Boosting the immune system naturally
In these very difficult and uncertain times. The global pandemic has affected us all in some way. Unfortunately, what we’re all experiencing is out of our control but, what we can control is how we choose to react to it.
We’re all being told to wash our hands, keep 1.5 meters apart when in public and wear a face mask to protect ourselves. These are all great preventative measures we can practice to avoid catching Covid-19 or even the common cold. However, there is something else we should be focusing on and that is how to better our immune system.
Our immune system is what protects our bodies against bacteria, viruses and parasites. If you have a weak immune system, you’re more vulnerable to catching a cold, the flu or yes, even the dreaded Coronavirus. If you have a strong immune system, you’re less likely to get sick and not only that, if you do get sick, your body has more strength to fight it. Focusing on building a stronger immune system is also something we should be striving to do in our day to day lives. There are a number of ways to boost your immune system.
Studies show that people who don’t get quality sleep or enough sleep are more likely to get sick after being exposed to a virus, such as the common cold virus. Lack of sleep can also affect how fast you recover if you do get sick. When we sleep our bodies use this time to re-boot and recover. The amount of sleep each person needs differs from one to another but the daily recommendation is between 7 – 9 hours a night. Earthing \ grounding the body whilst in bed has been proven to relax the body and mind, allowing a deeper sleep and better recovery throughout the night. Click here to read more on natural sleep tips.
A diet that is low in processed foods and sugar is related to a healthier immune system. Studies have shown that limiting dietary fat helps strengthen immune defenses. Research also shows that oil may impair white blood cell function and that high-fat diets may alter the gut microbiota that aid in immunity. Maintaining a healthy weight and eating certain foods can also benefit the immune system.
There are a number of foods that can assist your body as they’re high in vitamins and minerals. Vitamin C is thought to increase the production of white blood cells, which are key to fighting infections, disease and foreign invaders. Some foods that are high in Vitamin C are citrus, capsicums and jalapenos. Ginger, Turmeric, Spinach and Broccoli are also amazing super foods that are high in vitamins to boost your body’s immune response. Learn more about immune system boosting foods here from healthline.
Exercise is an important part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. The recommended daily amount of exercise you should be striving for every day is at least 30 minute of vigorous activity. Something that will increase your heart rate and get your blood pumping. This could be anything from a brisk walk (preferably barefoot for earthing and grounding benefits) to riding a bike or even a trip to the gym. Getting enough exercise lowers your blood pressure, balances your body weight, and improves your cardiovascular health. Exercise also reduces stress which can also help with improving our immunity. Stress hormones suppress your immune system. Therefore, being under emotional stress for a prolonged period of time should be avoided. Click here to read how earthing can reduce stress.
Ensuring you are exposed to a healthy amount of sunlight will ensure your body is getting the correct doses of vitamin D. Low levels of vitamin D are related to a higher susceptibility to infection and autoimmune diseases. Our body produces vitamin D via exposure to sunlight. To optimize healthy blood levels, aim to get 10–30 minutes of midday sunlight, several times per week. Be sure to slip, slop, slap before exposing yourself to the sun. You want to make sure you’re getting all of the benefits without doing damage to the skin.
It can be as simple as practicing breathing techniques. There have been specific studies done on practicing daily breathing exercises that assist in boosting your immune response. Wim Hof (aka the Ice Man) is one of the greatest examples of how effective breathing exercises can be for your body and the immune system. One particular study he volunteered for, doctors injected him with an endotoxin in a controlled experiment and his breathing technique enabled him to fight off the bacteria. Click here to see the science behind the Wim Hof method.
Learning to focus on the breath is ideal for lowering stress naturally and allowing the body to operate in an overall healthier state. Read more here to learn about the benefits of meditation and breathing.
Written by Sarah Gordon