It’s that time of the year once again…Winter has begun, and now is the time to look after yourself to boost your body’s natural defences to help prevent all those unwanted winter illness.
The immune system has a vital role in your body as it protects from harmful substances, germs, bacteria, virus, and toxins that can make you sick. If your immune system is in tip-top shape, you shouldn’t get hit with unwanted sicknesses such as a cold or flu, but if you do get sick you might only experience mild symptoms.
So, how can you boost your immune system naturally for a healthier you from the inside out?
Here are 8 tips to get you going:
1. Add more whole plant foods to your diet
Whole plant foods such as vegetables, fruit, seeds, nuts, and legumes contain high amounts of nutrients and antioxidants. The antioxidants in this type of food can help combat free radicals, which are formed in the body and when in high levels, it can cause inflammation in the body.
The fibre you will get from eating these foods will also add a great benefit to your gut health. If you have a healthy gut microbiome, you can improve your immunity. Other benefits of fruits and vegetables are that usually, this type of food is high in nutrients such as vitamin C, which is believed to reduce the duration of the common cold.
2. Sleep well
We all know how important sleep is for the body, it helps the body to recover and grow. Having a good night sleep is also linked to your immune system, how many times you felt sick and all you wanted to do was sleep? Sleep helps the body to recovery as well as strength natural immunity.
Adults should aim for 7 or more hours of sleep each night, while children and teens require more hours of sleep. Poor quality sleep has been linked to higher chances of getting sick as well.
3. Take probiotics or eat more fermented foods
Probiotics and fermented foods are very beneficial for gut health as it provides the gut with good bacteria. High fermented foods such as kefir, yoghurt, sauerkraut, and kimchi are known for its benefits to gut bacteria. Probiotics are another option, especially with you don’t like fermented foods.
There’s a link between fermented foods and probiotics to gut health and immunity, as these two systems are both interconnected. Research has shown that the thriving network of gut bacteria can help the immune system to distinguish between normal healthy cells and damaging invader organisms.
4. Limit sugar intake
I’m sure you know this, too much sugar is no good for your health as it can lead to obesity as well as putting on weight, which can lead to your risk of getting sick. Reducing the amount of sugar you have can help to decrease inflammation, and it can also lead to weight loss.
Added sugar can also lead to many other health issues that can affect the immune system, such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and obesity. When you lower your sugar intake, it may help to decrease inflammation in the body as well as other health risks.
Recommended sugar metabolism products:
5. Exercise and stay hydrated
Moderate exercise and hydration can’t protect you from germs and virus. Still, they are essential to overall health and wellbeing. Moderate exercise may help to reduce inflammation in the body as it boosts immune cells to regenerate regularly.
While staying hydrated make you less susceptible to illness. Drinking water is free of calories, sugar, and additives as well.
6. Eat more healthy fats
When you eat healthy fats, you can be boosting your body’s immune response to illness as it decreases inflammation. Healthy fats are those found in olive oil, salmon, and chia seeds as they contain high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, which is highly anti-inflammatory.
The anti-inflammatory properties found in healthy fats will help the body to fight off harmful virus and bacteria. Chronic inflammation in the body can suppress the immune system.
7. Manage stress levels
We all know that stress can promote inflammation in the body as well as imbalances in the function of the immune cells. Relieving stress is the key to a healthy immune system function properly. Activities such as yoga, exercise, meditation, and sports can all help keep stress levels checked.
They are known for the health benefits and for their ability to boost the immune system to prevent or minimise the effects of illness. They can also help you to recover quicker than usual when you get sick.
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