As we enter the cold and flu season, I want to take some time to discuss functional foods and botanicals that will benefit immune health.
- Barberry is a beneficial herb for infection, feverish colds, and urinary tract infections. It has also shown benefits in reducing heartburn and arthritis. There are no contraindications with the utilization of barberry, but caution should be taken with pregnancy, biliary colic, lactation, and kidney disease.
- Myrrh has been utilized for thousands of years, and it is beneficial for the common cold, pharyngitis, and respiratory catarrh. Myrrh is contraindicated in pregnancy and lactation though, and has an interaction with anti-hyperglycemic medications.
- Echinacea can be utilized as a preventative botanical, as well as during sickness. It is used for the common cold, fever, cough, bronchitis, urinary tract infections, and infections of the throat and mouth. Autoimmune diseases, tuberculosis, HIV and AIDS, diabetes, and pregnancy are contraindicated in the use of Echinacea.
- Biscuitroot is anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and is an immuno-stimulant. Biscuitroot is beneficial for bronchitis, colds, sinusitis, and rotavirus, and there are no contraindications for its use.
The use of a variety of immune related botanicals and functional foods are greatly beneficial in preserving our health during the season of sickness.