Since winter has officially started, I thought it would be a good idea to go over some of the natural ways to boost your immunity this season. No one wants to get sick and as busy as we all are, getting sick is not something we have time for. It is never too late to start incorporating some of these practices to enhance your immune system and stay healthy all year long. If you are on the search for simple, natural ways to boost your immunity and be well, do not miss out on these nine helpful tips!
Did you know that sleeping is one of best and most enjoyable ways to boost your immunity? Getting sufficient rest is very important for staying healthy and looking your best. The University of Chicago conducted a study on a group of students who only slept for four hours a night for six nights. They were later administered a flu shot and the researchers found that their immune system only produced about half of the normal number of antibodies as well rested individuals.
2. Drink Chamomile Tea
If you are not already a tea drinker, you might want to start. According to research done by Imperial College in London, those who drank five cups of chamomile tea daily for two weeks had increased levels of polyphenols, which have been associated with decreased antibacterial activity. The impressive part is that their polyphenol levels stayed elevated for two weeks after the study concluded.
3. Crunch on Cruciferous Vegetables
Another effective way to boost immunity is through the foods you eat. Eating a well-rounded diet of fresh fruits and vegetables is a great, not to mention delicious way to get your essential vitamins and nutrients. The next time you go grocery shopping, be sure to check out the cruciferous veggies like broccoli, cabbage, kale, bok choy and lettuce. All of these vegetables help support your liver, decrease oxidative stress and reduce the risk of certain diseases.
4. Nosh on Oats
Making oatmeal your breakfast of choice is another delicious way to stay healthy. As you probably already know, there are numerous health benefits to eating oatmeal. For starters, it is rich in antioxidants, stabilizes blood sugar and helps reduce cholesterol, all in addition to boosting immunity. Oatmeal contains a type of fiber called beta-gluten fiber, which protects the heart and helps the immune system search for and repair areas in the body that are fighting a bacterial infection.
5. Stress Less
Stressing less is so much easier said than done, but it is something that must be done. High levels of stress have been linked to certain medical conditions and WebMD mentions that constantly being stressed makes one more susceptible to a variety of illnesses. Carve out some time each day to decompress and breathe. You might feel like you do not have time for it, but your body needs it!
6. Spend Time with Friends
Hanging out with your girlfriends or spending time with your family members is much more important for your health than we might think. According to WebMD, staying connected to our loved ones is linked to higher immunity than compared to those who feel lonely. This and every season, make time to cherish your friends and family.
7. Sweat It out
Working out regularly is a major part of a healthy lifestyle, so it should come as no surprise that it is also boosts immunity. WebMD suggests 30 minutes of physical activity a day to help fight infection. If you do not like the gym, go for a run or walk or get your friends together and play a sport. You can always enlist the help of your pet and take it out for a walk to get you moving, also.
8. Shun Sugar
I have an enormous sweet tooth and although I am well aware of the drawbacks of consuming too many sugary foods, I still cannot help myself! Cutting back on sugar is not only good for my waistline, but having too much sugar also curbs the immune system cells that attack bacteria, as stated by WebMD. Consuming too much sugar is not only responsible for depressing the immune system but also affects behavior, learning and attention.
9. Warm up with Ginger
Ginger is another food that is chock full of health benefits, with one of them helping us boost immunity. Adding ginger to your meals or drinks is not only tasty, but it helps with blood circulation, improves the absorption of nutrients, fights inflammation, combats respiratory problems and fights off the cold and flu. Cut off about an inch of ginger or more and add it to your green juice, hot tea or sautéed veggies for a yummy way to stay healthy!
Boosting immunity can be done in a variety of ways, so instead of relying on expensive supplements that promise to rev up your immune system, take some steps to live a healthier lifestyle. Eat a colorful diet, get enough sleep, exercise and take good care of yourself. It might seem like a huge undertaking to do all of those things, but taking baby steps in the right direction is just as helpful. How do you like to stay healthy?