7 Ways to Naturally Boost Your Immune System

The Dusty Hippie is about being kind to your body, mind, the Earth, and all of its inhabitants. Mother Nature has given us an abundance of natural ways to heal the body. Here are some of our top tips to strengthen your immune system and help your body fight off whatever comes your way.

Eat Plants! 

Superfood Smoothies

Smoothies are a great way to get your daily intake of fruits and veggies. Having a variety of fruits and vegetables every day is the best way to fight off disease and infection. Here are some of our favorite smoothie combos. You can mix and match with things you already have to build the perfect smoothie!

How to Build the Perfect Smoothie:

  • Choose a fruit: Berries are an excellent source of antioxidants and contain phytochemicals called anthocyanins. Anthocyanins offer anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, and anti-cancer benefits. Bananas, mangos, pineapples, peaches, kiwi, orange, lemon, and acai are all great in smoothies as well.

  • Veggies: Celery, parsley, cilantro, kale, spinach, swiss chard, and green peppers are all great veggies that add extra nutrients like vitamin K, iron, fiber, and vitamin C to your daily diet. Getting your daily dose of leafy green vegetables does wonders for your health. Adding spinach or kale to a smoothie is a great way to do this because you can’t even taste the difference!

  • Add some superfoods: flax seeds, chia seeds, maca root powder, hemp seeds, goji berries, cacao nibs, moringa powder, spirulina, bee pollen are all great ways to boost the immune system and add some extra nutrition.

  • Healthy Fats: almond butter, peanut butter, avocado, hemp oil

  • Sweeteners: dates, honey, agave syrup, maple syrup

  • Pick a Base: Vegan probiotic yogurt, almond milk, coconut milk, cashew milk, flax milk, water, coconut water

 

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Superfood Smoothie Goodness

This delicious superfood smoothie included celery, dates, cinnamon, cacao nibs, moringa powder, frozen bananas, and spinach. Top it off with some coconut milk and blend for immune boosting perfection.

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Medicinal Superfood Mushrooms

Not culinary mushrooms… not magic mushrooms… medicinal mushrooms. Although after you try them, you may consider them magic.

Four Sigmatic and Rainbo are some of our favorite brands that have some of the best mushroom elixirs for getting your daily dose of wellness. Medicinal mushrooms are great for overall wellbeing. Not only have they been shown to support immune function, they also increase energy and enhance brain functions like focus, memory, and creativity. Chaga contains one of the highest antioxidant content of any food, which acts to protect DNA, slow the aging process and even provide skin-protection against UV-light induced damage. Chaga extract enhances the immune system in response to infection and suppress inflammation. Lion’s mane has been shown to decrease anxiety and irritation. Reishi is an adaptogen that helps the body manage and adapt to stress. It also has been shown to support a healthy sleep cycle.

  • This 11:11 super dual extract mushroom blend is a superfood tincture containing 11 different medicinal mushrooms

  • For more information about the power of mushrooms, check out their blog post here!

Add 11:11 to any beverage!

We love adding the 11:11 Rainbo Dual Extract to our coffee every morning to get that mushroom fix! If you don’t drink coffee, you could also add it to green tea, which has anti-viral effects.

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Nutritional Yeast

In a study of healthy women under moderate levels of perceived psychological stress, those taking just one teaspoon of nutritional yeast a day worth of beta-glucans for 12 weeks were 60% less likely to report experiencing symptoms, like sore throat, stuffed or runny nose, or cough—strongly suggesting that baker’s, brewer’s, and nutritional yeast “beta-glucan is able to counteract the negative effects of stress on the immune system.” And, they experienced 41% greater vigor (which is a measure that encompasses “physical energy, mental acuity, and emotional well-being”). So, they just felt better, too.

You can add this to almost any recipe. We love to add it to roasted chickpeas, vegan mac & cheese, and salad dressings.

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Garlic

Garlic is a natural immune system enhancer and has anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-cancer properties-it has been proven to fight infection, build strength, and increase health and energy. Chopping up some cloves of garlic and adding it to potatoes, mushroom, pasta and vegetable dishes are a great way to incorporate it into your daily routine.

The only draw back is having garlic breath (although it might not matter too much in quarantine). To get rid of nasty garlic breathe, just eat some carrots. They’ve been proven to neutralize the odor. If you don’t believe us, just try it yourself! If you still can’t stand the taste (or the odor!), these garlic tablets are a great way to get the benefits without the breath.

Buy More Plants

Did you know, that having more plants increases empathy, improves mental health, boosts your immune system, and improves relationships? Plants have chemicals that reduce stress, which naturally boosts your immune system. Norway has done studies where illnesses have decreased up to 60% by having more household plants. This is especially helpful if you are unable to get out in nature.

Take Your Shots

Skip the alcohol and go for some homemade-immune boosting shots instead. Simply blend or juice the ingredients, or incorporate these foods into your daily meals to help fight off viruses and bacteria.

  • Ginger

  • Garlic

  • Cayenne

  • Tumeric

  • Lemon

  • Apple Cider Vinegar

And lastly, stress management. Stressful life events can impair our moist membrane defenses, such that “psychological stress has been shown to increase susceptibility to the common cold,” getting more colds, and worse colds, than people under less stress.

It’s hard not to freak out when the world seems to be falling apart. Finding little ways to manage your stress can make a big difference. Some of our favorites include spending time in nature, taking a walk, calling someone you love, journaling, painting, reading, or doing yoga. Wear clothes that make you feel confident and know that you are making a positive impact on the earth. Be kind to the earth, your body, and trust the healing process.


Stay safe, protect our earth, and be a rebel by being ethical.