The winter season may become a hotbed of cold and flu viruses since temperatures drop down and the days become shorter. Unfortunately, there is no magic way to instantly improve our immune systems; all we can do is make sure it has all that needs to work effectively. This year, particularly, with the rise of colds, flu, and Covid-19 numbers still high, it’s the best time to strengthen the immune system to help prevent the transmission of germs and protect ourselves and others.
It’s fair to be concerned if your immune system is lower than usual, but many factors can assist our bodies in fighting infection. Following are some basic preventative actions you can take to enhance your immune system, ward off illness, and stay healthy throughout the year, even during the coldest months.
The ideal strategy is to eat a well-balanced, nutrient-dense diet rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. On your plate, try to have a variety of colours. The more different colours you eat, the more phytochemicals you get, which are important for reducing inflammation in the body.
The importance of regular physical activity in improving your immune system cannot be overstated. So, as long as you feel fit enough, try and keep up an exercise routine at home. If you don’t have access to a gym, start with a daily walk, run, or cycle, even if it’s only for 20 minutes. It’s also a terrific way to get some vitamin D and fresh air.
Prioritise your sleep
A good night’s sleep can help in the fight against illnesses. Lack of sleep can trigger our immune systems to go into overdrive just as stress affects our bodies. Aim to get to bed by 10 p.m., when the body produces human growth hormone (HGH) as it activates our repair mode, assisting in the repair of our immunological cells. Hence, avoid any light that disrupts the creation of your sleep hormone, melatonin, such as that from phones.
Reduce your stress
Stress limits the number of lymphocytes, which are white blood cells that assist the body fight infection. For instance, you are more prone to viruses, such as the common cold and cold sores, if your lymphocyte count is low.
It’s not always simple to reduce stress, but don’t overlook activities that help you relax, such as wandering in nature, deep breathing, listening to music, practising yoga, and meditating. Whatever it is that you find the most soothing. Maintaining contact with family and friends is another great approach to reduce stress.
Ensure good hygiene
Given the current environment, mask usage prevents a lot of unnecessary germs. When in an exceedingly public place or on public transportation, sanitise and wash your hands thoroughly before eating and always after using the restroom. It is also important to dry your hands after washing them thoroughly with soap, as damp hands can assist bacteria spread.