What is the immune system? It is the part of your body with the ability to fight off pathogens (harmful foreign organisms trying to invade your system), such as viruses and bacterial infections. Flu season is among us which means we must take extra care of ourselves in these cold months to stay healthy. In order for your body to healthily take care of YOU, you must take care of IT. Below are some of the ways you can help your body be prepared to fight off sickness.

Healthy Diet

Your body needs the right nutrients to support immune functions, and these nutrients are found in healthy foods. A healthy diet consists of plenty of fruits and vegetables, as well as lean proteins and whole grains. A healthy diet also means limiting the amount of added sugars, saturated fats, and salt you consume. These foods not only have poor nutritional value but also set you back in having a healthy immune system.

Regular Exercise

Exercising regularly helps you feel better overall. Being physically active has proven to induce better sleep at night, reduce anxiety and stress levels, and help your body stay in shape, especially paired with a healthy diet.

Get Lots of Sleep

Sleep is your body’s time to heal and regenerate energy exerted from your day’s activities. Adults should be getting at least 7 or more hours of sleep a night while teens need 8 to 10 hours of sleep. Younger children and infants need up to 14 hours of sleep a day.

Stress Less

There are studies that show high-stress levels lower immunity in a person. Long-term stress causes imbalances in immune cell function. Activities that can help you manage stress include meditation, journaling, yoga, and exercise.

Take Supplements and Vitamins

It’s important to note that no supplements will cure or prevent disease, but they will help boost your immune system to be able to put up a stronger battle against foreign harmful diseases. Some of these minerals, vitamins and other substances that help boost your immune system are:

  • Vitamin D
  • Zinc
  • Vitamin C
  • Elderberry
  • Medical Mushrooms
  • Garlic
  • Prebiotics
  • Antioxidants

Stay Hydrated

Your body is made up of more than 60% water, therefore it needs to stay hydrated in order to work properly. Dehydration can cause headaches, hinder your physical performance, and cause other complications that can hurt your immune system.

Positive Thinking

Your mind is extremely powerful. Keeping a positive mindset is vital for health and wellbeing. Research has shown that practicing positive thoughts reduces stress and inflammation which are both factors that hurt your immune system.

If you’d like to read more on ways to help your immune system, click HERE to check out the CDC’s “Six Tips to Enhance Immunity”.

Don’t forget to follow our social media to stay up to date with nationally recognized days/months, ACP news, job opportunities, and patient stories.