7 TIPS FOR BOOSTING YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM
With winter upon us and a global pandemic in the mix, now is the perfect time to boost your immune system to help fight away those sneezes, sniffles and flu symptoms which are starting to make themselves shown.
The immune system is the body's defence against disease-causing microbes (pathogens). The immune system is made up of non-specialised defences such as your skin (acting as a barrier) and strong acid stomach juices. There are ways in which we can help our body increase these defences and help fight against those nasty little pathogens. Read on to find out what you can do to help stay healthy during these winter months!
1. SLEEP – getting plenty of sleep is really important especially during these months when the body uses more energy to try and stay warm. Sleep gives the body time to regenerate the immune system.
2. EXERCISE – there is a good reason you getting out of bed for those 6am bootcamp sessions! Exercise improves the body’s circulation, strength and lung capacity, giving the body the boost it needs to fight of sickness.
3. SUNSHINE – Vitamin D is known to help improve the immune system and it is also good for your mental health too, so make the most of these beautiful sunny days!
4. WATER – drink lots of water and avoid too much alcohol, be nice to your liver! Warm water and lemon is a great anti oxidant and will keep you warm too.
5. DIET – eat a healthy balanced diet and try to include some of these immune boosting foods (there are many more but start with these):
a. Grapefruit – packed with vitamin C
b. Berries – contain antioxidants which are responsible for the health of your immune system. They also contain vitamin C and magnesium, both important in maintaining strength of the immune system.
c. Cinnamon – is antiviral, anti fungal and anti bacterial, it actually fights the pathogens that cause illness.
d. Cruciferous vegetables – such as brocilli, cauliflower and brussel sprouts. These are rich in antioxidant vitamins and also contain Choline which helps keeps your cells working properly and maintains a healthy gastrointestinal tract.
e. Mushrooms – these little guys contain lots of the mineral zinc which is important for producing the white blood cells that help fight off disease
f. Greens such as Kale, Spinach and Swiss Chard – Contain high levels of vitamin C which helps to fight infection and also regenerate other antioxidants in the body including Vitamin E.
6. REDUCE STRESS LEVELS – try and take some time for yourself to reduce stress levels which can also affect your immune system. It is so easy to get carried away with social commitments, put yourself first and only commit to what you are happy with.
7. WASH YOUR HANDS – we should all be used to this after the last few months. Regularly sanitizing your hands and reduce the chance of getting a cold by 20% and other viruses by more than 50%
By following these steps as much as possible you will be giving your body the best chance to fight off the winter germs flying around – keeping you healthy and strong and ready to face the world : )
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