Updated: May 16
Are you looking for straightforward options that generate results, here are some helpful tips to boost your immune system from A to Zen Therapies.
by Stevie Murphy of believe-big.com
Maintaining a strong immune system is a must for long-term health. While improving yours may seem like a challenge, there are some simple lifestyle changes that can make a big difference.
Get Enough Sleep
Often, the foundation for a robust immune system—and good health in general—is high-quality sleep. Without proper sleep, your body doesn’t have time to complete vital processes to ensure your health.
If you want to keep your immune system in good shape, getting 7–9 hours of sleep a night is crucial for adults. Not only will that help you fight off illnesses, but it also can also improve brain function, assist with tissue repair, and more.
There are plenty of things that may prevent you from getting good sleep, from constant caffeine to blurry lines between personal and professional life. But there are some strategies you can use to find balance and regain quality sleep. Try creating—and following—a good routine. And draw a harder line between work and home, and do your best to keep that boundary.
Eat for Immune Health
If you are going to have a robust immune system, you need to feed your body properly. Focus on high-quality, nutrient-dense whole plant foods, using those as the main building blocks for meals. Those ingredients tend to be higher in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Plus, the fiber can boost your gut health.
Beyond that, eating healthy fats in moderation is a smart move. Omega-3 fatty acids battle inflammation. Since inflammation can harm your immune system, consuming some of those healthy fats regularly is a great idea.
Additionally, make sure to limit your consumption of added sugars. A high sugar intake may promote inflammation, leading to poorer immune system responses.
Exercise can be a powerful immune booster when your workouts are of moderate intensity. It can reduce harmful inflammation, boost circulation, and support cell regeneration, all of which are important for health. For most adults, getting at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise is essential. If you can get up to 300 minutes of moderate exercise or more, that’s even better.
You don’t need a gym membership or fancy equipment to get your heartrate up. Start with a brisk walk around your neighborhood. If you live in an area with a high walk score, you’ll have parks and shops to see on your route, which makes the walk more pleasant. Otherwise, find yourself a good, safe area to walk, jog, run, or bike. Or do something you enjoy that will also get your heartrate up, like playing tennis or basketball.
Pain is a top contributor to stress. Not only does it leave us feeling uncomfortable, but it can affect our sleep, work and interactions with family and friends. Whether you suffer from chronic pain or are dealing with pain as the result of standing or sitting too much, take steps to alleviate or even eliminate your pain.
For back, neck or shoulder pain, working with a dedicated chiropractor can bring you the relief you need. Through a series of sessions, a chiropractor can pinpoint the cause and use a variety of hands-on and at-home treatments to ease your discomfort. For chronic pain, consider a chiropractor or a massage therapist, and focus on some of the inflammatory reduction methods suggested above.
Massage can also be helpful for relieving symptoms of lymphedema. This occurs when fluid builds up in your tissues. A lymphatic drainage massage can help clear your tissues of this fluid by moving it to your lymph nodes. A restorative lymphatic drainage massage is one of the many services available from A to Zen Therapies. Contact us to find out more about how this treatment can improve your skin and boost your immune system.
Reduce Life Stress
Okay, so stress is a natural part of life, we all know that. However, prolonged stress weakens the immune system. This is why it’s important to take steps to decrease extraneous daily stressors in your life.
Start by assessing your home. If you have piles of clutter, paperwork and a general state of disorganization, it’s hard to let go of stress when you get home from a long day. Take a few weekends to fully declutter, clean and organise your space to add harmony. Next, start learning to say no. Adding boundaries allows you to protect your time and limit your stress.
You can also reduce life stress through a support system. You may find that getting together with friends is enough, but if it isn’t, then consider therapy or more formalized support groups. Seek out your community, whether it be online, face-to-face, old friends or new ones. It can make a huge difference.
That means if your job is causing you significant mental and emotional hardships—including leading to signs of burnout, anxiety, or depression—staying could be harming your body’s ability to stay healthy.
If you like your job overall, consider speaking to your supervisor to request a different schedule or different responsibilities—working from home can help improve your mental health. If your work in general leaves you feeling depleted every day, it’s time to start looking for something better. So polish up your CV, and begin reviewing job listings to find something new and fulfilling.
Keeping your immune system in tip-top shape can be challenging. If you struggle to get all of your nutritional needs, adding a supplement to your routine could be a wise choice.
Probiotics can also be a wise addition. When your gut bacteria are in good shape, your immune system may function better, allowing it to more easily separate good cells from dangerous intruders.
Before you add a new supplement to your diet, make sure to speak with a medical professional. That way, you can ensure that you’re making the best choice for your immune system.
Stay Focused on Your Health
It can be hard to keep up self-care and medical practices, but it’s even more challenging to maintain practices to prevent instead of treat a condition. Slipping up feels okay because we don’t really know how much we have risked. Do your best to let your body recharge through eating nutritious foods, getting good rest, and seeking pain relief when needed. And find time to get your heartrate up throughout your day. It may feel like an inconvenience, but it will help you to feel better and stay healthier. As will finding a great support community that meets your emotional needs.