The Most Important Herbs & Essential Oils To Boost Your Immune System During COVID-19
Coronaviruses are a broad family of viruses that typically cause mild to moderate upper-respiratory tract illnesses, similar to the common cold in humans. There are hundreds of coronaviruses, most of which travel among animals, including pigs, camels, bats, and cats. Sometimes those viruses jump to humans and can cause disease.
According to the University of Iowa, three of the coronaviruses can have more severe outcomes in people. Those viruses are SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome caused by the virus SARS-CoV-1), which emerged in late 2002; MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome), which appeared in 2012; and COVID-19, which emerged in December 2019 from China. COVID-19 is caused by the coronavirus known as SARS-CoV-2 and is the human coronavirus most closely related to SARS-CoV-1.
According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), “the virus is observable in aerosols for up to three hours, up to four hours on copper, up to 24 hours on cardboard, and up to two to three days on plastic and stainless steel.” This research suggests that people may acquire the virus through the air and after touching contaminated objects. In the stability study, the two viruses behaved similarly. However, SARS-CoV-1 was eradicated in 2002 by intensive contact tracing and case isolation measures. The question arises then if both viruses behave the same, then why SARS-CoV-2 is resulting in a lot more cases? This is what scientists in this study highlighted:
“Emerging evidence suggests that people infected with SARS-CoV-2 might be spreading the virus without recognizing, or before recognizing symptoms. This would make disease control measures that were effective against SARS-CoV-1 less effective against its successor.
In contrast to SARS-CoV-1, most secondary cases of virus transmission of SARS-CoV-2 appear to be occurring in community settings rather than healthcare settings. However, healthcare settings are also vulnerable to the introduction and spread of SARS-CoV-2, and the stability of SARS-CoV-2 in aerosols and on surfaces likely contributes to the transmission of the virus in healthcare settings.”
The good news is that thanks to research investments into the SARS and MERS outbreaks, scientists and grantees are better prepared to develop diagnostics, therapeutics, and vaccines against COVID-19, and a global effort is underway to contain its spread.
In the meantime, I want to share with you a few natural methods that can support your health during this challenging time we are all going through. Many interventions are possible with plant medicines for respiratory conditions such as this, and unlike pharmaceuticals, viruses don’t develop resistance to them. Thousands of plant medicines may be used to support you during this time. I will list some of the ones I have found useful.
SEE ALSO: How To Find Peace In A Pandemic
Herbs for SARS and other respiratory conditions
Coronaviruses like SARS attached to the surfaces of the lung, lymph, and spleen epithelial cells. That is why herbs like Licorice, Chinese skullcap, horse chestnut, and plants high procyanidins and lectins such as elder and cinnamon are helpful, that is because they block the attachment to varying degrees.
Kudzu, Hawthorn, and Ginkgo upregulate and protect Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE-2) function and activity. It is an enzyme attached to the outer surface of cells in the lungs, arteries, heart, kidney, and intestines. ACE2 also serves as the entry point into cells for some coronaviruses. Therefore, these herbs may protect the lungs from injury, which are one of the main concerns with this virus.
Dong Quai (Angelica Sinensis ) and Astragalus lower prostaglandin E2 and TGF. Which both increases as this type of infection progresses because, in general, high levels of prostaglandins are produced in response to injury or infection and cause inflammation, which is associated with the symptoms of redness, swelling, pain, and fever. The immunomodulatory activity of Dong Quai has been extensively studied both in vitro and in vivo. It has been found that Dong Quai has an excellent anti-inflammatory profile. Research also shows that Dong Quai increases the proliferation of total spleen cells, macrophages, and T cells by primary activation of non-specific immunity and secondary activation of helper T cells.
The herb Rhodiola prevents hypoxia-induced by oxidative damage caused by this virus; it also increases intracellular oxygen diffusion. It increases the efficiency of oxygen utilization, again all-important function when you are infected since this virus since it causes massive damage to the lung, lymph, and spleen tissue. Rhodiola and Astragalus also reduce the autoimmune response that is created with this virus.
Cordyceps, Olive oil, Olive leaf, and the Berberine plants are cilia protective herbs that support the body during this illness because the virus targets explicitly and replicates within ciliated cells, destroying the cells and their capacity to move mucus up and out of the lungs. Calendula, Cleavers, Redroot, Poke root, and Chinse skullcap are essential during this time because they protect lymph and spleen as this virus produces massive damage to both. Stimulating dendritic cell maturation and increasing T cell counts will reduce the symptom picture and disease severity, herbs, and supplements for this include Cordyceps, Licorice, Redroot, Elder, and Zinc.
Echinacea stimulates the immune system and prevents and treats upper respiratory tract infections. Studies suggest that it stimulates cells in the body whose primary function is to fight invading particles and organisms. White blood cells and spleen cells increase in number when echinacea is taken. Moreover, herbs like Artemisia annua, Eucalyptus, Gentian, and Panax ginseng have been found to be active against coronaviruses.
Natural protocol for respiratory infections
If you are NOT in an emergency situation (like having a hard time breathing), your doctor has instructed you to stay home, and you were not given any conventional medical treatment, this natural protocol may help you. Otherwise, seek medical attention immediately. The natural protocol to follow if you find yourself infected with this virus will be the same as for influenza, which includes taking herbal tinctures Like the ones I designed for immune support, antimicrobial, and respiratory support.
In addition to the herbs mentioned above you can take the following antimicrobial herbs: Chaparral, Clove, Garlic, Ginger, Goldenseal, Oregon grape root (and all the berberines), Juniper, Licorice, Lomatium, Myrrh, Oregano, Thyme.
As part of your protocol, it will be vital for you also to include an immune support formula. There are many powerful herbs that you can use to help increase the strength of your immune system. However, in addition to the herbs mentioned above include: Astragalus root, Black Elderberry (Sambucus), Angelica sinensis, Rosehips, Reishi and Shiitake Mushrooms. It is also super important during this time to protect the lungs with respiratory support herbs. Those include Osha, Yerba santa, Grindelia, Mullein, Lobelia, Elecampane, and Coltsfoot, Wild Cherry bark, among other herbs.
Once you have become infected, it will become essential for you to consume the antimicrobial, immune support, and respiratory support tinctures:
- every two hours for the first two days,
- after that, you can take it every 4 hours until the infection resolves.
If you feel better before seven days, continue the protocol but only take the herbs two times per day for at least seven days, preferably 14.
The other essential step if you are infected is to take fresh ginger tea. Ginger is useful to fight infections only if you use the fresh root. Dried ginger is useless for this. Make a ginger tea by adding one oz of fresh ginger juice to 7oz. of warm water, add a little bit of lemon, honey, and a pinch of cayenne. Drink this time 6 to 8 times per day. This will help end the infection faster, slow the spread of the virus in the body, thin out mucus, and help protect mucus membranes from damage.
Zinc and selenium are beneficial, both have been found to protect during severe influenza strains. Dosage 200 mcg daily of selenium and 25- 40 mg daily of zinc. Herbs do work and are highly effective but only if they are extracted and formulated correctly, you have to use organic high-quality herbs and take the correct dose.
You can also find relief with essential oils. Many essential oils have powerful antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-fungal properties. Studies have shown that just like herbs, certain essential oils are as powerful as over the counter medications for treating infections. The following are a few of my favorite antimicrobial essential oils: tea tree oil, grapefruit, oregano, cinnamon, thyme, lemon, clove oil, basil.
I have found these essential oils to be so potent that I make it part of my essential oil antimicrobial formula, this formula that works wonders to create antibacterial soap, clean counters, disinfect boxes, or for hand sanitizer. I just love them!
The complete list of antimicrobial essential oils is long; others include but are not limited to peppermint, eucalyptus, lavender, palmarosa, lemongrass, orange, geranium, and citronella. All essential oils are very potent and need to be diluted in water or a carrier oil (like coconut oil) before using on skin. You can select the appropriate oils for your needs and make your essential oil blend. I already have some very useful essential oil formulas for. These are two of my favorites antimicrobial blends:
Formula 1. Not only does this spice blend have a fresh-baked pumpkin pie scent, but it will also help you relax and disinfect the air. It is also a great substitute for those synthetically perfumed candles.
Pumpkin Spice Aroma Essential Oil Blend
- Twenty drops cinnamon essential oils
- Twenty drops ginger essential oils
- Twenty drops nutmeg essential oils
- Fifteen drops clove bud essential oils
- Five drops cardamom essential oils
Add all essential oils to a glass bottle. One one-quarter ounce bottle will hold this blend perfectly. Screw the cap on tightly and invert the bottle to blend the oils. Diffusing: Fill your essential oil diffuser reservoir with water. Add five to six drops of the Pumpkin Spice Essential Oil Blend. Light a tea candle in the base of your diffuser and enjoy as your space fills with this spicy aroma!
Citrus Antimicrobial Aroma Essential Oil Blend
- Twenty drops lemon essential oils
- Twenty drops lime essential oils
- Twenty drops eucalyptus essential oils
- Fifteen drops lemongrass bud essential oils
- Five drops rosemary essential oils
Add all essential oils to a glass bottle. One one-quarter ounce bottle will hold this blend perfectly. Screw the cap on tightly and invert the bottle to blend the oils. I love to use this blend to create a DIY nontoxic Febreze to deodorize my furniture.
Diffusing: Fill your essential oil diffuser reservoir with water. Add five to six drops of the Citrus Essential Oil Blend. Light a tea candle in the base of your diffuser and enjoy as your space fills with this clean and bright aroma!
Hand sanitizer is super easy and simple
- 1 TBSP rubbing alcohol
- 1/2 tsp vegetable glycerin
- 1/4 cup aloe vera gel2
- Essential oils: 10 drops cinnamon, 10 drops tea tree oil, ten drops lemon, ten drops orange, 3 drops oregano, 3 drops thyme. Or you can add 50 drops of my essential oil antimicrobial formula.
To make, mix glycerin, essential oils, and rubbing alcohol in a small bowl. Mix well. Add aloe vera gel and mix again—transfer hand sanitizer into spray or pump type bottles. Use as you would any other type of hand sanitizer. This product is strong, so do not use on babies or infants younger than two years old. Note the antimicrobial properties in this formula come from the essential oils, not the alcohol itself.
Natural Disinfectant Kitchen Cleaning Solution
- 1/2 cup vodka or one tablespoon as rubbing alcohol
- 3 TBSP castile soap
- 1 ½ cups distilled water
- Essential oils: 20 drops cinnamon, 20 drops tea tree oil, 20 drops lemon, 20 drops orange, 10 drops oregano, 10 drops thyme. Or you can add 100 drops of my essential oil antimicrobial formula.
In a bowl, add the soap, alcohol, and essential oils. Stir well to combine. Add water, stir well. Transfer mix into a 16 oz airtight container (could be a spray bottle). Use this product to disinfect and clean surfaces around the house. Herbal supplements do work and are highly effective, but only if you are using high-quality ingredients that are given in the right quantity and that have been extracted correctly. So work with a qualified professional if you need to.
Get Daily Wellness
You might also like…
- by Dr. Paul Haider 31 SECONDS READ
- by Cristela Mejica 9 MINUTE READ
- by Dr. Paul Haider 25 SECONDS READ
- by Dr. Paul Haider 38 SECONDS READ
- by Dr. Paul Haider 38 SECONDS READ
- by Mia Barnes 7 MINUTE READ