What defines a healthy body? Weight? Mental state? Face glow? Strength? When you are looking at these factors individually, it’s none of the above. A healthy body is more holistic. It’s the overall well being of your body and mind. And your immune system can be a great contributor towards achieving this goal.
The immune system is your very own defense mechanism. It fights off all the infections, germs, viruses and disease-causing bacteria and works to bring your body back to a healthy state. A slight change in its functioning and you end up being sick. While you can always get yourself checked using the general medical service online in California, it’s always best to take up some measures that boost your immune responses and prevent you from getting sick in the first place. Here are a few tips that you can adopt to strengthen your immune system.
Make a Routine
A healthy routine can greatly benefit your immune system. Creating a routine is important because that’s how you’ll stick to changes in your lifestyle that will boost your immunity. You can’t expect a person who is used to sleeping all day to suddenly wake up and do a HIIT workout. A set of healthy habits has to be created for the person to know what to do.
In addition to telling you what needs to be done, a routine also keeps you right on time. People usually skip meals, don’t drink enough water or stay on the phone for hours. If you follow a routine, you’ll have the right time for everything and not compromise on the health of your immune system.
Improve Your Sleep Cycle
Sleep is very important for your body. It is a restorative function that focuses on recovering and healing your body and bringing it back to the normal state. So sleep is necessary. But this does not mean that sleeping at four in the morning and waking up at nine is a great option. At least you got the sleep, right? Wrong.
Your good night rest should be at the right time, of good quality, peaceful and of a minimum duration of 6 to 7 hours. If you don’t relate to any of these factors then you are seriously compromising your immunity.
It is only while you sleep that the T-cells have the ability to more actively attack any foreign component in the body. So while the immune system protects you while you sleep, it also makes the recovery from a disease faster. This is why you are advised to rest when suffering from cold or fever. Also, sleep is a good way to release your mind of any stress and tension which also improves your immune response. So keep your phone aside and close your eyes for a good night’s rest.
Make a Healthy Diet Your Priority
Your food choices will decide the health of your immune system and ultimately your overall health. So you must make better choices and fill your plate with nutritious food options.
For example, citrus fruits are very helpful in building immunity. Vitamin C helps in building white blood cells that fight all diseases and infections. Another important nutrient is carbohydrates. It is what fuels the immune system and gives it the energy to function at its best ability. Antioxidants are also important for proper body functions. They eliminate any free radicals from your body and flush out the toxins which allow the immune system to work more effectively and in a focused manner.
Your gut health is also connected to the immune system. You must maintain a healthy microbiome in your gut. That’s because they play a major role in determining the fast response of your immune system. To maintain a healthy gut, include probiotics in your diet. These are mostly present in fermented food like pickles, kimchi, kombucha, kefir etc. A high fiber diet also keeps your gut healthy by feeding the gut bacteria. While you are making the additions, consider eliminating some foods like artificial sweeteners, processed food, soda and refined carbohydrates.
Do minimum Physical Exercise
An adult should get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week. Not only does it help maintain healthy body weight but also keeps your immune system vigilant to any diseases. Exercise helps release any toxins and bacteria from the body which reduces the work for the immune system. Moderate to high-intensity workouts allows the white blood cells to circulate in the body more efficiently and detect any threat better. Physical activity also reduces stress hormone that inhibits the functioning of the immune system and increases serotonin and endorphin.
So put on your sports shoes and ride a bicycle, workout, run or even try jump rope.
Maintain Basic Hygiene
If you want your immune system to function at its best capacity then try to reduce its burden. How? By maintaining basic hygiene. For starters, wash your hands frequently. Your fingertips are one of the dirtiest parts of your body. And they are also the most around your eyes, mouth, nose and the entire face. It’s like giving a free pass to all the germs to enter your body. So wash your hands instead or use sanitizers.
Also, maintain a distance from people who are showing clinical symptoms of a sickness. It’s very easy to contract a disease so the farther you are from a sick person, the better.
Learn to Manage Your Stress
Stress is never associated with a healthy body. It hinders the proper functioning of the body which includes the immune system. High levels of stress mean that your body has high levels of cortisol. While this hormone is necessary for certain body functions, it doesn’t really help your immunity. Cortisol is an immunosuppressant which means it suppresses the immune functions. So pathogens will have an easier time to negatively impact your body. So if you wish to have a healthy immune system, learn to control your stress.
Exercise, eat healthily and connect with the people you love. Practice deep breathing and stretching activities like yoga and medication. Or try to calm down by distracting yourself with activities like gardening, swimming, painting etc.
Avoid Habits That Negatively Impact Your Immune System
I’ve talked enough about the habits that you need to adopt to keep your immune system healthy. But your immunity is compromised because of certain habits too. So they need to be out of your lifestyle. Here are a few.
Excessive drinking of alcohol gives a hard blow to your immune system. It affects the microbiome in your gut and prevents the good bacteria from functioning properly. Alcohol also negatively affects the lining of the gut and makes it easier for the pathogens to enter your bloodstream. So if you are fond of drinking alcohol, try to limit it to no more than 2 drinks.
You may have heard that smoking is injurious to health. The smoke you inhale is a storehouse of harmful chemicals. And you voluntarily introduce them into your body. Your respiratory system is the one that’s taking all the risk. It only makes it hard for the immune system to work. Even if you have a common sickness like a cold, your recovery period increases because of smoking.
Are you determined to improve your overall well being? So make a routine with these tips to strengthen your immune system and give your body the strength to fight.