When it comes to disease, the coronavirus has stolen the spotlight for nearly two years.
It’s not the only virus floating in the air, though. Temperatures are dropping, so cold and flu season is just around the corner. That means your immune system needs to be a suit of armor.
Vaccines can go a long way in boosting your immunity. Shots aren’t the only way to protect yourself, however.
There are lots of daily habits and practices you can adopt to help strengthen your immune system. Consider these eight behaviors that can give your immunity a boost.
1. Keep It Clean.
You’ve heard the mantra over and over in recent months. Wash your hands! Don’t touch your face!
Those are great strategies to keep the bad bugs out of your body.
You can also ward off infection by choosing silk clothing and bedsheets.
Silk is a naturally antimicrobial and hypoallergenic fabric that resists dirt, mold, and mildew. That makes silk pillowcases and sheets a great disease fighting option since they’re so close to your face.
The best part about silk is that it wards off dust mites. If you’re wrapped in this fabric, they can’t irritate your skin. You also won’t inhale their skeletons or fecal matter, yikes.
2. Get Better Zzzs.
Between work, family, and maybe school, it’s hard to find time to sleep.
Getting enough shut eye, though, is an important factor in maintaining a healthy immune system. The less you sleep, the more compromised your protective shield will be.
It turns out, grabbing too few winks increases your likelihood of getting a cold. When you sleep, your body releases cytokines, proteins that fight disease.
The less you sleep, the fewer illness busters you’ll make. Sleeping less also makes it harder for you to get over a cold or virus. Do your immune system a favor and shoot for at least seven hours of snooze time each night.
3. Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate.
You’ve probably heard you need roughly 64 ounces of water every day. Fortunately, that doesn’t mean just plain, flavorless water.
Coffee, tea, broth, and fruits are also great options for keeping you hydrated.
They strengthen your immunity by flushing toxins out of your system.
Most women need almost 12 cups of fluid daily, and men need nearly 16.
You should get approximately 20% of your fluid intake from food and the rest from your drinks.
Remember, the older you get, the more important staying hydrated is to maintaining your health.
4. Burn Some Calories.
Pumping iron and getting your cardio in are fantastic activities for burning calories and building muscle.
It turns out exercise goes a long way toward building a better immune system, too.
Alongside increasing your blood flow, working out ramps up the circulation of your immune cells.
If you exercise regularly, at least 30 minutes three to five times a week, your body will have better defense mechanisms.
Your white blood cells respond faster to protect your body from infection. They also show up in greater numbers to attack and clear your body of disease invaders.
5. Clean Up Your Diet.
We’re not talking here about a fad diet that detoxes or cleanses your body of one specific type of food.
This is more of a lifestyle change. It means making better food choices over the long term.
To create an immunity boosting diet, fill your plate with colorful foods like purple cabbage, leafy kale, and carrots.
These foods contain vital antioxidants, including vitamins A, B6, C, and E, which are critical to improving your immunity.
Consider probiotic foods like yogurt and kimchi as well. They can reduce inflammation and shorten how long a cold lasts.
6. Cut the Cocktails and Ciggies.
Drinking less alcohol and kicking the smoking habit will produce a lot of health benefits. A stronger immune system is definitely one of them.
Smoking damages your lung tissue, increasing your risk of bronchitis and pneumonia. Some ingredients, like tar, also actively harm your immune system.
The more you puff, the more disease fighting antibodies you kill. You also reduce the overall number your body produces.
Drinking too much alcohol likewise undermines your immune system, making it harder for you to fight off illness. Wine, beer, or liquor also alters your gut biome, prompting inflammation.
7. Soak Up Some Sun.
Often called the “sun vitamin,” vitamin D plays a big part in protecting your immune system.
When you don’t get enough of it, you’re less able to resist disease or infection.
You’re also more susceptible to immune related disorders.
Like some foods, vitamin D has anti inflammatory properties, and it improves how well your immune cells work.
In fact, getting enough vitamin D can keep you breathing easy with strong lung function.
That means you’ll have an easier time fighting respiratory illness.
8. Relax and Unwind.
If you’re alive, you get stressed. Most stressors are temporary, and some of these episodes can even be beneficial.
The problems start, however, when your stress becomes chronic. Over time, your immune system takes a hit.
Stress triggers your body to release the hormone cortisol. Too much cortisol in your blood increases inflammation, which, over time, chips away at your immunity armor.
Being stressed out also reduces the number of infection fighting white blood cells your body produces. With fewer of these cells, you’re vulnerable to viruses.
Now more than ever, it’s important to keep your immune system as strong as possible. Fortunately, you can be proactive in maintaining a strong natural protective shield against disease.
What You Should Remember?
Taking care of your health should be your number 1 priority in your life.
You must learn how to strengthen your immune system and what kind of habits to install in your life to be healthy.
But most importantly, what you should remove from your lifestyle.
Giving these tips a shot can help you fight off sickness or at least keep any illnesses short lived.