Immune health and what you can do to boost it naturally
Usually January is a month full of good intentions. We resolve to join the gym, cut down on junk food and lots of other things! Often we put a lot of pressure on ourselves and end up quitting a couple of months in because what we are doing is not sustainable. This year more than ever with everything thats going on we DO need to take care of our bodies but there is no sense in over loading ourselves. Immune health is really important to prevent sickness. We’ve got a few tips on how to boost your bodies natural defences to keep yourself healthy over the winter season.
- Get plenty of sleep. Sleep is a massively under rated tool for recovery. Poor sleep quality or lack of sleep means your body isn’t resting efficiently and therefore not running on optimum health. Not sleeping enough also lowers your motivation to get out and exercise and can also make you tempted to reach for sugary foods to get an energy rush. Not everyone needs a full 8 hours sleep but its important to aim for at least 6/7 quality hours every night.
- Eating more whole foods. Foods that are less processed are easier for your body to break down so you can get the best nutritional benefit from them and provide healthy energy levels for your body. Also ensure you are drinking enough water to keep yourself hydrated.
- Look after your gut. Gut health is massively linked to overall health. Even with a good diet if your gut isnt working right you may not be absorbing the vitamins and minerals from your foods properly. Consider adding some fermented foods to your diet such as a live natural yoghurt or sauerkraut. You can check out some more gut health tips here –> Gut health and your immunity
- Engage in moderate exercise. You don’t need to be out running or lifting weights 7 days a week but even getting 30 minutes 3 times a week will help boost your overall health. Fresh air is particularly important and a brilliant mood lifter
- Manage your stress levels. We all need some stress in our lives but when its getting to the point its causing you upset its not good. Long term stress can promote inflammation in the body and in children stress can suppres the immune response. Try and switch off your phone for an hour or two every day, take a walk in the fresh air, phone a friend for a catch up or read a good book. Whatever you need to do to chill out…
What about supplements? There has been a lot in the media lately about different supplements that can treat or prevent Covid. These claims are absolutely untrue and your best defense against Covid is hand hygiene, keeping your contacts small, wearing a mask and staying out of crowded places. However there are some supplements you can take which may help to boost your body’s general immune response. We would recommend checking with your doctor before starting any new supplement particularly if you are on any medication.
- Vitamin C: a really powerful antioxidant which can strengthen your bodys natural defences. It also helps encourage the production of white blood cells which may help protect the body against infection
- Vitamin D: helps regulate immune function and help the body stay balanced.
- Zinc: may help reduce the duration of sickness and speed up recovery from illness. Zinc also fights infections and can help to heal wounds.
- Echinacea: may help stimulate the immune system and has anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties which may offer protection against colds and flus.
Remember, supplements can only “supplement” what you are already doing. The most important thing is to have a balanced diet, to stay active and to reduce stress. If you have any further queries please send us a message to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our Facebook page