Temperatures are getting cooler. Leaves are beginning to show the signs of change, so we all know what that means. Cold and flu season is upon us. Time to boost our immune system.
It’s not the chill in the air that exposes us to colds and the flu, but rather that cooler temperatures force us inside where our exposures increase.
Fear not! We are not defenseless, yet most people don’t take the necessary steps to protect themselves. There are steps we can take now to boost our immune system to defend us from these season enemies.
Your first and only line of defense are simple. Live a healthy lifestyle and your body will be primed to fend off colds and flu. Your immune system will function better, for that matter your entire body, when you live a healthy lifestyle.
So following these healthy lifestyle tips can set up your immune system for maximum protection this cold and flu season:
1. Get your micronutrient.
Time to go to school and practice our ABC’s. By that I mean ensure you are eating a diet rich in vitamins A, B, C, D, and E. These micronutrients play a fundamental role in your immune system response to an attack. The best source of these micronutrients is vegetables which seem like mom was right all along!
Plants will keep your body functioning and your immune system humming. Like your mom told you, eat your vegetables if you want to be big and vigorous.
2. Only drink in moderation.
Hey, I’m not going to be the party pooper, especially going into the holiday season. I get it, time to get your drink on! Just be careful.
Alcohol depresses your immune system, along with several other critical decision-making capabilities. Moderation is always the way to go, hence let’s just keep it to a few glasses of cheer.
3. Get enough sleep, please.
With adequate sleep, your immune system adapts to any foreign agent (antigens) entering your body by releasing antibodies.
Sleep deprivation suppresses this process making you more vulnerable to invading cold and flu viruses.
With some 50 million to 70 million Americans suffering from some sleep disorder. Yikes! That’s a lot of people with suppressed immune systems, therefore you’ll need an active immune system to stay healthy.
4. Focus on gut health.
A condition called leaky gut had been proven to weaken your immune system. Think about it. Your skin forms an almost impenetrable barrier, so most of what infects us enter through our mouths. Your gut is a critical link and a major player in your immune system’s health.
It has to keep the bad stuff out while simultaneously let the good stuff in. The best way to ensure a strong gut is through the promotion of probiotics while supporting a healthy diet.
You can do this by eating fermented vegetables (there’s that word again), kombucha, or take a high-quality probiotic supplement.
Spend time chilling out! Stress is a known contributor to a variety of adverse health outcomes, including reduced immune capacity. The practice of stress-reducing activities such as meditation, listening to music, getting a massage will do wonders fighting off seasonal viruses.
In conclusion, Boosting our immune system can be done naturally with just a few dietary and lifestyle decisions. Living a life of eating plenty of vegetables, exercising and getting quality sleep will lead to an iron-clad immune system, but most of all, fewer trips to the doctor’s office.
http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/features/immune-system-lack-of-sleep – 1