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Make Health a Priority and Boost Your Immunity With These Simple Steps

Faced with new restrictions, and lockdowns, we are once again faced with an uncertain future. So, we need to revisit the health front.

We need to prioritize our health now

We need to prioritize our health now

The Virus Strikes Again

History seems to be repeating itself. After more than an year of uncertainty, struggling with lockdowns, social distancing, work from home and other restrictions, we were trying to find ways to adjust and we were sort of getting used to the new normal. The arrival of the coveted vaccine brought immense hope. We rejoiced and cheered and thought we could take the shot and everything would be fine.

But that was not the case as the rising number of infections showed. Faced with new restrictions, and lockdowns, we are once again faced with an uncertain future. So, we need to revisit the health front and take steps to improve our immunity and make ourselves strong to face any crisis.

Some insights to improve immunity:

Get some Sunshine, Get vitamin D

Get some Sunshine, Get vitamin D

Sunshine can Protect you from Covid

Now there is proof of Vitamin D’s role in boosting immunity, so spend time outdoors in the sun to boost your immune system.

Along with items like phones, gaming consoles, laptops the demand for Vitamin D supplements was 41.5% higher than the previous year. The sunshine vitamin has been selling fast because many studies have shown a link between the deficiency and lower immunity.

A study cites that people who had been diagnosed with vitamin d deficiency were 77% more prone to get infected with covid. A study in Italy found that among the patients hospitalized with acute respiratory failure due to covid, 81% were vitamin D deficient.

Another study published in the British society for immunology’s ‘Immunotherapy Advanced Journal’ in November shows that vitamin D3 improves immunity in older adults. So, maintaining a healthy level of vitamin d whether with supplements or sun exposure will protect us from all kinds of diseases. But we have to ensure that we don’t overdose it, as overexposure to the sun or overdose of vitamin D can cause more harm than good.

Sleep Well to boost Immunity

Sleep Well to boost Immunity

Sleep Well, Stay Healthy

Sleep is the body’s own anti-inflammatory cleansing process. Melatonin also called the sleep hormone not only helps us sleep but also stops the immune system from going erratic during an infection. It is produced naturally in the body and its production increases with evening darkness. It promotes healthy sleep and orients the circadian rhythm.

Research shows that the covid virus could be blocked by melatonin. Even mild cases turn life threatening because of the immune system’s hyper reaction which has been the biggest challenge faced by medical professionals. If research on the effect of melatonin on covid are successful, then it would be the cheapest and most accessible medicine to counter covid19.

Lunchtime Workout is Popular

Lunchtime Workout is Popular

Opt for a Lunchtime Workout

We all know how important exercise is to build immunity and keep fit. One interesting workout regime that can be most useful to work at home professionals is the lunch time workout.

A quick high intensity workout during one’s lunch break is the most popular fitness trend this year. And 12 pm has become the most popular time to work out during the day. When you don’t have much time on weekdays, a quick high intensity workout can work wonders for your health. Squats, burpees, lunges, mountain climbers, jumping jacks, planks, sprints and yoga coupled with a healthy meal to fuel the body can contribute to greater health and maintain a better work-life balance.

Benefits of Lunchtime Workouts

  • Efficient management of time.
  • Minimizes the use of tools or equipment.
  • Break from screen time reduces stress.
  • More time with family and entertainment in mornings and evenings.
  • Improves mood and enthusiasm.

Midday Diet after a High Intensity Workout

A good nutritious diet is recommended after a high intensity workout.

  • It is always better to eat after than before a high intensity workout.
  • Post workout meal should be light and healthy.
  • A balanced meal with fibers, proteins, and healthy fats is a must.
  • Soups and smoothies are a good alternative.

Self-Care is Important

It is important to make self-care a regular practice. The Pandemic has made us realize the need for self- care-to take good care of body and mind. Self-care is “the ability of individuals, families, and communities to promote health, prevent disease, maintain health and to cope with illness and disability with or without the support of a healthcare provider” This is the definition given by WHO.

Today one needs to invest in self-care every day on a regular basis. It involves hygiene, nutrition and lifestyle. Environmental factors, socioeconomic factors, self-medication also impact self-care. Some fundamental factors that influence self-care are self-reliance, personal responsibility, empowerment, and efficacy.

Some Points to Consider

  • Be kind to yourself.
  • Healthy eating is vital to fuel the body and improve immunity and to keep illness away.
  • Include more movement in your day to day life, housework can keep one physically active.
  • Delegate the work wherever possible. You can’t do everything by yourself. Others in the family need to contribute for the smooth running of the household.
  • Make your own to-do list and do not follow someone else’s list because it is important to know what nurtures you and what is best for you.
  • Me time. Allocate some time for yourself and shut down from everything else. Meditation or just being in a state of calmness can be healthy. Spend some time alone to avoid physical and mental stress and burnout.
A Plant Based Diet is Beneficial

A Plant Based Diet is Beneficial

Focus on your Diet

Consuming natural foods, avoiding caffeine and unnecessary sugar, choosing nutritious snacks to satisfy hunger pangs are some of the steps one can take for better diet and health.

Superfoods to boost immunity: A healthy immune system is influenced by what you eat. Here are a few super foods to help boost your immunity.

  • Vegetables like cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli are a great source of vitamins and minerals. In addition to improving immunity, they help to cut the risk of cancer and heart disease
  • Modern consumption of coffee has been found to be beneficial as coffee contains chlorogenic acid which act as antioxidant and free radical scavenger and help in reducing inflammation in the body. Black coffee or coffee with skimmed mild are preferred.
Berries are good for Immunity

Berries are good for Immunity

  • Grains contain rich dietary fiber that help in regulating blood sugar levels and cholesterol. Studies have shown that a diet rich in whole grains, in addition to improve immunity, reduced the risk of stroke, heart disease, diabetes and obesity. As they keep you full for a longer time, overeating can be avoided.
  • A plant-based diet and substituting beans for meat can reduce the risk of heart diseases to a great extent. More fiber and less saturated fat in your diet can help improve immunity.
  • Juicy blueberries and strawberries are full of antioxidants and help improve blood sugar and insulin levels apart from being high in fiber. They help fight inflammation and keep cholesterol levels in check. They are good for overall good health and immunity.
Meditate to Stay Calm

Meditate to Stay Calm

Feel Calm and Let Go of Stress

  • A method used by professional speakers to help them feel calm and confident. Place a hand on your abdomen and take full breaths, feeling the abdomen move in and out. This deep breathing slows heart rate making you calm and ready to take any challenge.
  • Start your day by turning off as many app notifications as possible. Notifications distract and tend to tempt you into the online world which in turn can lead to stress.
Deep Breathing For immunity

Deep Breathing For immunity

  • Do not carry negative feelings throughout the day. Vent them out in your journal, in the air or to a loved one.
  • Mantras or positive phrases should be repeated out loud. It could be as simple as ‘stay calm’, ‘be strong’, Mount these mantras where you can see and chant them.
  • Rest your brain by doing something simple and repetitive like knitting, laundry, dusting. This helps you to retrospect on the day’s events and process on it.


MUSIC  HEALS

MUSIC HEALS

Effect of Music on our Bodies

In a recent research conducted by researcher Dr. David Lewis, new links have been established to show how music affects humans in terms of body, mind, and behaviors. It covers ten different reactions to music, like increased memory function, feelings of happiness, and increase or decrease in heart rate. In fact the song "Weightless" was constructed by Marconi Union in collaboration with sound therapists to help slow a listener's heart rate, reduce blood pressure and lower the levels of stress hormone cortisol. Dr.Lewis was supposed to have said that the music was so effective that many women became drowsy, and he advised against driving while listening to it as it could prove dangerous.

The report says that 72% believe music has helped them get through the difficult time during the pandemic. According to the data, music is also helpful in falling asleep. It was found that when the respondents listened to energized music, they felt pleasure and excitement. Whereas sad music caused feelings of sadness.

Effect of Music on Humans

Ways in which music affect humans:

  • Increased memory function
  • Happiness
  • Tears
  • Slow down, relax or speed up heart rate
  • Create friendships, relationships
  • Shape one’s identity
  • Tingling in the spine. Make hair stand on end
  • Pupil dilation and trigger fight or flight
  • Create a ‘curling’ effect
  • Affect our actions

Marconi Union - Weightless (Official Video)

Giving Back to Life Benefits Us-What the Scriptures Say

The Bhagavata Purana, a text like the Vedas revered by Vaishnavas (people who worship Vishnu as the supreme God), highlights that everything that is part of our material world, air, water, fire, earth, plants, animals, fellow human beings, outer space are manifestations of the divine. Hence, we must respect them and do our bit to preserve and nurture them. It is our ethical duty to safeguard planet earth and its eco systems and contribute to the welfare of the world.

In recent years enough evidence has been found by scientists to prove the beneficial effects of altruism. A study published in the American journal of public health found that people who are altruistic were able to control their negative emotions easily. Research has proved that being unselfish leads to better physical and mental health and even helps prolong life substantially. Altruistic people tend to feel happier, have enhanced positive emotions, and greater levels of life satisfaction.

As per the scriptures, man is created in the image of god and our life can be meaningful only if we live up to that image. So, we need to learn to give back selflessly to life, without asking anything in return. This will give us absolute joy and also prove beneficial to our health.

Conclusion

As the pandemic continues unabated, we need to take steps to improve our immunity to stay safe and healthy. A plant based diet rich in dietary fiber, avoiding sugar and chocolates and excessive caffeine, practicing mindful meditation to lower stress and anxiety and improve focus are some of the methods to improve our immunity. Physical activity, exercise, and sun exposure are important.

A half hour of exercise five times a week can keep one’s body in prime shape and free from illnesses. To live life to the fullest, one has to be healthy. Spending few hours doing the things you love, be it a creative hobby, or just unwinding with friends over a cup of tea, a dedicated me time, gives one a boost of energy to work and enjoy life with a positive attitude.

At the same time, being unselfish and helping others can uplift us and make us feel happier, thus improving our health. So let us learn to give back selflessly to life and find joy in our own life. The best advice is to wear a mask, keep distance and get good sleep, take a supplement when necessary and eat well. Make health a priority and take steps to boost your immunity to stay safe from the virus.

References

https://apps.who.int/iris/handle/10665/205887

https://www.britannica.com/topic/Bhagavata-purana

https://www.inc.com/melanie-curtin/neuroscience-says-listening-to-this-one-song-reduces-anxiety-by-up-to-65-percent.html



This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 VIDYA D SAGAR

Comments

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on April 11, 2021:

Thanks Devika for the visit and comments. Much appreciated. Take care, stay safe.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on April 11, 2021:

A well-advised hub on trying to live a healthy lifestyle.

Chrish Canosa from Manila Philippines on April 10, 2021:

Absolutely!!! Take care also... Kisses

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on April 10, 2021:

Thanks Chrish for the visit and nice comments. With so much uncertainty nowadays due to the pandemic, we have to do our bit and take utmost care. Have a great day, stay safe.

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on April 10, 2021:

Thanks Manatita for your kind comments. As you said Food acts like a natural medicine. By changing to a healthy diet we can avoid many diseases. Have a good day, take care stay safe.

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on April 10, 2021:

Thanks Peggy for the nice comments. Much appreciated. True it is up to us to do our part to overcome this pandemic as it does not seem to go away so soon. Self care is most important at this time. Have a good day, take care, stay safe Peggy.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on April 10, 2021:

Your tips are excellent to keep our bodies and minds in optimum shape as we battle viruses like COVID-19. It is up to all of us collectively to do our part to overcome the current pandemic.

Chrish Canosa from Manila Philippines on April 10, 2021:

Great advices for health to remain still. Specially during nowadays. Stay healthy everyone. Blessings to you and your family....

manatita44 from london on April 10, 2021:

A beautiful, beautiful and very detailed write, packed with inner foods essential to health, like a good natural medicine. Well researched, thought out and exquisite piece!

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on April 10, 2021:

Thanks Flourish for the visit and the nice comments. Its wonderful listening to music with your pet. It is very calming. I do it too with my pet dog. He seems to love music just like me and we both enjoy music and relax together. Pets have been our real saviors during this pandemic. Have a great day and stay safe Flourish.

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on April 10, 2021:

Thanks Ann for the visit and the nice comments. Yes the threat still looms large and our old normal life seems far away. Music is my favorite get away too. Walking is the best exercise. You are lucky to live around the sea and beach. Just sitting on the beach watching the sea can be very calming. Have a good day, stay safe and healthy.

FlourishAnyway from USA on April 10, 2021:

I like your advice on sleep, diet, and music especially. I find that taking time with my cats helps to relax me. We crochet together while listening to music or a book on Audible.

Ann Carr from SW England on April 10, 2021:

All good advice to help us be as healthy as possible, especially when Covid remains a threat. Apart from the diet and exercise, I find that laughter and music boost me tremendously. I walk each day if possible, as I'm lucky to live round the corner from the sea and a lovely beach.

I wish you safety and good health.

Ann

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on April 10, 2021:

Thanks Alicia for the kind comments. Much appreciated. Things had improved and we were hoping for normalcy when again there have been fresh cases causing concern. The best option is for us to boost our immune system and avoid the danger of infection. Have a great day, stay safe Alicia.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on April 09, 2021:

Thank you for sharing your tips. It’s important that we try to keep our immune system strong, especially in the current situation. It’s a shame that the problem seems to be getting worse again after improving, but we need to keep fighting.

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on April 09, 2021:

Hi Pamela,

Thanks for your kind comments. The situation is quite worrisome here with cases rising rapidly and staying healthy is the only option to stay safe. A few lifestyle changes can help boost our immunity and keep us healthy. Have a nice day, stay safe Pamela.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on April 09, 2021:

This is an article with excellent advice, Vidya. It is more important than ever to take steps to be healthy. I like your suggestions.

Blessings

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on April 09, 2021:

Amen Misbah!!

Misbah Sheikh from The World of Poets on April 09, 2021:

May God Bless us all, Amen!!

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on April 09, 2021:

Thanks Misbah for your kind comments. The increasing cases of covid is a cause for concern here. Some people have got it in spite of taking the vaccine. So I think we should concentrate more on boosting our immune system to fight the virus. It looks as if it is going to stay with us for a long time. Take care, stay safe.

Misbah Sheikh from The World of Poets on April 09, 2021:

Well researched article. All we need is to be kind to ourselves. You have described everything in good detail.

A good immune system is beneficial to defeat any kind of disease in the human body

Thanks for sharing

Blessings and Peace!!

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