Ever wondered how quickly your body responds to a viral or bacterial infection? This is because you have a defense system inside your body called the immune system. Your immune system fights against diseases and foreign bodies to keep you healthy and safe.
During the recent pandemic, people with weak or compromised immunity displayed severe symptoms. For this reason, everyone needs to keep their immune system strong, aside from taking safety precautions.
While certain medications and treatments can boost immunity in immunocompromised patients, some simple ways to naturally boost your immune system include lifestyle changes, targeted diet plans, exercise, and more.
Here Are The Eight Best Steps Help You To Boost The Immune System
Read on to find out how you can strengthen your body’s natural defense system and prepare it for countering all types of organisms that may cause diseases.
1. Quit Alcohol and Drug Abuse
Excessive alcohol consumption and drug abuse both wreak havoc on your immune system. The consistent intake of drugs and excessive alcohol slows down the brain’s function, potentially destroys brain cells, and causes physical and mental disorders.
Stress, anxiety, and depression are common side effects of addiction or drug abuse, particularly when the high feeling of a drug begins to fade. As the frequency of drugs increases, it starts to have a devastating effect on a person’s immunity.
Fortunately, therapeutic interventions, rehabilitation programs, and medications can help prevent drug abuse. Numerous clinics and rehabilitation centers focus on drug addiction recovery through medication-assisted treatment, therapy-based treatment, and detoxification.
Some of the most renowned addiction and mental health treatment centers, like Delphi Group, operate in several states across the United States, offering individualized treatment in intimate settings for all levels of addiction.
A person’s immune system tends to improve every day when they stop abusing alcohol or drugs. It takes a week or two for people with alcohol abuse to get their immunity back. However, the longer you drink, the longer you may have to wait. Sobriety and time are key to a complete recovery.
2. Improve Gut Health
Gut health is closely linked with the immune system. Many healthcare providers believe that your gut contains up to 70-80% of your immune system. To keep your digestive system happy and healthy, you must consume enough probiotics and prebiotics.
Yogurt, natural yeast, complex carbs, fruits, whole grains, and healthy fats are foods that promote good bacteria and help reduce inflammation in any part of the digestive system.
The liver is also linked to gut health because it is in charge of filtering the blood for toxins, eliminating bad cholesterol, breaking down fats, and producing bile, which breaks down food so the body can absorb nutrients.
3. Don’t Skimp on Vital Nutrients
A healthy diet sits at the root of a healthy immune system. It serves as a fuel that keeps the immune system running perfectly. An absence of a healthy and balanced diet will have a direct impact on your immunity.
It is important to charge your body with essential nutrients like Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Zinc, and Magnesium which are necessary to boost immunity. Foods like fresh vegetables, citrus fruits, legumes, lean proteins, healthy fats, and whole grains contain all these essential nutrients and antioxidants that help detoxify your body.
Green vegetables, white meat, including chicken and fish, and bananas are rich sources of Vitamin B6. Vitamin C is abundant in citrus fruits, strawberries, green tea, tomatoes, spinach, and broccoli. Vitamin E is a vital nutrient for boosting the immune system, naturally found in nuts, sunflower oil, and green vegetables.
Besides a healthy diet, taking multivitamins, including all these essential nutrients, is important. People with compromised immunity often subscribe to an extra dose of Vitamin D through injections or capsules.
Vitamin D is also called sunshine vitamin as sunlight itself is a good source of it. However, don’t expose yourself to sunlight while the UV index is high. The best time to get enough sunlight is early morning or before sunset.
4. Exercise Daily
Regular physical activity not only keeps your body healthy but also prevents it from long-term or life-threatening diseases like stroke, heart attack, hypertension, diabetes, and some pulmonary diseases.
During physical activity, the body increases metabolism, improves oxygen intake, regulates blood flow, and boosts cardiovascular health. It also helps in boosting your immune system, reduce inflammation, and lose excess weight.
However, you need to know how much exercise is good for your body. While moderate exercise can boost an immune system, intense exercise can suppress it.
Brisk walking, cycling, swimming, jogging, and hiking are some of the most effective exercises to boost immunity. Start by exercising at least 15 minutes and increase it by 5 or 10 minutes each day. Never try to jump to long sessions of moderate exercise at once as it can suppress your immune system.
5. Get Enough Sleep
Sleep and immunity are inextricably linked. Insufficient or poor-quality sleep is closely linked with an increased probability of catching infections and falling ill.
While you’re asleep, your body is doing many important things. Apart from restoring your energy, during sleep, your immune system is busy building white cells to fight infections and diseases more effectively. This is why your body naturally produces hormones that make you feel drowsy during illness.
It’s important to understand how much sleep you need each night to keep your immune system healthy and what to do if you’re having trouble sleeping. An adult requires 6-7 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night. Develop a bedtime routine and stay consistent with your sleep-wake cycle to help your body boost immunity and keep your hormones balanced.
6. Keep Yourself Hydrated
We need water to flow and circulate our blood and lymph, which contain immune cells. This is why you need to keep your body hydrated at all times. Try to drink clean plain water instead of beverages, and drink at least 8-10 glasses of water every day. If you exercise regularly, your daily water intake depends on the nature and severity of the physical activity.
Try setting reminders throughout the day or drinking a glass before each meal if you are having trouble drinking enough water.
7. Never Skip Immunizations
By imitating an infection, vaccines protect us against certain diseases. Vaccines not only prevent us from dangerous diseases, but they also help boost our immune systems. Without vaccinations, many people would be severely ill or die from diseases like COVID-19, measles, Zika, hepatitis, and mumps.
Vaccines are the best defense we have against dangerous illnesses. Maintain your vaccination schedule, especially your COVID-19 vaccine or booster and your annual flu shot.
8. Limit Sugar Intake
Added sugars and refined carbohydrates directly contribute to obesity, weight gain, diabetes, and other health conditions. Obesity also compromises your immune system and increases your risk of getting sick.
Limiting your sugar intake not only helps you lose weight but also regulates your hormones and boosts immunity. It drastically decreases your risk of chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
Drug abuse, obesity, a lack of physical activity, an unhealthy lifestyle, and a lack of sleep are all common causes of a weakened immune system.
You can strengthen your immune system, recover from long-term illness, and live a healthy and happy life by making simple lifestyle changes such as eating a healthy and balanced diet, exercising daily, drinking plenty of water, and getting enough sleep. This article will provide a comprehensive guide to boost your immunity and stay safe from diseases.