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FOURTEEN WAYS TO NATURALLY BOOST YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM…

Here are fourteen ways to naturally boost your immune system to help keep yourself healthy.

  1. Mix up your shower temperature. Changing it to either hot or cold every 2 minutes will boost your immunity by increasing two types of white blood cells.
  2. Drink, drink, and drink. Your immune system relies on the water so drink lots.
  3. Sleep – poor sleep can affect the immune system so the more sleep you get the better you will feel.
  4. Laugh – we all need it nowadays but studies have shown it boosts energy, decreases stress hormones, improves immunity, and diminishes pain. I have a few videos of my granddaughter I watch if I feel like a giggle but there are plenty on YouTube.
  5. Ditch the dairy – try to avoid dairy as it is mucus-forming and an inflammatory product.
  6. Eat to Beat – include pumpkin and sunflower seeds, fish, and leafy green vegetables into your diet. Also garlic, red meats, lentils and berry fruits, papaya, kiwi, peppers, broccoli, and brussels sprouts. All types of leafy greens are great for the immune system.
  7. Leave the sweet stuff alone as sugar can have an inflammatory effect and feeds yeasts and bacteria in our body which can prolong a condition or illness.
  8. Get out in the fresh air – those who exercise moderately are 25% less likely to develop a cold compared to those who recently go out regularly.
  9. Hug a tree as with Covid-19 most of us cannot hug our family and friends. Physical touch has been something we have missed greatly. It can help to decrease the level of the stress hormone cortisol in your body which decreases your immune system. If it is just the two of you living together at the moment then make sure you hug each other regularly.
  10. Pump up your Vitamin D – according to the NHS The Daily Telegraph has reported that “vitamin D ‘triggers and arms’ the immune system”. It said that researchers believe that vitamin D plays a key role in boosting the immune system. It is important to have enough vitamin D to maintain a healthy body. Vitamin D forms in our skin in response to sunlight. However, care should be taken to avoid burning or over-exposure. Vitamin D is also found in foods such as oily fish, eggs, fortified margarine, some breakfast cereals, and vitamin supplements.
  11. Start a new hobby – Woman & Home wrote “Getting into physical hobbies promotes good health,” Dr. Partha Nandi, a medical doctor and leading patient advocate, agrees. “These hobbies not only benefit the body but also help in making your mind more alert and sharp.” But you don’t have to get physical to reap the benefits. “Science is finding that the hobby diverts the focus of attention away from the problem causing the stress and places it on the hobby. People who engaged in leisure activities were 34 percent less stressed and 18 percent less sad during the activities.” Plus, “hobbies are a great way of meeting new people, and interaction is great for the spirit and body”. Also, check my post yesterday on how to find a new hobby here.
  12. Don’t smoke – I’m sure I don’t really need to write why you should not smoke but just as a reminder – the NHS says – People breathe more easily and cough less when they give up smoking because their lung capacity improves by up to 10% within 9 months. Within 2 to 12 weeks of stopping smoking, your blood circulation improves. This makes all physical activity, including walking and running, much easier. When you stop smoking, your senses of smell and taste get a boost. Half of all long-term smokers die early from smoking-related diseases, including heart diseaselung cancer, and chronic bronchitis. This list is a small number of reasons to stop smoking but is very important with how the Covid-19 virus affects your health.
  13. Maintain a healthy weight – start your new year with a determination and mission to lose some weight. You can only feel better. Why not raise some funds in the process and sign up for a charity.
  14. Avoid alcohol. Take advantage of dry January and carry on avoiding alcohol for the time being.

Source NHS, Woman & Home

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THE BEST FOODS AND LIFESTYLE TO HELP BOOST YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM…

Which foods help boost our immune system? Well, according to BMI Health Care eating healthily can boost your wellbeing in countless ways, and bolstering your immune system is just one of these.

Eating a good mix of all the food groups, avoid overly salty, sweet or processed foods, and eat at least five portions of fruit and vegetables a day.

There are certain foods that contain particularly high levels of vitamins and minerals known to boost the immune system. So are these really ‘immune system booster foods’? 

Well, yes and no. Eating certain foods can certainly support a healthy immune system and improve your overall health. But they won’t automatically make you able to fight off infections. You’ll only feel their benefit as part of a healthy lifestyle overall.

The top 15 foods that can help boost your immune system are –

1. Garlic

2. Elderberry

3. Poultry

4. Mushrooms

5. Citrus Fruits

6. Bell Peppers

7. Broccoli

8. Carrots

9. Ginger

10. Cabbage

11. Almonds

12. Spinach

13. Sweet Potato

14. Beans

15. Live Yoghurt

To find out more why these 15 foods help boost your immune system then check out this article on BMI Health Care.

Health Harvard point out that like any fighting force, the immune system army marches on its stomach. Healthy immune system warriors need good, regular nourishment. Scientists have long recognized that people who live in poverty and are malnourished are more vulnerable to infectious diseases. Whether the increased rate of disease is caused by malnutrition’s effect on the immune system, however, is not certain. There are still relatively few studies of the effects of nutrition on the immune system of humans.

They say it’s not just the food we eat that can boost our immune system it’s doing all the other right things that will work which include not smoking, exercise regularly, maintain a healthy weight,drink alcohol in moderation, get adequate sleep and remember to wash your hands frequently.

If you are going to supplement then supplement wisely Healthline say that some studies indicate that the following supplements may strengthen your body’s general immune response:

  • Vitamin C. According to a review in over 11,000 people, taking 1,000–2,000 mg of vitamin C per day reduced the duration of colds by 8% in adults and 14% in children. Yet, supplementing did not prevent the cold to begin with (7Trusted Source). 
  • Vitamin D. Vitamin D deficiency may increase your chances of getting sick, so supplementing may counteract this effect. Nonetheless, taking vitamin D when you already have adequate levels doesn’t seem to provide extra benefits (31Trusted Source).
  • Zinc. In a review in 575 people with the common cold, supplementing with more than 75 mg of zinc per day reduced the duration of the cold by 33% (32Trusted Source).
  • Elderberry. One small review found that elderberry could reduce the symptoms of viral upper respiratory infections, but more research is needed (33Trusted Source).
  • Echinacea. A study in over 700 people found that those who took echinacea recovered from colds slightly more quickly than those who received a placebo or no treatment, but the difference was insignificant (34Trusted Source).
  • Garlic. A high quality, 12-week study in 146 people found that supplementing with garlic reduced the incidence of the common cold by about 30%. However, more research is needed (35Trusted Source).

While these supplements demonstrated potential in the studies mentioned above, that doesn’t mean they’re effective against COVID-19.

Furthermore, Healthline say supplements are prone to mislabeling because they aren’t regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Thus, you should only purchase supplements that have been independently tested by third-party organizations like United States Pharmacopeia (USP), NSF International, and ConsumerLab.

And, of course if you are taking regular medication then see you GP before you start taking any supplements. For more information head to the Healthline website.

Source : Healthline, BMI Health Care, and Harvard Health