5 ways to fight sickness naturally

Healthyroo plant protein smoothie

Your physical health is one of the most important areas of life and ultimately dictates your quality of life. After all, what good is an abundance of possessions and amazing experiences if you don’t have the health to enjoy them? So whether you’re fighting off the dreaded flu or battling with something challenging, there are things you can do to ensure you’re not sick for any longer than you need to be. 

Here are five natural ways to boost your immune system and speed up your recovery next time you feel unwell.

1) Drink more water

Water helps transport oxygen and nutrients to the cells throughout your body, assisting your immune, nervous, and endocrine systems. When it comes to drinking water, it’s essential to consider the quality of your water, not just the taste. 

Chlorine is Australia’s most widely used water treatment method and the number one cause of bad-tasting tap water. And because your gut microbiome is made up of bacteria, you risk slowly destroying your gut bacteria over time if you don’t remove the chlorine from your water first. 

The best water you can drink is distilled water or reverse osmosis water. However, since not everyone can install a reverse osmosis water filter, many people (especially renters) invest in a Filteroo or a similar benchtop water filter that sits conveniently on the countertop.

Water filters remove chlorine, fluoride, heavy metals, bacteria, microplastics, viruses and many other impurities, making them essential for anyone wanting to maintain good health.

2) Get more rest

When you’re unwell, it’s tempting to continue with life as usual, especially if you don’t like telling the boss you can’t come to work. However, sleep is more important than ever when you’re fighting off sickness!1

While you sleep, immune cells ramp up their efforts to attack viruses, bacteria and dysfunctional cells. Significant hormonal changes also occur, such as the production of serotonin and melatonin. Melatonin helps you fight off sickness by scavaging free radicals and helping repair DNA. 

If you can find ways to get better sleep in general, you’ll be less susceptible to colds and cases of the flu when they come around. 

3) Eat more fruits

Fruits are an excellent source of nutrients essential for good health, including vitamins, minerals, and fibre. Fruits also contain antioxidants and flavonoids that can improve your health by protecting your cells from damage and reducing inflammation. Eating fruits2 daily while you’re sick will help you heal faster by getting the most nutrients and antioxidants into your cells. 

4) Consider fasting

The digestive system is a very large and complex system that takes up much of the body’s energy. When you fast, you reduce the load on your digestive system and allow your body to devote more energy towards healing. 

Fasting effectively cleanses and detoxifies the body, making it a powerful way to improve your overall health.3 Supported by generous amounts of juice or water, fasting promotes healing at max speed. Do your research first, and ensure you don’t have any health issues that could be made worse by extended fasts.

5) Boost your gut health

The diversity and health of your gut microbiome significantly affect many aspects of your immune system. Probiotics4 such as Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium help to prevent many strains of the cold or rhinovirus and reduce symptoms, but you need to start taking them for a few months before cold and flu season hits. 

Fermented foods such as sauerkraut, miso, kefir and kimchee are also great foods to encourage beneficial immune-building bacteria in your gut. 


Sleep and immune function https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3256323/

Fruits to boost immune system ollhttps://www.twinlab.com/blog/fruits-vegetables-and-herbs-to-boost-the-immune-system

VALTER LONGO studies show short-term fasting activates a process within the body called ‘autophagy’ Longo, Valter D., and Satchidananda Panda. “Fasting, circadian rhythms, and time-restricted feeding in healthy lifespan.” Cell metabolism 23, no. 6 (2016): 1048-1059. https://michelsonmedical.org/2014/12/26/igf-1-fasting-discussion-valter-longo/

Probiotics and the cold Hao Q et al. Probiotics for preventing acute upper respiratory tract infections. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2015;(2):CD006895.