, Potassium, Riboflavin, Beta-carotene, Amino acids.

 

Cats Claw

(Uncaria tomentosa)
Cat's Claw

This fantastic herb can be thought of as a great adaptogen that can help quite a few different problems. Traditionally it is used for joint pain, stomach and colon problems and as an immune booster.

Cats Claw has many varying phytochemicals which contribute to it's multifaceted uses. Science has yet to find one particular chemical that can claim all the benefits associated with Cats Claw.

Originally sourced from the depths of the Amazonian jungle, the Ashanika Indians have been using this vine for centuries as a cure all. The plant itself features in their creation folklore concerning how they came into the world.

 

Cayenne Pepper

(Capsicum frutescens)
Cayenne

Cayenne pepper is one of the oldest cultivated foods and appears to have been used for its culinary and medicinal properties for nearly 10,000 years.

Capsicum have a hot fiery flavour, stimulating the digestive system from the salivary glands to the colon. The active ingredients travel via the circulatory system to the far corners of the body. Taking capsicum even effects the brain, releasing endorphins, which can relieve pain and engender feelings of pleasure in the body. It is also known for its analgesic / pain killing properties.

 

Chaga Mushroom

(Inonotus obliquus)
 

Dandelion

(Taraxacum officinale)
Dandelion

Dandelion is known primarily for its action on the kidneys and liver, it is a herbal tonic for both. Dandelion is thought to flush out the renal system (kidneys and bladder), assisting with the release of water retention and toxicity. It also stimulates the flow of bile in the liver, which assists with the breaking down of fats and the removal of toxins. As a liver tonic, it also relieves the congestion of the liver and gall bladder.

 

Echinacea

(Echinacea Purpurea)
Echinacea purpurea

Echinacea is widely respected as "THE remedy for colds and flu." It is a major immune booster that helps the body combat all types of infection. Its anti-bacterial character means it is effective against bacteria and viral attacks. It is a botanical anti- biotic and immune system stimulant, and is recommended as a daily tonic, especially during winter.

 

Eucalyptus

(Eucalyptus Smithii)
Eucalyptus

Eucalyptus is a refreshing and uplifting botanical, and has many uses. It is traditionally used as a respiratory healer, and it has a penetrating, invigorating, clean aroma. Its menthol-like uplifting top note aroma helps the user breathe easy again.

 

Ginger

(Zingiber officinale (Roscoe))
Ginger

Ginger is known as a herbal remedy for digestive disorders. It is known to settle the digestive system and promote gastric secretion of bile, it stimulates the gastro-intestinal tract and aids digestion. It is also used in the case of fever, as it promotes perspiration, it also soothes a sore throat so can be a helpful remedy in colds and flu. Applied externally Ginger can treat sore overworked muscles, cramp and poor circulation. And Ginger is an excellent remedy for morning sickness and travel sickness.

 

Ginkgo Biloba

(Ginkgo biloba, Salisburia adiantifolia, Salisburia macrophylla)
Ginkgo Biloba

Ginkgo is one of the most popular herbs in use today, originating in Asia. It is the oldest surviving tree on earth and it has been used traditionally to improve concentration and memory. It is also known to stimulate circulation and thin the blood. It should not be taken along side blood thinning medicine.

 

Goji Berries

(Lycium barbarum)
Goji Berries

Goji berries / Wolf berries are known as the ultimate tonic for longevity, within the Chinese medicine tradition. They are thought to nourish Yin energy in the body, having a cooling and nourishing effect on the whole system. They are the perfect daily tonic for modern living, which is said to create too much heat, fire and Yang energy in the body. Goji berries have been used in traditional Mongolian, Tibetan and Chinese medicine for 1000s of years.

 

Golden Seal

(Hydrastis Canadensis)
Golden Seal

Golden Seal is anti-microbial, anti-biotic, anti-inflammatory and astringent. So it is known to help fight bacterial infections, and fungal disorders. It is known as a remedy for eczema, ringworm, pruritis, earache and conjunctivitis. It may be used as a mouthwash for gum disease and mouth ulcers, as a douche for vaginal problems, such as thrush, and as eardrops for middle-ear inflammation and congestion.

 

Gotu kola

(Hydrocotyle asiatica)
Gotu Kola

Gota kola has been referred to as "food for the brain" so it is used as a brain tonic, known to aid intelligence and memory. It is thought to combat stress, by rebuilding energy reserves and increasing mental and physical power.

It is known as a nerve tonic, a promoter of memory and a blood purifier. As a nervine it is recomended for nervous disorders, including senility, premature aging, and epilepsy. It strengthens the adrenal glands and energises the central nervous system.

 

Hibiscus Flower

(Hibiscus sabdariffa)

Having a good amount of vitamin C, Hibiscus Flowers can be used as a natural boost to the immune system while also lowering blood pressure. There are also certain chemicals in Hibiscus that have been proven to cleanse the intestine of foreign bacteria making the immune system more effective.

Hibiscus comes from Hawaii/Polynesia and has integrated into many cultures being firmly associated with feminine energy. In India it is the favourite flower to be offered to female deities.

 

Kelp Seaweed

(Laminara digitata)

Kelp Seaweed is an excellent source of iron, potassium and fluoride but relatively low in sodium. It contains all the trace minerals from sea elements which are needed by humans. Kelp Seaweed contains calcium and magnesium and is a natural source of iodine which is essential for thyroid health and hormone secretion. It contains vitamins C, E and A and is high in vitamins B6 and B12, dietary fibre and protein.

 

Lavender

(Lavandula officinalis)

Lavender flowers can be used in many ways, they can be sewed into a sachet to perfume a space, or used as a pot pourri. When made into a tea infusion use: 1 heaped teaspoon of dried Lavender flowers to 1 cup of boiling water. Steep for 15 - 20 minutes. Drink this tea 3 times per day for medicinal effects.

 

Lemon verbena

(Lippia citriodora)
Lemon verbena

Lemon verbena is a lovely aromatic plant that is indiginous to South America, it was brought over to Europe by the Spaniards. It has been used traditionally as a culinary herb, a tea, a perfume and for its medicinal properties.

 

Lion's Mane Mushroom

(Hericium erinaceus)
Lions Mane

Lion's Mane Mushroom contains polysaccharides which are known to boost the immune system and help in recovery from illness.

 

Maca

(Lepidium meyenii )
Maca

Maca is a popular integral part of the Peruvian way of life, it is a root vegetable that looks a bit like a turnip and it is put into soups, cakes, breads and drinks in Peru. It is grown high in the Andes at 14,000 ft in very rich soils, so its mineral content is especially high.

 

Maitake Mushroom

(Grifola frondosa)
Maitake Mushroom

Miatake Mushrooms are a great source of polysaccharides which is known as a great immune boosting phytochemical.

 

Milk Thistle

(Silybum marianum)

Milk Thistle herb has a traditional and modern use as a liver tonic.

It is believed to encourage the secretion and flow of bile and is therefore associated withthe liver, the kidneys and the gall bladder.

 

Mistletoe

(Viscum alba loranthaceae)

In Norse mythology it was the God of peace Balder, that inspired Mistletoe to become the kissing plant. When struck by an arrow, his life was restored so his parents gave Mistletoe to the Norse Goddess of love and she dedicated it to its widely used modern purpose.

 

Oyster Mushroom

(Pleurotus ostreatus)
Oyster Mushroom

The Oyster Mushroom contains polysaccharides which are phytochemicals that boost the immunity in order to keep the body healthy.

 

Rosehip

(Rosa canina)
Rosehip

The main immune boosting ingredient in Rosehips is their full content of Vitamin C which acts as a powerful antioxidant that is one of the main immune boosting vitamins that the body loves.

The human body cannot hold Vitamin C and so we need a constant supply of it in order to keep all our organs working well. Plant derived vitamin C is said to be more effective on the human body than synthetically made ascorbic acid. This is because the body finds it very difficult to assimilate and absorb synthetic vitamin C making it pass through our system very quickly.

Rosehips have been used in Europe as a food and medicine for centuries with the plant also being a potent symbol of silence and secrets.

 

Rosemary

(Rosmarinus officinalis)
Rosemary

Known to be good for stimulating circulation and strengthening fragile blood vessels, it is indicated to be of use when recovering from flu or pneumonia, particually in the elderly, is also a tonic for the nervous system.

 

Shiitake Mushroom

(Lentinula edodes)
Shiitake Mushroom

Shiitake Mushrooms contain polysaccharides which boost the immune system to better defend against illness.

 

Siberian Ginseng

(Eleutherococcus snticosus)
Siberian Ginseng

Siberian ginseng is not actually ginseng but it is so called because it works in such a similar way. Siberian Ginseng / Eleutherococcus is an adaptogen, and it encourages the adrenal glands to secrete STRESS FIGHTING HORMONES.

 

Spirulina

(Arthrospira platensis, and Arthrospira maxima)
Spirulina

Spirulina is a blue-green algae and it contains a wide range of valuable nutrients. Firstly it contains 65% easily digested PROTEIN, and 18 amino acids. It is a unique vegetarian complete source of protein and much of its protein has been pre-digested by the algae itself and these enzymes go on to assist in the human digestive and absorption process. This protein source is superior because it also has lower fat, lower cholesterol and no artificial growth booster chemicals like meat and dairy protein.

Spirulina is the secret to success for vegetarian body-building.

 

Tea Tree

(Melaleuca alternifolia)

Tea Tree essential oil is a powerful, anti-septic and medicinal botanical that has many uses. It is traditionally used in first aid and it is an indispensible master healer. It has a woody, fresh and pungent top note aroma.

 

Tulsi (Holy Basil)

(Ocimum tenuiflorum)
Tulsi

Tulsi, also known as Holy Basil, has a long history in India for being taken as a tonic for boosting the immunity during times of illness. It can also be used to rebalance and keep the body healthy.

 

Wheatgrass

(Triticum aestivum)

Wheatgrass is quite possibly the closest thing to the fountain of youth and healing man has ever benefited from. It's nutritional profile is literally stunning. It's good for boosting energy and vitality levels, combating fatigue, detoxification, eliminating unhealthy bacteria, balancing gut and bowel health, balancing ph levels in blood, treating immune system deficiencies, improving clarity of thought Stabilising weight, metabolism and cravings, aiding cell regeneration.