Everyone wants to know how to avoid getting a cold or the flu. If we take good care of ourselves throughout the year we have a better chance of warding off those winter nasties. These five immune boosting tips may be the place to start.
A healthy diet
Eating a consistently healthy diet year-round is best for your overall health, but may also help to keep your immune system strong. Ensure that you’re consuming a colourful mix of fruit and vegetables, which are high in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. It’s also important to opt for lean protein and wholegrains. While alcohol and foods with added sugar are fine to consume every now-and-then, it’s best to go easy on them to keep your diet as healthy as possible.
Staying in shape
Staying fit is a great way to help keep you healthy and your immune system firing on all cylinders. That doesn’t mean you have to run a marathon, but a brisk walk for 20 minutes or other light exercise can be beneficial.
Sleep is an immune boosting tool we all have access to. Making sure our bodies have time to rest and recover is important. While everyone’s body is different, it’s recommended that adults get between seven to nine hours of sleep a night.
Wash your hands regularly
While washing your hands often with soap and running water may not boost your immune system, it’s one of the simplest and most effective ways to help protect you from catching a cold or the flu. This is because you can pick up viruses by touching hands or objects (e.g. a door handle or phone) that someone with a cold or flu has touched. It’s also best to avoid rubbing your eyes, or touching your nose or mouth if your hands are dirty because this is how the infection gets into your body.
When we’re stressed our bodies release hormones which can affect our immune system. Finding a way to manage your stress or trying to avoid stressful situations may help. Perhaps it’s a matter of setting the alarm 15 minutes earlier to avoid the daily rush out the door, or starting a new organisation system at home or work.
While a strong immune system isn’t a guarantee that you won’t get sick, these simple tips may help you to feel great every day.