Can you share some of your tried-and-true plant-based recommendations or ingredients/ingredient pairings for supporting and/or boosting immunity?
Yes! I love medicinal mushrooms for immunity and for use with a wide variety of clients. Medicinal, or functional mushrooms are immunomodulators, which means that they help our immune system to be active, but not overactive. (They’re also great for brain health and energy utilization in the body.)
I also live on ginger and garlic during times of high immunity awareness. I have a ginger concentrate recipe that makes having ginger shots on-tap too easy.
Vitamins C and D are important, and herbs like elderberry and echinacea can be helpful depending on what we’re treating.
Topping the list is: Eliminate sugar! Or, get as close as you can. I even avoid fruit and honey when prioritizing immunity. Stay warm and lean into spice and heat rather than coldness and sweet.
What value or ethic most consistently shapes your relationship to holistic wellness?
Nature knows. Foods are produced perfectly by the planet and it’s our processing and modifying them that gets us into trouble. All plant-based foods are medicinal. Our bodies are also part of nature and they are determined to be healthy, if only we’ll give them what they need, and get out of the way. Everything is connected - we to each other and we within ourselves and to the environment - but we’re losing the ability to listen.
To sum that up, I believe that health is inherent, holistic, and achievable if only we learn how to live in sync with ourselves and nature.
How do you tend to your relationship with the natural world?
By listening! Always always - from tuning into the breeze to respecting more intuitive ways of hearing the world. I am outside as much as possible (even living in NYC) and my windows are open. I eat plant-based and unprocessed, consume a ton of herbs (which I never take for granted and so thoroughly enjoy!!), travel whenever possible, detach from tech and screens religiously, and I respect nature - I work with its power everyday in the form of nutrition and herbs for clients - which often feels like an homage.