With the cold months looming ahead, you may want some ways to strengthen your immune system. There are many reasons to love winter. Many of our favorite holidays are in winter. It snows, and when it snows you get snow days off from school and work in some cases. But one thing many of us don’t like is that the colder temps and weather bring on flu and cold symptoms. Prepare yourself this year with ways to strengthen your immune system.
1. Eat Well
One of the easiest ways to strengthen your immune system is with good foods. Choose natural foods that are packed with nutrients and vitamins. You want whole foods that will nourish your body and help build your immune system. Processed foods and drinks do nothing for you and too much of them can actually weaken your immune system. Soups are good for boosting your immune system. They are packed with veggies and whole foods, plus they are warm and delicious. Do you have a favorite soup recipe that would be good for boosting the immune system?
2. Amp up Vitamin C
It’s not just an old wives' tale that vitamin C is good for fighting a cold, it’s the truth. Fresh fruits and veggies are better for getting your vitamin C than juices. Load up on oranges, kiwi, green veggies, and berries. Immune boosting smoothie, anyone?
3. Water! Water! Water!
Keeping hydrated is key to a healthy immune system. Water plays a vital role in carrying the white blood cells through the body. Be sure to drink plenty of water each day and if you feel like you might be getting sick, up your water intake by a couple more glasses over the next couple of days.
I love that sleep is such an important factor to living well and boosting our immune systems because sleep is one of my favorite things. If you are feeling run down and fatigued, you may be susceptible to more illness. Your body uses sleep to rejuvenate each night. Do yourself a favor and aim for 7 to 8 hours of sleep each night.
Typically we think of bacteria as bad, but some bacteria is very good for you. I’m talking about probiotics. They are good bacteria that can be found in many fermented foods like sauerkraut, yogurt, and supplements. This year try to eat more foods with probiotics and look into taking a supplement as well.
On top of all the other amazing health benefits, staying active also increases your immune system. Make the time to work out for at least 30 minutes five days a week to keep your immune system in proper working order.
7. Vitamin D
I know it is cold and in some areas the sunlight may be scarce, but you still need to seek the sun. Spending as little as thirty minutes a couple of times a week is ideal. If you can’t get out in the sun, be sure to add it to your diet or as a supplement.
There are many things we can do to improve our immune systems and hopefully stay free from colds and the flu this winter. Give some of these a try and share your own secrets to boosting your immune system. What works for you?