If you’re like many people in Irvine, CA, you’re constantly looking for ways to boost immunity. Preventing illness is far better than trying to cure it. Improving your immune system is the best way to do that. You can stay healthier by focusing on good immune health. Your immune system is your body’s first line of defense to prevent invaders from entering. If they do manage to enter the body, the immune system also weakens and destroys them.
The food you eat can strengthen the immune system.
Fruits and vegetables provide the phytonutrients, minerals, and vitamins you need for a robust immune system. Vitamin C is an immune booster. Three foods high in vitamin C are red bell pepper, citrus fruit, and cantaloupe. Phytonutrients like anthocyanin also boost the immune system. Anthocyanins are deep red, purple, and blue fruits and vegetables, like blueberries and eggplant. Food high in vitamin A also helps improve immunity. Consider carrots, strawberries, and Brussels sprouts. Zinc is also an immune booster. It’s in grains and meat.
Inflammation is either acute or chronic.
When your immune system works properly, it causes inflammation when you get a cut, sprain a muscle, or develop a fever. That’s acute inflammation and the immune system is working its hardest. If the immune system is unhealthy or subject to other conditions that negatively affect it, it can cause chronic inflammation. Chronic inflammation causes conditions like arthritis, heart disease, and diabetes. Eating food with added sugar can lead to chronic inflammation and break down the immune system. Highly processed food is another culprit. They also negatively affect the gut microbiome which improves the body’s immunity.
Get plenty of sleep.
Americans are sleeping less, gaining weight, and getting sicker. The three are all related. When you lack sleep, it reduces the amount of leptin your body makes. Leptin is the hormone that makes you feel full. It increases ghrelin, the hunger hormone. When you lack adequate sleep, it can increase your blood pressure and your risk of illness. It can also make you fat, and obesity increases the risk of chronic inflammation. It’s not just about the number of hours you get, but the quality of sleep, too. Sleep in a dark room and don’t take electronic devices with you, like TV or computers. Studies show that people getting less than 6 hours of sleep are more likely to catch a cold than those who slept longer.
- Get active and you’ll boost your metabolism and your immune system. It helps reduce chronic inflammation and improve the gut microbiome that boosts immunity. It helps produce antioxidants, too. Overexercising has the opposite effect, lowering immunity.
- Practice safe sunning to build vitamin D. Exposing your body to the sun without sunscreen at midday for 10-30 minutes three times a week is enough. The lighter your skin, the less time you should spend.
- Eating probiotic and prebiotic food can improve your gut microbiome, an important part of the immune system. Prebiotics feed the beneficial microbes and are food high in soluble fiber. Probiotics are foods like yogurt, kefir, and sauerkraut.
- Put a lid on stress. Exercise helps burn the hormones of stress. Meditation, a healthy diet, and laughter can help relieve stress. Plan activities with friends you enjoy and have a healthy meal together afterward.
For more information, contact us today at Next Level Fitness