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9 Steps to Boost Your Immune System 2020

Hi, I'm a health enthusiast from the small island nation The Bahamas.

Dynamics of lifestyle on immune response

Our lifestyles are one of the key factors that affect the proper functioning immune system. Pollution, pesticides, food additives, heavy metals and plastics in our water and many other things can be blamed. But the fact is our habits are majorly affecting how our immune system deals with viruses and bacteria.


Water: balances body's functions

9-steps-to-boost-your-immune-system

Naturally, diet is one of the key factors that affect how our immune system functions. But there are other simple changes you can make to your lifestyle to further boost your immunity and maintain strong immune health.

Here are some easy ways to boost your immune system. Most of these ways are just plainly common sense, yet overlooked by most persons as being important.


1. Get enough sleep


Bad sleep habits or poor-quality sleep raises stress hormone levels, which in turn weaken the immune system. Scientists are not exactly sure how this happens but research has confirmed that there is a direct relationship between sleep and the body's ability to fight illness.

The specific results of a recent study should bring this home more clearly. The study found that well-rested people who received a flu vaccine developed stronger immunity to the flu virus, whereas people with poor sleep habits developed less resistance.

Burning the candle at both ends, staying up late, or simply being unable to sleep well is not something to be taken lightly. It's crucial that you structure regular sleep times and to make sure your sleep environment is conducive to a good night's rest.


2. Exercise regularly


Exercise doesn’t necessarily mean strenuous workouts at the gym or a formal exercise class. Thirty minutes a day of moderate exercise like walking, swimming, or cycling can do wonders for immune system health. If you are already practicing some form of exercise, great. If not, you should seriously consider getting more active.

Exercise works to boost the immune system on two levels. It floods your body with endorphins and promotes better sleep, both of which strengthen your body's ability to fight disease.


3. Reduce sugar intake


We've all heard the expression that sugar is poison. It is certainly true when it comes to its effect on our immune system. When sugar gets into our bloodstream, it reduces the number of immune system cells that attack and destroy bacteria. This effect can last for hours after you consume a sugary soft drink or other sugar-packed food.

Reduce your sugar intake by using natural sweeteners like honey or molasses, and eating fresh sweet fruits like bananas, grapes and peaches. Fresh juice and smoothies are another great way to satisfy sugar cravings without harming your immune system.


4. Wash your hands


Regular hand-washing throughout the day is probably something very few of us do. Washing the hands after using the bathroom is probably the limit for most people.

The spread of Covid-19 virus has now made us aware of the importance of washing our hands frequently to prevent the virus from entering our bodies or being passed on to others. Experts are telling us that next to social distance, regular hand-washing is vital to prevent the contraction of this virus.

In any case, washing your hands several times during the day or using a hand sanitizer is just a good health habit that should be part of any daily routine. A little soap and water can go a long way in preventing a long and uncomfortable illness.


5. Reduce stress


Stress hormones are major suppressors of the immune system. Constant stress not only drains you physically but also drains your immune system, putting you at risk of becoming ill more often.

Of course, we recognize that stress is an unavoidable part of life. But regular stress relief should also be a part of our daily lives. Allowing stress to build up is just harmful on so many levels. We've often noticed how we get sick after going through a major stress situation. It's not the stress itself that makes us ill, it’s the weakening effect of stress on the immune system that makes us get sick more easily.

It's crucial that you adopt some form of stress relief into your lifestyle. This simply means making daily time to relax and engage in any activity that you enjoy. It could be anything from a warm bath to a long nature walk, meditation, or enjoying time with your family. Just make sure that you schedule a daily time to unwind and enjoy life.


6. Catch some sun


Sunlight is an excellent natural source of vitamin D. Vitamin D is very beneficial in enhancing our health. Some of the benefits of Vitamin D are : helps regulate mood and ward off depression, fights disease. I really discovered the healing power of the sun when recovering from major surgery recently. Sitting in the sunshine for about 10 minutes a day, greatly assisted my recovery. If you live in a sunny climate, count your blessings and make it a habit to catch some rejuvenating sun rays every day. If your climate is not sunny, make sure to take advantage of sunny days and spend as much time outdoors as possible.


7. Drink plenty of water


This should be an automatic thing, but how many of us neglect to do this? I know personally that being properly hydrated is a must ensuring proper immune system response. A healthy human body is made up of ⅔ water. Our body needs water to protect our body tissues, spinal cord, joints; remove waste; aid in digestion; help the brain function optimally; keep the cardiovascular system healthy and strengthen the immune system dehydrated for a prolonged time, the body’s systems suffer. It is researched that prolonged dehydration and inflammation can contribute to what is called autoimmune diseases.


8. Take probiotics regularly

Most people spend a lot of time trying to get rid of bacteria in their lives, but do you know that not all bacteria is bad for you? In fact, your body relies on millions of healthy, helpful bacteria to keep you safe and healthy every day. And by giving your body beneficial probiotics, you can improve the population of helpful bacteria inside your body that are necessary for your continued health.


You can ensure that your immune system is strengthened by having healthy flora in your intestine. Probiotics come in many forms : supplements and foods. Most probiotic supplements are usually taken on an empty stomach, either first thing in the morning or between meals. Eating foods rich in probiotics can not only prevent illness but also treat some disorders and imbalances. Learning which foods are high in probiotics, as well as the benefits these organisms offer to your body, will help you feel better and stay healthier over time.

Understanding Probiotics

You have bacteria, yeast, and other microbes all over your body, both inside and out. Fortunately, many of those organisms are helpful bacteria that perform vital functions for your cells, tissues, organs, and body systems.

Probiotics and the beneficial bacteria they support can help:

• Boost your immune system, allowing you to heal faster from sickness and injury.

• Prevent infection by stopping hostile bacteria from taking over.

• Improve your digestion, which allows you to better absorb nutrients from the foods you eat.

The majority of helpful bacteria in your body live in your gut and keeping your digestive microflora healthy not only aids your digestion but also ensures your immune system is working properly. These two systems are directly linked.

In concluding , our body immune systems can be boosted with simple, yet effective steps. It's important to our overall health to get needed rest, keep properly hydrated, reduce sugar intake, exercise regularly, wash our hands, get some sun, and take probiotics.


Yogurt : probiotics immune booster

courtesy of Micheile Henderson

courtesy of Micheile Henderson

Sun : Vitamin D Power!

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2020 Denise Claridge