Boost your Immunity
Boosting your immunity is not a simple task. However, several dietary and lifestyle changes may strengthen your body’s natural defenses and help you fight harmful viruses, or disease-causing bacteria. Nevertheless, it’s important to remember that your immunity will not strengthen overnight. Rather, this is a process that requires patience, diligence and application. Without a doubt, if you make several lifestyle and dietary changes, you will see your immune system strengthen overtime.
Some examples of these changes include reducing sugar intake, staying hydrated, working out regularly, getting adequate sleep, and managing your stress levels. However, it is very crucial to note that none of these suggestions can prevent contracting a disease or virus. Nevertheless, they may reinforce your body’s defenses, boost your immunity, and help fight these harmful bugs.
What is Immunity?
The immune system is a complex network of cells and proteins, and is the body’s defense against infection. The immune system attacks germs and helps keep us healthy. Additionally, the immune system keeps a record of every microbe it has ever defeated, in types of white blood cells (B- and T-lymphocytes) known as memory cells. This means it can recognize and destroy the microbe quickly if it enters the body again before it can multiply and make you feel sick.
However, some infections (flu and common cold) have to be fought many times because so many different viruses or strains can cause these illnesses. Therefore, catching a cold or flu from one virus does not give you immunity against the others.
Diet affects Immunity
Since the immune system heavily depends on the stomach to remain healthy, the immune system needs good, regular nourishment. As a result, it is no wonder that people who live in poor conditions are more vulnerable to disease. It’s probable that malnutrition affects the immune system causing an increased rate of disease.
There is some evidence that various micronutrient deficiencies of zinc, selenium, iron, copper, folic acid, and vitamins D, A, B6, C, and E — alter immune responses in animals. A great source for much needed vitamin D is the sun. It’s free and plentiful. Make sure you are getting your micronutrients and vitamins for better overall health.
If you feel your diet and activity are not providing you with all your nutritional needs, maybe take a daily multivitamin and mineral supplement, which may bring other health benefits, beyond possible beneficial effects on the immune system. Likewise, some studies show that fruits and vegetables provide nutrients (beta-carotene, vitamin C and E) that can boost your immunity. Vegetables, fruits, and other plant-based foods are rich in antioxidants, and therefore help reduce oxidative stress.
However, remember that more is not necessarily better. Therefore, taking an abundance of a single vitamin or fruit, or vegetable may do more harm than good. Everything in moderation.
Many products in stores claim to support or boost your immunity. On the shelves you’ll find pills and herbal preparations that claim to “support immunity” or boost immune system health. Although some products may alter immune function, currently there is no evidence that they boost immunity to better protect you against disease and infection.