Whether the timing is cold and flu season, you’re not feeling the best, or you’re thinking of taking preventive measures to stay healthy, we are sharing our favorite ways to support your immune system.
Your immune system is your body’s first guard against disease. Your immune system consists of cells, tissues, and organs that work together to fight infections instigated by bacteria, viruses, and toxins. Although everyone gets sick periodically, there are steps we can do regularly to help keep our immune system healthy.
Many of us realize that the food we consume every day affects our health. From a young age, the message is to don’t forget about your veggies. But what are ideas of the best foods to eat to help ensure our immune systems remain healthy?
Foods high in Vitamin C are great for supporting your body and improving white blood cells, which help challenge diseases. Examples are oranges, grapefruits, lemons, kiwi, and papaya. But Vitamin C isn’t only found in fruits! Vegetables, like red bell peppers, broccoli, and spinach, are packed with Vitamin C.
Vitamin B-6 is a critical nutrient that helps with the creation of additional red blood cells. So while Vitamin C helps boost white blood cells, Vitamin B-6 does the same for red blood cells. A great amount of Vitamin B-6 can be located in proteins like chicken, turkey, fish, and eggs.
If you’re scouring for a yummy, nourishing salad, begin with a base of spinach and leafy greens (Vitamin C), incorporate your favorite fruit or vegetable (more Vitamin C!), and top with a wholesome protein like chicken (Vitamin B-6) and a number of almonds or seeds to provide a healthy fat.
And remind yourself to hydrate! The adult human body contains 60% water. In order to obtain optimal hydration, drink your weight divided by two in ounces. For example, at 160 pounds, you need to consume 80 ounces of water daily.
Build Your Body
Did you know that your lymphatic system, which is the system for eliminating waste and toxins in your body, is the only system that can’t do its job without movement? To help support your lymphatic system moving, you must move too. By creating movement, your body distributes white blood cells and antibodies more rapidly, which can help these cells find and combat infections quicker than if you stay inactive.
Not only is staying lively a large factor of a healthy body, movement is also essential to your mental health! Stress plays a role in your health. Research shows that individuals who experience ongoing stress are more apt to have unstable immune systems, which could result in more common illness. Routine exercise helps steady stress hormones, for example cortisol, resulting in you content and healthy!
Not feeling well? It’s okay to take a break! There is no reason to push yourself to exercise if you’re unwell or wounded. Heeding to your body and providing it the rest it needs is just as important.
Get Plenty of Zzzs
Now that you’ve meal prepped your wholesome food for the next few days and moved your body with some exercise, it’s time to rest! Sleep is a process used so your body reestablishes homeostasis, otherwise referred to as chemical balance within the body. While sleeping, your body is able to control your immune system, make healthy cells, and eliminate damaged cells. Rest is vital to your body’s ability to keep healthy.
Even though sleep needs fluctuate by each person, experts counsel adults reach 7-9 hours of sleep every night. If you have difficulty falling asleep or remaining asleep, try implementing a sleep schedule – all week long. Similar to diet and exercise, a sleep routine is key to a body that is healthy and happy.
Eating healthy, nutrient-dense snacks and meal items, moving your body and exercising, and observing your body and offering it adequate rest are several ways to care for and boost your immune system.