5 Tips to Boost Your Immune System
Whether it is the beginning of flu season or the middle of a pandemic, it is always good to take some extra care of your health by focusing on ways to boost your immune system. I try to focus on these healthy habits all year round, but when I have fallen off the wagon or feel like sickness is on its way I like to get back to these healthy strategies to boost my immune system and focus on feeling my best.
I love breaking health down to the simplest of steps. (Taking care of yourself doesn’t have to be difficult!) And I find that these tips are small enough that they can be implemented pretty easily and can make you feel SO much better.
***Just wanted to mention before I get into my favourite ways to boost my immune system that the best way to not get sick is of course to stay away from people who are sick! I just want to give you a few more tools that help make your immune system stronger as well as make you healthier in general.
Some of the vitamins that have been linked to boosting the immune system are Vitamin D, Vitamin C, and Zinc. Vitamin D is found in the sun and I love getting some morning sunlight whenever possible. I do this by doing my morning workout outside in the warmer months and by taking a short mid-day walk in the colder months.
Vitamin C is found in fruits and vegetables like oranges, broccoli, spinach, and even Brussels sprouts! I am a BIG believer in eating greens every day. I add spinach (fresh or frozen) to smoothies, salads, wraps, stir fry, or even in a quesadilla.
You can get all of these vitamins with supplements as well. We get our vitamins at Wal Mart because they are super affordable, or at Costco if we have something we go through a lot of. Vitamin D is a great supplement to take through the winter especially as we don’t get a lot of sunshine in the darker months.
In general, daily movement has SO many health benefits like building a strong heart and aiding in digestion. You know I have written an entire post about working out from home and getting daily movement in, but specifically when I want to build up my immune system I really focus on movement.
The thing is, some kinds of movement can be really hard on your body (like running 12km after months of not running – speaking from experience). Which is why I like to do what some people call ‘mindful movement’ which is movement that doesn’t stress your body but still builds a sweat. Like yoga, cycling, or pilates for example. Stressing your muscles through exercise is great! But focusing on slower movement through flu season or when your body is tired is really beneficial.
Focusing on SLEEP
Getting more than 6 hours is proven to make a BIG difference in terms of getting sick. Creating a solid evening routine is something I have yet to do but I have heard many people say it can help you get a much better/longer sleep. Which is incredibly important for your immune system.
When it comes to rest and sleep, I have a phrase I like to say to myself from Sienna Brown, educator and entrepreneur. It goes like this, “Take the time you need to show up as the best version of yourself”. I am not very good at actually DOING this. But it is a great line to remember whenever you take that extra time to rest and sleep. Not only does sleep boost your immune system, it also helps you show up as your best self!
Get Rid of That Inflammation
Do you love hummus, olive oil, fish, cucumbers, and tomatoes? You might love the Mediterranean diet! That was just my attempted segway to talk about anti-inflammatory foods and how they can help your immune system. Inflammation is what happens when your immune system is triggered by some physical factor. Like when your finger turns red and swells up when you get a splinter. Incorporating anti-inflammatory foods into your meals can make you feel stronger, happier, and healthier.
Examples of foods that CAUSE inflammation include: refined carbohydrates like white bread, fried foods, and soda. Examples of anti-inflammatory foods include: tomatoes, nuts, fatty fish, olive oil, and GREENS! Switching some of the inflammatory foods for salads, smoothies, and mediterranean meals can really get you feeling good.
Stress is Not Your Friend
Speaking of inflammation, one of the best ways to boost your immune system is to de-stress. Stress is linked to a shorter life span and to an imbalanced immune system. I love to de-stress by going on a walk, putting my phone in another room, tidying my house, or calling a friend. Making time for the things that make you feel calm is a great way to boost your immune system!
And that is it folks! Let me know which of these tips you are going to try by messaging me on instagram (@belle.sg.white) and don’t forget to subscribe to my monthly newsletter here for more tips on health, wealth, and becoming your best self!
Stay healthy! Belle