With all the viruses buzzing around these last few weeks (which will continue for the next few weeks BTW), we're all worried about being able to spend time with loved ones, perhaps missing work or simply just getting out of rhythm with life when you are bedridden and not able to do anything. Here are 7 great tips for fending off infection and boosting your immune system to keep you healthy and strong this season.
Feeling a little sick already? Try these 3 Quick things.
1. Drink Green Tea.
A 2021 study showed that consuming green tea can significantly lower the risk of upper-respiratory tract infections by helping to prevent viral binding and invasion of your airway. Here's something new, If you don't like drinking green tea, just gargle with it! That same study showed this practice to be quite effective. And the data here is quite reliable. (PMID: Preventive effects of tea).
2. Eat chicken soup.
This sick-day staple really can make you feel better instantly. Research shows that chicken soup can calm inflammation in your body. This may ease some of your symptoms, such as aches and stuffiness. What’s more, this meal also has liquid and calories to give your body the energy it need to help recover.
3. Drink Lots Of Fluids.
Getting plenty of fluids thins your mucus and breaks up congestion. It also prevents the headaches and fatigue that dehydration causes. Keep a glass or reusable bottle on hand, and refill it with water. Skip caffeinated sodas, coffee, and alcohol, which can dry you out.
4 Big Habits that can improve your immune system, but in general live a better life.
4. More Sleep
Sleep is critical for your brain, your heart, and, yes, your immune system, so it's imperative to get the sleep you need, which is generally seven to eight hours a night for the average adult.
5. Eat a Plant-Strong Diet
You really are what you eat and if you consume a high number of plant-based foods, you'll be fueling your body with the nutrients your immune system needs, including vitamin B12, calcium, iron, zinc, and iodine. You can find an abundance of all these nutrients in whole-food and plant-focused meals
6. Exercise Improves Immunity
You know you need to exercise regularly, and if there was ever motivation to move more than you are now, let this be it: "Killer T cells (immune cells) in your body increase when you exercise! This means getting sick less often because you will have a stronger immune system!
7. Take a Daily Stress Break (important)
It's impossible to be alive and not experience stress, but we all need to find ways to manage it. Give yourself daily time-outs from stress. Studies show that life events such as relationship problems, career problems, and job loss can depress levels of NK and T cells, thus lowering immunity, even routine daily stressors such as deadlines, traffic jams, and long Starbucks lines can cause changes in immunity. You can't avoid stress, but you can at least improve your coping mechanisms, which is why it’s so important to take a time-out at least once a day to give your immune system a break. Spend 20/30 minutes every day doing something you enjoy, whether that's reading, meditating, doing yoga, taking a walk.