5 Natural ways to boost your immune system this Autumn

5 Natural ways to boost your immune system this Autumn

As we wave goodbye to summer adventures and welcome the allure of autumn colours, we brace ourselves for the incoming seasonal shifts. But the autumn transition can also usher in less welcome guests – seasonal colds and flu.

Fortunately, there are many natural ways we can strengthen our body's defences, helping us stride into the colder months with a fortified immune system.

Let's explore our favourite holistic approaches to maintaining wellness throughout the coming months and learn about the natural ingredients that'll help bolster our defences.



Pumpkins, butternut squash, carrots and oranges all get their vibrant colour from beta-carotene, a form of vitamin A that acts as an antioxidant and regulates our immune system.

Furthermore, these colourful veggies pack a punch with other health-promoting nutrients like potassium, vitamin C, vitamin B6, fibre, lycopene, and flavonoids. Brightly coloured foods contain phytonutrients (or ‘plant nutrients’) which can help prevent disease.


Sleep loss negatively affects the immune system in three ways:

  • By reducing the body’s production of natural killer cells, which in turn increases the risk of viral infections.
  • Generating inflammatory cytokines, which heightens the risk for cardiovascular and metabolic disorders
  • Reducing the production of antibodies, which help fight viruses and other infections

Aim for seven to eight hours of restful sleep daily. The adaptogen, Ashwagandha, is excellent for promoting good sleep. See The Herbtender's Doze & Dream supplement.


Chronic stress weakens your immune function. Try to manage your stress - simple breathing exercises are a helpful strategy. We love the 4-7-8 technique — inhale for 4 counts, hold for 7 counts, exhale for 8 counts. Performing this exercise at least four times stimulates the vagus nerve and triggers a relaxation response.

Additionally, immerse yourself in nature through the Japanese practice of ‘shinrin-yoku’. Engaging your senses while being in nature can work wonders for stress reduction.


Exercise has many health benefits, not least lowering the production of stress hormones like cortisol, which can suppress the immune system. Physical activity also boosts overall circulation, which makes it easier for immune cells and other infection-fighting molecules to travel throughout your body.

Aim for activities that get your heart pumping, and consider exercising outdoors for the added benefits of fresh air and nature's calming influence.


The Herbtender's Daily Defence (The Immunity Mix) is our powerhouse blend that harnesses the strength of adaptogens and herbs to enhance your immunity and overall well-being. This immune-charging super mix can be taken daily as a prophylactic to keep your immune system in top form or when you feel you might be coming down with something.

Here are the natural ingredients included and why they're so powerful:


Chaga mushroom - our favourite mushroom for immunity support. Chaga grows on birch trees and is the most antioxidant-rich superfood on the planet (1,014 ORAC* units per gramme, compared to 165 in Acai berries or 105 in pomegranates)!

Like other edible mushrooms, Chaga contains a wealth of important nutrients, including manganese, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, copper, and phosphorus. It can also give a nice energy boost without the jitters and contains naturally occurring B complex vitamins and vitamin D. These vitamins and nutrients contribute to your overall health and give your body the fuel it needs to thrive.

Cytokines are the immune system's chemical messengers. These proteins play a vital role in stimulating white blood cells, which are the immune system's first line of defence against illness. Chaga may help regulate the production of cytokines, supporting the immune system by helping cells communicate with one another.

Reishi mushroom - known as the ‘mushroom of immortality’ because of its use to strengthen the heart, prolong life and support the immune system. When consuming Reishi as part of your daily routine, you increase the number of beneficial phytochemicals your body has to work with, improving your resilience.

Cordyceps mushroom - gives more sustained energy than caffeine! A powerful pick-me-up, Cordyceps can help the body utilise oxygen more efficiently and enhance blood flow.

Astragalus root - has been used for centuries to stimulate the immune system, working to prevent colds and respiratory infections. Considered the ‘leader’ of the tonic herbs, it's often used to keep infection at bay and support the system as a whole.


Echinacea - best known for its beneficial effects on the immune system. Studies have found that taking echinacea increases natural killer cells, total white cell count and heat shock proteins in the body**. It may help your immune system combat infections and viruses, helping you to recover faster.

Acerola Cherry - provides vitamin C, known to contribute to the normal function of the immune system and the protection of cells from oxidative stress.

Yarrow and Cinnamon - bring warmth and blood flow to maximise efficacy.

Buy The Herbtender's Daily Defence (The Immunity Mix) here.

If you have any questions about the above or anything else The Herbtender related, we'd love to hear from you. Feel free to leave a comment below, pop us an email (hello@the-herbtender.com) or send us a DM at @theherbtender.

* ORAC, short for Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity, is a test tube analysis that measures the total antioxidant power of foods and other chemical substances.

** Agnew LL et al in Journal of Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics 2005; 30: 363-369

Miller SC. Echinacea: a miracle herb against ageing and cancer? Evidence in vivo in mice. eCAM 2005; 2(3): 309-314

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