Your immunity is an impressive defense system against an array of pathogens that can cause anything from mild to life-threatening illnesses. Unfortunately, there’s no magic pill that instantly boosts this remarkable system. However, there are many lifestyle modifications that you can make today to improve your immunity and overall health.
Here are our top 7 tips to boost your immunity naturally:
1. Kick back and relax
A little stress can be healthy to help you get things done, but too much stress can be very harmful to your body. Modern research has linked stress to multiple conditions such as depression, heart disease, and stomach ulcers.
Recently, it’s also been linked to an increased incidence of infections as it causes a disturbance to the immune system. Researchers have found that those under chronic stress are more likely to get sick than others.
So next time you’re under pressure, try to de-stress through yoga or meditation. If you feel overwhelmed, you might want to seek professional help to learn better coping methods.
2. Eat well
Your diet is an essential part of your health. Not only does eating well protect you from many lifestyle-related diseases such as diabetes, but it will also strengthen your immune system and help you fight off infections.
Start incorporating fruits and vegetables into your diet, as they are an excellent source of vitamins and antioxidants which help reduce inflammation and fight off infection.
Also, use healthy sources of fat such as olive oil which is rich in Omega-3s and has also been shown to have anti-inflammatory actions.
3. Cut back on unhealthy food
This one might seem obvious, but I cannot stress it enough. A diet full of saturated fats, processed foods, refined carbs mixed with a high sugar intake is a recipe for disaster.
It multiplies your risk of many conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and obesity which all lower your immunity and leave you susceptible to infections.
One study found that 9.8% of obese adults who received the flu shot will develop influenza in contrast to just 5.1% of healthy-weight adults.
So next time you’re craving junk food, try to talk yourself into choosing healthy and delicious alternatives and it will pay off in the long run.
4. Run for your life
If you read into the benefits of exercising, you will definitely incorporate it into your daily routine. All you need is 30 minutes per day to unlock a multitude of health benefits.
Whether it’s walking, jogging, or strength training, any form of exercise will promote your overall health and thereby help your body fight off infections.
However, don’t get carried away as too much exercise can become a stressor and suppress your immunity. Always consult with your physician before starting a workout program to make sure it suits your health and fitness level.
The power of sleep is quite underestimated in our modern world. Sleep deprivation and running on coffee are unfortunately considered normal by most people nowadays due to their increasingly demanding jobs.
However, lack of sleep can take its toll on your health. One study has linked shorter sleeping durations with increased susceptibility to the common cold.
Adults need around 7-8 hours of sleep per day, with teenagers and children requiring more hours according to their age.
To fall asleep easier, you can try waking up and going to bed at approximately the same times each day. You should also try to listen to some relaxing music before going to sleep and limit your screen time before bed.
6. Vitamin Defense
Many people have vitamin deficiencies without being aware of it. However, some deficiencies such as that of vitamin D have been linked to an increased risk of infections.
Consider increasing your intake of vitamin D rich foods such as beef liver, egg yolk, and milk. You can also try to increase your exposure to the sunlight (in moderation).
If you suspect that you are deficient in vitamin D, you can take a simple blood test to measure your vitamin D levels. Once you get your results, you can consult with your doctor about supplements and their appropriate dosage.
No matter how much you take good care of your health, getting an infection now and then is inevitable.
Don’t worry though, this is absolutely normal. The key is to give your body plenty of rest to allow it to recharge before going back to your daily routine. While it is tempting to push yourself into jumping right back into your routine as soon as you feel slightly better, this might be counter-productive as it will delay your recovery.
So next time you start to feel the symptoms of an infection, just sit back and relax till your body has made a full recovery. Remember, always seek medical advice in case of infection as your doctor might want to prescribe some medications.
So there you have it, simple steps you can take today to boost your immunity. Of course, it’s easier said than done, but investing in your health is always a good idea. Start making these changes today and your future self will thank you for it.
Always remember: your health is your most valuable possession. Luckily, every little step you take towards a healthier lifestyle pays off and leaves you feeling better and stronger.
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