It’s that time of year where colds and illnesses are being passed around all too quickly. The foods we eat and the health of our digestive system are both key players in our ability to fight off illness. Improving or maintain gut health is critical to improving immunity as about 70% of your immune cells lie within your digestive system. You can improve gut health by decreasing sugar and processed foods and increasing probiotics, fermented foods, whole foods, and omega 3 fatty acids in your diet.
This tonic, along with adequate sleep and hydration, has helped me ward off numerous illnesses over the past couple years! I like making my own because I know exactly what is in it and the quality of the ingredients. Here are a few of the beneficial properties of each of the ingredients:
Garlic: anti-bacterial; anti-fungal; anti-viral
Onion: same as garlic but a little milder
Horseradish root: helps open up sinus passages and lungs; improve circulation
Ginger root: anti-inflammatory properties as well as a circulatory stimulant
Hot peppers: powerful circulatory stimulant to send other beneficial properties throughout the body
Immune Boosting Tonic
1 part yellow onion
1 part garlic
1 part fresh ginger root
1 part fresh horseradish root
1 part hot peppers (jalapeños, habaneros etc)
Raw apple cider vinegar
Put each ingredient through your food processor until it is chopped. Mix all the ingredients (except the apple cider vinegar) together in a large bowl and scoop mixture into jars until they are about 3/4 full. Pour apple cider vinegar over the top of the mixture and fill the jar until full. Cover tightly and shake.
Let jars sit in a cool, dark place for at least 2-4 weeks, shaking mixture daily.
After 2-4 weeks (or more) strain liquid and discard herbs and vegetables.
Take 1-3 teaspoons in water 1-2x daily for continued immune support or a 5-8x/daily at the first sign of illness.
You can start using this immediately after making, but letting it sit for several weeks allows more of immune boosting properties to be released into the apple cider vinegar.
Wear gloves while handling hot peppers
Start with small 1/2 cup to 1 cup quantities unless you want a large batch that will last you the year!