Protection against airborne illness starts within. Build a strong immune system from the inside out, and don’t sabotage your immunity with habits that hinder your body’s ability to fight off infections and illness.
A sedentary lifestyle can reduce immunity 2 ways: It may interfere with good sleep and can lead to obesity. If you sit at a desk all day, this double whammy can leave you and your immune system sluggish. Regular, moderate exercise makes a difference – aim for a brisk walk of 30 minutes. Exercise increases leukocyte levels and these cells fight infections. Consume a plant based nutrition – nutrients that protect cells from free-radical damage that’s been implicated in atherosclerosis, cancer, and arthritis. Free radicals can also interfere with your immune system.
Although short term stress may boost immunity, chronic stress appears to do the opposite, exposing your body to more of the stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline, which suppress immunity. Relaxation techniques can boost immunity and improve sleep. Laughter is an immune booster too. It decreases levels of stress hormones and increases a kind of white blood cell that helps fight infection. At the same time, endorphin and growth hormones are released when we laugh, benefiting the immune system response.
Vitamins C, D, E – The immune system requires C to function, and D and E support immunity. Vitamin C aids to production of anti-stress hormones and interferon, an immune system protein, and stimulates production of infection-fighting white blood cells.
Zinc – An essential mineral that promotes healthy immunity, zinc is found in every cell. Following zinc depletion, all kinds of immune system show decreased function.
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