6 Tips to Strengthen Your Immune System
Our immune system is our body’s natural defense against the many viruses and pathogens that we come in to contact with every day. If given the right tools, our immune system can function at its highest potential, allowing us to enjoy all of life’s many pleasures!
Here are six tips to strengthen your immune system:
Maintain a healthy, colorful diet
Get plenty of rest
Incorporate herbs that support a healthy immune system
Maintain a healthy, colorful diet.
Food is medicine, and maintaining proper levels of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants is essential for immune health. Eating a balanced, colorful diet filled with fruits, vegetables and quality sources of protein will give our bodies the nutrients it needs. Incorporating foods like garlic, onion, ginger and turmeric into your diet may strengthen immune health. Our diet also affects the health of our gut which is directly linked to our immune system. Foods and drinks like Kombucha, fermented honey garlic, sauerkraut, kimchi and yogurt contain naturally occurring probiotics that keep our gut flora balanced. Ask your health care provider about what probiotic supplements might be right for you.
Our bodies cannot function properly without proper hydration – this includes our immune system. Aim to drink at least 8, 8oz glasses of water per day. More if you can!
Not only does exercise help to prevent chronic disease like high blood pressure and heart disease, it also is crucial for maintaining a healthy immune system. It promotes good blood flow, may help to flush out bacteria and toxins, and reduces stress hormones. Get in the habit of moving your body daily with a healthy mix of cardio, weights and stretching.
Stress has a nasty way of creeping in to our daily lives, especially in our current fast paced society. Stress affects the body’s immune response by increasing cortisol levels and cytokines which lead to inflammation and lowers the body’s ability to fight infection. It is easier said than done but incorporating time for self-care in to your day to reduce stress is crucial. So take a bath, schedule that massage, meditate, practice breath work, read or take a walk – whatever helps you find that chi!
Incorporate herbs that support a healthy immune system.
Herbs like Elderberry, Echinacea, Astragulus, Ginger and Oregano have been used for hundreds, if not thousands of years to support a healthy immune system. The great philosopher and physician Hippocrates endearingly called Elderberry his “great medicine chest” due to its many uses. Recent studies have shown that Elderberry can even reduce the duration and severity of symptoms of viral infections by up to 50%! Elderberry Syrup, Fire Tonic and Fermented Honey Garlic are popular folk remedies that not only taste delicious, but help our immune system to thrive.