An important factor all of us can’t afford to neglect is our health. Our immunity dictates the frequency in which our bodies break down. The immune system fights off pathogenic microorganisms that try to invade our bodies. Strengthening this system is a no brainer. It can be done by altering our lifestyles and changing our diet. Here are science-backed tips that are known to boost our immune levels.
Immunity and sleep are synonymous with each other. Low-quality and inadequate sleep leads to high susceptibility to infections. And that was the case when I worked three jobs. My last shift ended at midnight, while the first shift started at 5 am. At the time, any flu that came along put me to bed.
Scientists link sleep to the secretion of the protein cytokine. Whenever we have infections, the number of cytokines need to be at a certain level. Sleep deprivation ultimately reduces the secretion of these proteins and puts our bodies at risk. The recommended sleeping time for adults is seven hours, while it’s between eight to ten hours for children and teens.
Stress is detrimental to our health, and specifically our immune systems. When our bodies are stressed, they release the hormone corticosteroid. This hormone is known to suppress the number of lymphocytes in our bodies. This, in turn, decreases the ability and effectiveness of the immune system towards pathogens.
Various activities help me manage my stress levels. Some of them include yoga, workouts, deep breathing, meditation, journaling, reading, and mindful living practices. I also seek help by making appointments with licensed therapists or counselors.
Physical activities are hugely beneficial to our bodies. They keep us in shape, build our muscles, reduce our stress levels, and boost our immune system. Daily exercises improve the blood flow in our bodies, which in turn strengthens immunity. However, intensive physical activities are believed to suppress immunity.
Scientists recommend moderate exercises. Such exercises allow immune cells to regenerate frequently. What’s more, they increase the effectiveness of vaccines. Moderate activities can include swimming, walking, jogging, light hiking, bicycling, and controlled gym sessions.
A healthy diet translates to a robust immune system. At the top of my diet plan are whole foods. These foods are rich in antioxidants and nutrients. Antioxidants are particularly useful in combating inflammations in our bodies. Whole food includes fruits, legumes, vegetables, grains, and nuts. Lean protein and healthy fats are also beneficial to our immune system.
Overall, a healthy diet is packed with micronutrients like vitamin C, Vitamin A, and vitamin B6. A regular intake of these micronutrients is essential in maintaining high immunity levels. The foods to avoid are mainly added sugars and refined carbs. These foods contribute to obesity, and the more overweight we are, the higher the risk of contracting diseases like diabetes.
Hydration is vital for our overall health and immunity. Lymph is a fluid in our bodies that requires water to function. The lymph facilitates the transportation of immune cells throughout our bodies. On a different angle, dehydration hinders our focus, performance, moods and alters the way our hearts and kidney function. Whenever we’re in such a state, our susceptibility to infections is boosted.
A daily intake of fluids is needed to stay hydrated. When hydrating, I tend to avoid sweetened tea, coffee, soft drinks, and juice. Most of these beverages contain additives and sweeteners. Water is the best since it lacks additives, sugars, and calories.
Strengthening our immunity starts by adjusting our lifestyle and eating habits. The above tips have been proven to boost immune levels.