Most people start to think about boosting their immune systems in autumn when the threat of cold and flu season is looming.
But the truth is, we are constantly exposed to viruses, bacteria, and allergens that can weaken our defenses and leave us feeling under the weather. Beyond sniffles and coughs, a weak immune system can also lead to low energy and even chronic illness. That’s why every season is a good season to boost your immunity!
While there are many ways to boost our immunity, Chinese herbs are one of the most powerful natural ways to enhance the body's built-in defenses. Read on to discover some of the most commonly used herbs for immune boosting and how they can help you achieve optimal health.
7 Herbs that Boost the Immune System
Herbal medicine has been used to support and strengthen the immune system for millennia. Here are a few of the most commonly used Chinese medicine herbs and formulas for immune power:
Elderberry is a dark black fruit that has been used for centuries for its medicinal properties. It is best known for speeding up recovery from viral infections like colds and flu, but it can also strengthen the immune system to help you avoid getting sick in the first place.
Both fresh and dried ginger are powerful anti-inflammatory herbs that can help support the immune system. Ginger also has antibacterial properties, making it an effective remedy for sore throats and other respiratory infections. Ginger can be added to tea or used in cooking.
Turmeric is not just a delicious spice to add to your favorite stir fries and curries. It is an herbal medicinal high in curcumin, a powerful anti-inflammatory antioxidant. Curcumin can help support the immune system by reducing inflammation in the body.
Chrysanthemum tea is often consumed in fall and spring – and for good reason. This flower contains a high concentration of antioxidants and flavonoids that help strengthen the immune system to fight off colds and allergies during the vulnerable change of seasons. Chrysanthemum flower has also been found to have anti-inflammatory properties, which help prevent chronic immune dysfunction.
Huang qi, also known as astragalus root, is a traditional Chinese herb that is best known for boosting energy and immunity. The herb contains a variety of compounds, including polysaccharides and saponins, that have been shown to enhance the immune system by stimulating the production of white blood cells and other immune cells. Huang qi has also been found to have antibacterial and antiviral properties, which can help protect the body against infections. Regular consumption of huang qi supplements or tea can help improve overall health and boost the body's natural defense against diseases.
Hong Jing Tian
Like huang qi, hong jing tian is an herbal adaptogen that supports the body’s natural defenses. While it is primarily used to relieve the harmful effects of stress, studies also show that the herb has immune-boosting and anti-inflammatory properties as well.
Reishi mushroom is known as “the Great Protector” by TCM practitioners because of its many health benefits. Along with supporting your natural energy levels and supporting mood balance, reishi also benefits the immune system and keeps allergies at bay. Studies show that reishi contains compounds that boost white blood cells, making it easier for the immune system to mount an effective response to pathogens.
Chinese Herbal Formulas for Immune Boosting
While single herbs can be helpful to improve immune health, Chinese herbal formulas offer a targeted and well-rounded approach to boosting the immune system. Along with actively supporting immune health, these formulas also significantly reduce inflammation and address the underlying cause of a weak or overactive immune system.
CytoSupport is an herbal tincture that prevents viral infections from thriving. Herbs like huang qin and ginger work to prevent viruses from entering host cells and replicating. Their potent anti-inflammatory effects also calm the cytokine storm that often follows an infection.
Nei Wei Qi
There are many different types of Qi that circulate in the body. One specialized type is “Wei Qi.” Wei Qi is the qi that circulates at the surface of the body and defends us against external pathogens and makes up a substantial part of the immune system in Chinese medicine. This formula combines a blend of herbs that both fight infection and build and support your body’s Wei Qi from the root.
Wen Bing Defense Formula
This formula fights what Chinese medicine considers “wind-heat” pathogens. These infections and allergies cause hot, painful symptoms like sore throats, dry coughs, sticky yellow mucus, and rashes. The Wen Bing Defense formula neutralizes inflammation with cooling anti-inflammatory herbs to restore your balance and bring you back to health.
Shanghan Lun Defense Formula
In contrast to the Wen Bing Defense Formula, the Shanghan Lun Defense Formula addresses immune conditions with a cold or damp nature (like chills, runny nose or aching muscles). The herbal tincture works to strengthen the immune system, eliminate cold pathogens, warm the channels and restore lung and respiratory health.
A daily tea tonic like Plum Dragon Herb’s Immuni-Tea can help you boost immunity and overcome allergies all year long. This fragrant blend contains anise, elderflower, rose hips, yarrow and peppermint to keep your immunity in balance.
Boost Your Immunity From the Root with Herbal Medicine
As you can see, there are many herbs for immune boosting, all thanks to Mother Nature. Whether you choose to use single herbs or a Plum Dragon Herbs immunity tincture or tea blend, herbal medicinals are a simple yet effective way to stay healthy year-round. Learn more about our immune support line here!