Giving our immune system extra support has been essential this year. As we head into our cold & flu season, it’s more important than ever to protect our health. There are many ways to support our body’s natural ability to ward off illness; between nutrition, supplements and lifestyle habits. Lets explore some ways we can help our immune systems function more optimally.
8 Ways to Support Your Immune System:
- Getting enough restful sleep. Our bodies do the most recovery when we are sleeping; but many adults don’t get the recommended 7-9 hours of sleep. Taking the necessary steps to improve your sleep hygiene can greatly benefit your over all health.
- Eating a diet rich in antioxidants and omega fatty acids. Eating foods rich in vitamin A, C, and E and omega fatty acids helps provide a boost of antioxidants. Try incorporating more foods like citrus, apples, carrots, leafy greens, fish, nuts/seeds and berries.
- Slowing down. Our bodies have an innate desire to slow down through the colder months. Choose gentle forms of movement to preserve your energy.
- Taking a Vitamin D3 supplement. Vitamin D3 is essential to many bodily functions, including immune health. Sunlight is the best form of vitamin D. Therefore, during the colder months, many adults suffer a D deficiency.
- Supplementing with Zinc. Zinc is an antioxidant mineral found in foods like pumpkin seeds and fish. Supplementing with Zinc can be an easy way to boost your zinc levels.
- Enjoying teas with immune supporting herbal blends. Yarrow, chamomile, echinacea, eucalyptus, elderberry and ginger are all great herbs for supporting your immune system.
- Taking an elderberry supplement (or making your own). Elderberries are extremely rich in antioxidants and have been proven to be effective in preventing or decreasing the intensity of the flu virus.
- Positive Stress Management. Research has shown a connection between high cortisol levels (our stress hormone) and lower vitamin D levels. Performing positive stress management techniques like meditation or breathwork can help lower cortisol levels.
It’s important to remember that many things are out of our control, but we do have the power to take action towards supporting our health.