Our immune system is something that can help us to fight off a variety of illnesses and infections. With the coming summer months, and the fact that we are in the middle of a pandemic, now is a good time to work to increase immunity as much as possible.
So, what can we do to increase our immune systems?
First of all, realize that there are many people and companies out there who will try to sell you a dietary supplement or some kind of random assortment of pills, shakes, diets, etc, claiming that they will boost your immune system. This does not mean, however, that there are not quality supplements and vitamins available. There are many excellent sources, just make sure to do your research before taking any nutritional supplement.
Now, let’s look at some of the science-backed ways that we implement can keep ourselves from getting sick.
What Really Works?
A diet full of fruits and vegetables is obviously healthy. Most Americans do not get enough fiber in their daily diet, so eating a fair amount of beans, broccoli, carrots, etc, can help to boost how well the body functions. Studies have shown that consuming more vegetables can reduce the chances of getting infections like the common cold.
When our digestive system is in order, the rest of the body will function better. Adding a wide variety of foods prevents us from being nutrient deficient, which can cause the body to be weaker overall.
In fact, a nutritionist is a perfect fit in the medically integrated practice. Combining functional medicine with proper nutrition and a consistent regimen of exercise is the ideal way to achieve and sustain peak health.
Most health organizations suggest exercising for at least 30 minutes to an hour each day. This may include walking, jogging, dancing, weightlifting, etc.
Sadly, most Americans do not follow this advice.
Simply getting up and moving around can help in a variety of ways. The increased activity will build stronger muscles, help you feel less fatigued, increase concentration and alertness during the day, and can even help with depression.
Get Plenty of Sleep
Americans, on average, don’t get a proper amount of sleep. Sleep is extremely important because it is when the body repairs itself and re-energizes for the next day.
A good night’s sleep helps us stay alert and functioning at a high level, while not getting enough sleep on a regular basis can affect the body in a myriad of negative ways.
Studies have shown that getting consistent, restful sleep can reduce the risk of getting sick. This is because sleep helps with many bodily processes, and without it, the body begins to deteriorate. Experts suggest getting seven or more hours of sleep every night to stay healthy.
Stress is something that we all feel from time to time, but nobody should be feeling it continuously. Stress is known to contribute to many illnesses like heart disease and obesity - it can even increase the risk of infection.
When subjected to an abundance of stress, the immune system starts to get tired of always being on the defensive and it weakens. Find time to meditate or take a long walk, do things that make you happy, and talk with friends and family regularly – this will help to reduce stress levels.
There’s no doubt that we are living in troubling times, but by approaching the body as a whole and using these tips, your immune system will be healthier and function better.
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