How To Boost Your Immunity?
The cold and flu season is here. Do you want to fight the illness that’s spreading around? Your immune system is what keeps you healthy year after year. Therefore, boosting your immune system is a great way to start with. Our immune systems are composed of a complicated network of tissues, cells and organs designed to keep us healthy and to fight infections and diseases. As we get older, our immune system start to change, and some of the cells begin to lose their ability to communicate with each other and allow more possibly harmful germs in.
Practice healthy living to give your immune system extra boost by following these steps:
•Eat a healthy diet: Fill your diet with fruits and vegetables, which are rich in vitamins, zinc and beta-carotene. Make sure you are eating a low-fat diet with whole grains and lean proteins. Adding Garlic, kale and berries can help too!
•Get regular exercise: 30 minutes of regular exercise each day can help you keep the doctor away! Staying active helps your immune system fights the infections.
Exercise allows white blood cells and antibodies to move through the body faster, so they can detect illnesses early.
•Get adequate sleep: For adults, it’s suggested to get between 7 and 9 hours of sleep each night. Sleep is one way to allow our bodies to rebuild and recover our strength and energy levels.
•Drink plenty of water: It’s often common not to feel thirsty, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need to stay hydrated. You need at least 8 glasses of water per day to keep your mucous membranes wet; your daily tea, coffee or soup counts as water!
•Avoid unwanted stress: Feeling stressed out can have an effect on your health and make you more vulnerable to infection and illness. Learn how to come through stress, whether by exercise, meditation or social connections.
•Get rid of smoking: Not only does smoking cause serious health conditions like cancer, but it also decreases your body’s immune response, making you more sensitive to infections. Tobacco products damage nearly every system of the body, and the immune system is no different.
•Limit excessive alcohol consumption: Excess alcohol intake can harm the body’s immune system in two ways. First, it produces a whole nutritional deficiency process, depriving the body of valuable immune boosting nutrients like vitamins and minerals. Second, alcohol, like sugar, consumed in excess can cut down the ability of white cells to kill germs.
•Maintain a healthy weight: Excess body fat, can damage the immune system, creating immune cells that can harm, rather than protect, our bodies.
•Get vaccinated: It’s advisable that older adults get a yearly flu shot to help reduce the risk of sickness.
Dietitian Christelle Bedrossian