A strong immune system makes a strong person. Then you won’t ever have to worry about catching a common cold or viruses (like the Coronavirus COVID-19) because your body fights off germs and diseases like mortal combat. Being sick leaves you feeling drained and tired but there are steps you can take to prevent illness. There are many tips and tricks to strengthen your immune system, your diet, daily activity, and sleep pattern all affect your immune system. We previously wrote about the things that are lowering our immune systems, here are the top 10 to boost your immune system:
- Exercise regularly – Daily exercise does the body plenty of good. Exercise doesn’t have to be extremely strenuous – or even strenuous at all to qualify as exercise and allow your body to reap its benefits. Even walking for thirty minutes a day will make a difference in your immune system. Someone who doesn’t workout is more susceptible to getting sick rather than someone who does.
- Get enough sleep – Every night you should get seven to nine hours of sleep a night. Not sleeping enough can throw your body off and lead to increased inflammation and the spread of germs. When looking to fight off illness sleep will be your best friend. Read our list of best foods to eat to promote sleep.
- Drink less alcohol and avoid tobacco smoke – Excessive consumption of alcohol weakens the immune system and increases risk of lung infection. Smoking also increases your vulnerability to lung infection, as well as the risk of bronchitis and pneumonia for yourself and those affected by second-hand smoking.
- Eat fruits and vegetables – When eating fruits and vegetables, always look for variety; you want to have brightly colored food. Citrus fruits are a number one when it comes to strengthening your immune system as they pack a ton of vitamin C in them. Some leafy green vegetables contain a strong amount of vitamin C, such as kale and spinach.
- Get fresh air and sunlight – Sunlight triggers the skin’s production of vitamin D. Low levels of vitamin D correlate with an increased risk of respiratory problems, so it’s extremely important to get your daily dose of sunlight. Make sure to put on some sunscreen!
- Manage stress – Stress drains the mind and body and can change your mood. Opening yourself to stress also opens your body up to get sick. Once sick then you’ll be even more tired and stressed so it’s important to take steps to prevent yourself from getting sick. You can manage your stress by simply slowing down. If you have a high-demand, high-paced lifestyle, carve out some time to relax, even if that means substituting your workout for yoga, blaring music to the inconvenience of your neighbors, or going for a mindless drive around town.
- Keep surfaces clean – Touching contaminated objects is one of the leading causes of contracting an illness. Throughout the day you touch so many things other people may have touched – doorknobs, stair railings, appliances, your phone – and then you do the unthinkable without even realizing it: touch your face (or even worse, your mouth!). This kind of contact makes your body vulnerable to potentially harmful bacteria and viruses. In your home make sure to keep surfaces clean with cleaner, particularly one containing tea tree oil because it is a natural antiseptic.
- Use garlic – Adding garlic in its raw form is known to boost your immune system. You want to keep it raw to receive as many health benefits as you can because heat can cook off some of the vitamins you’re wanting to get. Its cloves were shown in a study to help fight off the common cold.
- Drink green tea – Green tea does a lot for the mind and body. The antioxidants in green tea are beneficial in generally strengthening the immune system. It protects against damage from free radicals and keeps the immune system running normally. For more on the restorative effects of green tea, check out our top 10 health benefits of drinking green tea.