The holiday season is fast approaching! This time of year can be full of fun and stress. Do you tend to get sick during this time of year? If so, then keep reading, because today I want to share some tips with you on ways to increase your immunity.
When our immune system is compromised our body’s ability to ward off infections and other ailments becomes a challenge, especially during the holidays.
Ways You Can Protect Your Immune System
Eat lots of fruits, vegetables and nuts
Maintain a healthy diet among all the tempting holiday parties and dinners. Set out to adopt a diet that is rich in beta carotene, zinc and vitamins C and E found in fruits, vegetables and nuts aids in replenishing white blood cells, hence strengthening the immune system.
- Cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, chard and kale enhances the liver’s immune function by boosting its ability to clean out toxins.
- Brightly colored fruits and vegetables like carrots, citrus fruits, apples, berries and onions are rich in antioxidants that eliminate free radicals and improve the immune system.
- It is also helpful to make a dietary habit of incorporating certain foods that are known to boost the immune system. Examples of such foods are: raw garlic (a great antibacterial and antiviral compound), ginger (cleanses the lymphatic system, lungs and sinuses), avocado (rich in amino acids and a good source of antioxidants) and mushrooms (contains beta glucan, a complex carbohydrate that increases immunity against infections, allergies and cancers).
- Avoid refined sugars and complex carbohydrates found in sodas and sweets because they suppress the ability of white blood cells to ward off bacterial attacks.
- Drink plenty of water water.
Catch a good dose of Zzzs
When you sleep, your body repairs itself and restores its ability to function properly. When we are sleep deprived, our body is unable to function optimally. Not having enough restorative sleep also compromises the ability of cells to regenerate, decreases the body’s immune function and raises the level of inflammatory chemicals in the body, which in turn causes us to become ill.
In order to maintain a healthy immune level, always try to get a regular dose of uninterrupted sleep of seven to nine hours a night. Avoid chronic sleep deprivation at all costs as this will assuredly compromise the body’s ability to heal from daily stresses and function properly.
Keep a daily exercise routine
We might have heard it all too often: The human body was not created to endure long hours of inactivity. Being stuck behind a desk for hours, lounging on a couch in front of the TV, or just plain avoiding the need to exercise reduces the efficiency of the systems of our body, including the immune system. Moving or exercising not only increases oxygenation at the cellular level; it also stimulates the body’s lymphatic system (which flushes out toxins) and promotes the reproduction of leukocytes (cells that fight infection).
Maintaining an exercise regimen to keep your immune system going does not even require you to be a hard-core exercise buff. A daily dose of 30 minutes of moderate movement through walking around the block, running after your child or taking the stairs instead of riding an elevator can do wonders to support your immune system.
It doesn’t take a genius to understand that stress can increase the likelihood of coming down with a cold or flu during the holidays. We are exposed to stress at work, at home, even in our social interactions.
Stress is a part of life and we need to manage it properly, just like any other challenges we encounter. Keep in mind that stress is a condition that can be overcome by learning a few tricks to keep it at bay. Learn to meditate, slow down and laugh every once in a while.
How are planning to proactively support your immune system during the holiday? Not sure, then try implementing some of the strategies I shared with you here. Take care and stay well.