5 Brilliant Ways To Boost Your Immunity
During the devastating COVID-19 crisis, you undoubtedly heard the word immunity thrown about by many medical experts, politicians, family members, and peers.
Irrespective of COVID or not, our minds and bodies are always striving to be immune from a range of threats.
Whether that’s being stress-free, pain-free, free from diseases, viruses and everything else.
The truth is, though, we can’t be fully immune, and the 9.3 million cases and 142,0000 deaths in the UK due to COVID-19 demonstrate this.
Luckily for you, today in this article, we’re going to give five top tips on how to do that! But before you explore this, the topic of immunity must be covered further.
What is immunity?
Immunity is the main goal your body’s immune system constantly works to achieve. The immune system is vital for us to live a healthy life. Its primary purpose is to defend against foreign bacteria, viruses and parasites.
Your immune system is made up of organs, tissues, cells and proteins. When a foreign substance (antibody) enters your body, your immune system responds by using killer cells from your immune system to kill the threat, i.e. the bacteria, virus and parasites.
Research shows that as you get older, your immune systems become stronger due to the exposure you have to the world around you. However, if you smoke, have poor nutrition or drink heavily, you could be at risk of compromising your immune system.
5 simple ways you can better your immunity
You don’t have to make drastic decisions or actions to change your immunity; the changes you can make which have a lasting impact are very simple to do. Try doing the following:
Consume a diet high in fruit and vegetables
One effective way to reduce the risk of your body having colds, flu, and infections is by incorporating more fruit and vegetables into your diet. Studies have shown that fruit and vegetables can increase the amount of Vitamin C, A, minerals, electrolytes, phytochemicals and antioxidants in your body. All of which are essential to fighting off potential threats your body might encounter.
Try adding to your diet the following:
- Beta-Carotene: You can find this antioxidant in sweet potatoes, green leafy vegetables and carrots. It helps your body fight inflammation and increases the amount of disease-fighting cells your body holds when consumed.
- Zinc: This mineral can easily be incorporated into your diet if you consume nuts, pumpkin seeds, beans, lentils and sesame seeds. The main purpose of this mineral is to help boost your white blood cells, which is the primary form of defence against pathogens.
- Vitamin D: Vitamin D can be found in fortified cereals and plant-based milk. If you’re not a fan of these, you can also consume Vitamin D through supplements. Vitamin D helps reduce the likelihood of viral infections, respiratory tract infections and proinflammatory compounds. Higher quantities of Vitamin in D also is known to reduce your risk of other diseases like hepatitis, tuberculosis and cardiovascular disease.
- Vitamin C and E: You can find these vitamins in red peppers, oranges, strawberries, broccoli, mangos, lemons, nuts and seeds. These vitamins help promote your body’s natural response and destroy free radicals.
By having a consistently good quality of sleep, your body can fight off infections at a quicker rate. On the contrary, if you don’t have a high quality, you’re more than likely to suppress your immune function making it more prone to chronic conditions like heart disease, Alzheimer’s and obesity.
Due to the busy lifestyle you might lead, it can be difficult to get all the essential nutrients, vitamins and minerals from your diet. To save you time, preparation and worry, you can consume supplements that support your immune function. Some of the best supplements you can take are:
- Elderberry: This type of supplement comes in capsule form and contains Vitamin C and Zinc. Elderberry is completely natural and works as a cough suppressant, immune booster and has a rich resource of antioxidants. Research from a double-blind placebo study also supports this, showing people recover quicker from colds using elderberry than when not. This supplement is not new either; it’s been historically used through Europe and North America to help treat sore throats and lung infections. It’s particularly beneficial to take during the cold and flu season.
- Reishi: Reishi is a form of fungi that is a powerful antioxidant that supports your immune function and lowers anxiety. It’s commonly found in trees in Japan, Korea and China.
- Magnesium Glycinate: If you’re not familiar with magnesium, it’s an essential nutrient that’s required for over 300 processes in the body. Our bodies use it to make new DNA, build new blood cells and generate new energy. However, not all magnesium we consume goes into our bloodstream. Glycinate allows it to absorb more easily into your bloodstream.
Undergo moderate exercise
You don’t have to be a hardcore gym-goer or ultramarathon runner to increase your immunity. If you engage in moderate exercise through brisk walking, running, cycling and swimming of around 150 minutes a week, you can boost your immune system. In particular, it can increase blood flow, strengthen antibodies limiting infection and reduce stress hormones. Most importantly, it can stop you from getting obese, which can trigger chronic conditions.
According to Harvard Health, you should be drinking around 4-6 cups of water a day to keep hydrated. Water is so essential to your body; if you don’t drink enough, it can make you more at risk of headaches, digestion difficulties, kidney function, heart function, mood issues, and problems with your physical performance and focus. If any of these are low, your body can be more susceptible to certain illnesses.
Overall, we’re dependent on our immune systems to function at our best physically, mentally and socially. If you don’t have a strong immune system, you have a higher risk of contracting viruses, diseases, infections and dangerous bacteria. To reduce your chances of this happening, you can take supplements, eat more fruit and vegetables, get a good night’s sleep, keeping hydrated and active.