Winter is generally associated with various disease season. Whether it would be flu, coronavirus, or even just common cold, no one wants to get sick. The most simple way would be to avoid coming into contact with pathogens, but sometimes we still do it unknowingly and unwillingly. Therefore, it is critically important to keep your body strong and in top shape, just in case some lousy virus or bacteria finds its way to compromise your immune system. So, here are a few tips collected and tested by our team.
Eat more fruits and vegetables
The proper balance of vitamins and minerals is one of the essential factors in keeping the immune system strong. However, during winter months the majority of people are not getting enough due to a shift in diet from rich in veggies summer one to high in grains and carbs winter diet.
Of course, it makes sense, it is harder to get fresh veggies during the winter season, yet the body needs more energy to make up for body heat lost because of cold weather, so people tend to eat foods that are richer in calories. Yet, the majority of that food (and especially junk foods) have low nutritional value.
Nowadays it is not a great problem in most parts of the world, you can buy fresh veggies in almost every store. However, if you live in some rural region which does not have stores, it would be a good idea to preserve vegetables during summer months to have them in winter. The most nutritional way is fermenting them. Also, in our experience, it is the tastiest one if done properly.
So, whatever you eat, try to include more fruits and vegetables in your diet as well as other healthy foods. Preferably fresh ones. Because malnutrition may compromise your immune system.
Get enough sleep
Sleep is a mysterious thing. We do it for about one-third of our lives and most of the time do not even remember it. So you too probably thought to yourself, that if you will sleep less you could get more work done and make more money.
However, that is a mistake that many great (and not so) minds make. Sleep essential for effective brain function. Also, the lack of it may compromise your immune system. So it is a good idea to get a proper amount of sleep, about 7-9h a day for the majority of people.
It will not
only boost your immune system, but it will also make you more productive, and
it will help you keep good mental condition.
It may come as common sense, but it is definitely not a common do.
Scientists have proven that exercise helps to keep your immune system in check, as well as it does help to keep up your mental health. The only drawback of this is that you actually have to exercise.
However, it is for your own good. And it starts feeling good once you start. Of course, there may be some health issues that may prevent you from doing sports, in that case, you could try walking that extra mile each day, or consult your doctor which sports you are able to do.
So, any physical activity will help you boost your immune system. And yes, I mean ANY 😉
A chill pill
You probably have noticed that stress makes you feel bad. The same goes for your immune system. Being chronically stressed has been proven to be as bad as smoking a pack a day and eventually may compromise your immune system.
It is bad not only for hart, or digestive tract, but also for your immune system, so you should prioritize to remove as much stress as possible. Of course, you cannot and should not remove all stress from your life, you need just a little stress to keep you motivated. But here comes the art of managing your stress. So what if your manager shouted on you today? He probably does it every day, so just chill, it is not a big deal.
Stress managing is a difficult thing to master, so don’t be afraid to ask your friends and family for support. However, once you are able to manage your stress, life becomes easier and your immune system stronger.
Maintain proper weight
It has been scientifically proven that obese people have immune systems that are weaker than the average healthy person’s. Therefore, you should try to reach your optimal body weight.
No matter what you see on TV, a healthy diet and exercise are the only way to do so. It may not be easy for some people, but it has clear benefits to the mental and physical health of an individual.
So, here is one more reason to get fit.
No Smoking! And drinks in moderation. What about drugs?
Well, it is quite self-explanatory. Believe it or not, tobacco and alcohol are classified as drugs by scientists. The only difference is that it is legal. And any drug, whether it is legal or not, will take its toll on your body. The best strategy is to avoid it at all.
Yes, I know that not smoking is hard, but you know what is even harder? The flu. So set your priorities straight.
Of course, an occasional pint of beer is most likely not going to make you sick, but, if you cannot keep yourself away from it, just remember to try to enjoy all the bad things in moderation.
Sunlight and Vitamin D
Sun rays enable the human body to produce Vitamin D. However, during cold season people tend to not get enough sun rays, which creates Vitamin D deficiency. Vitamin D is necessary for your body to keep you healthy both mentally and physically. Its deficiency may compromise your immune system.
This has been noticed as early as in the Viking age, of course, they did not know such fancy names as “Vitamins”, but these fellas were quite smart. So smart that they developed Vitamin D supplement – a cod liver oil, without even realizing.
So try to spend more time outside if the sun is shining. Also, including Vitamin D rich foods like fatty fish, mushrooms, and eggs in your diet may boost your immune system and will be good for your overall wellbeing during winter months.
Take care of yourself
Remember somebody saying “put on your jacket, or you will catch a cold”? It is a myth, scientists have proven that common cold is caused by viruses, not by exposing yourself to cold. The real reason why people tend to catch a cold in cold weather is that in humid weather it is easier for viruses to travel and survive. However, putting a jacket might still be a good idea to avoid other health issues related to it.
Of course, the most important thing is to protect yourself from germs. Try to avoid infection, wash your hands frequently, avoid sick people, and cook your food well.
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