We may not even half way through the Winter, and the cold and flu season is sure taking us by storm this year. I don’t know how you are making out, but for my family we sure have been hard with virus after virus. This coming from someone who gets their flu shot annually.
Perhaps, it has been the shift in the weather. We are seeing a lot more snow than we have in years, and we are under recurrent extreme cold weather alerts. OR – perhaps there is just a bad strain of well everything going around this year. Whatever the culprit may be let me just tell you I want to go into a bubble and hibernate until mid to late April.
All joking aside, I have really made it my mission heading into the new year to focus more on my health and work on building my immune system. The slight changes I have made really seem to be helping too. I am seeing an increase in energy. My moods have improved, and – knock on wood – I seem to be steering clear of those nasty cold viruses that my children have brought home since returning to school from Christmas holidays.
There really is no magical cure-all though. The habits you create can only help support your immune system, which might help you avoid getting sick as often. OR – if you do happen to fall ill you may not have to deal with the symptoms of the virus for as long.
If you feel like your immune system could use a little boost, then these tips are just the inspiration you need.
Tips to Help Boost Your Immune System
Drink Your Water. Water is proven to help your body function at optimal levels. By staying hydrated you are flushing toxins out of your body. Looking for a way to jazz your water up even more? Add a slice of lemon. Lemons are powerhouses too when it comes to supporting the immune system and improving digestion. Not only that they are chuck full of vitamin C.
Stay Well Rested. It is a known fact that many of us don’t get enough shut eye every night. Lack of sleep can wreak a lot of havoc on our immune system. Studies have shown that people who don’t get enough sleep are more than likely to get sick after being exposed to a virus than those who do.
Exercise. Try to fit in 30 minutes of physical activity a day. Exercise is proven way to help support the immune system. By exercising you are triggering changes in your antibodies and white blood cells; your body’s key component to fighting disease. Just be sure to listen to your body and not overdo it, as overtraining can cause a hinderance on your immune health.
Eat Nutrient-Rich Foods. What you put in your body can have great impact on your immune system. Maintaining a plant-based diet with the addition of omega 3 fats, lean proteins and whole grains can have a great impact on your health. Some foods to consider adding to your diet are: citrus fruits, dark leafy greens, broccoli, red bell peppers, yogurt, ginger, garlic and almonds.
Take Your Vitamins. While it is important to maintain a well-balanced diet that should in turn provide your body with a lot of the vitamins your body needs daily. Also make a point to take a multi-vitamin, During the Fall and Winter, I also like to add in a Vitamin D supplement, as I know that I don’t get a enough vitamin D during those colder seasons. Lack of vitamin D can suppress the immune system. Always talk to your doctor before adding additional vitamin supplements to your diet to ensure they are right for you and your health.
Herbal Supplements. There are many herbal supplements out there which all support various different functions of the body. Not all of them are right for everyone, but for me I find these supplements to be my go-to during cold and flu season:
- Oil of Oregano. Oil of Oregano has been used traditionally for a wide range of ailments, including colds and flus, indigestion, dental cavities, respiratory disorders, rheumatoid arthritis and urinary tract infections. It is currently being studied for its antimicrobial properties ranging from antiviral, antibacterial to antiparasitic.
- Turmeric. Turmeric is high in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. It is great for natural relieving joint pain. The Curcumin found in turmeric can help boost your immune function.
- Green Tea. Green tea is loaded with powerful antioxidants that help boost the immune system.
- Probiotics. Probiotics are beneficial bacteria or live microorganism that work by colonizing the small and large intestines. They inhibit the growth and activity of harmful organisms.
- Cinnamon. Cinnamon has been shown to support healthy cholesterol levels, soothe peptic ulcers and, more recently, boost cognition and memory. The polyphenols in cinnamon make it an antioxidant powerhouse that enhances the body’s ability to alleviate inflammation. Research suggests that these polyphenols can inhibit the release of arachidonic acid, a highly inflammatory molecule that may contribute to cardiovascular and other chronic diseases.
For other great tips on how to support your overall health and immune function check out Orange Naturals. They have a wide array of vitamins, supplements and articles that will leave you inspired to live your best life.
Disclosure: I am an Orange Naturals ambassador. I receive special perks and compensation as a part of my affiliation with this group. All opinions are those of my own.