The best way to prevent getting a cold, flu and many other illnesses is to start mobilizing your efforts into strengthening your immune system. It may require you to rethink some of your personal lifestyle habits, but making just a few pivotal changes can aid in making you more resistant to the germs, bacteria and viruses that try to destroy your health.
Some of the methods you can use include:
Consume foods that help to boost your immune system. It’s easy to fall prey to fattening, calorie-laden treats to satisfy your hunger, but, not everything that is good to you is good for you.
Eat foods such as onions, garlic, leafy green vegetables, sweet potatoes, broccoli, red bell peppers, apricots, hot chilies, oranges, blueberries, apples, mangoes, bananas, yogurt, wild salmon, cod and mackerel. Vitamin C rich foods are especially good for getting rid of harmful bacteria. Add them to your recipes regularly and opt for them, instead of fried foods, processed foods, fast foods and junk food.
You should also drink more water, green tea and sugar-free fruit juices. Avoid soft drinks and sugary drinks.
You may not always have the time to eat all of the foods necessary for enhancing your immune system, so the next best thing is to take supplements that achieve similar results.
Some helpful examples of supplements that work to bolster your immune system include a daily multivitamin, vitamin C, vitamin E, astragalus, garlic, reishi mushrooms, echinacea, cat’s claw, beta glucan, colostrum and probiotics..
All of these can be purchased at any health food store. Make sure, though, that you check with your doctor before taking any supplement, if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, suffering from a chronic health problem or taking a prescription drug.
Get a Move On
Not everybody has the time, money or opportunity to join a gym, but you can be physically active, without it costing you a dime.
Exercise along with exercise programs on television, which typically last about 20-30 minutes. Just find one with a fitness level you feel comfortable with and have a daily “at-home” workout.
Even everyday physical activities, like walking, gardening, climbing stairs and the like are all forms of moderate exercise that can get you off the couch, so you can put your immune system into high gear.
Don’t Stress Out
Too much stress can have a negative effect on your health. Factors like work, family pressures, divorce, financial worries, etc., can bring on an overload of stress and actually end up suppressing your immune system.
It’s virtually impossible to avoid getting some degree of stress in today’s world, but you can learn to manage it.
When you feel yourself getting tense, do deep breathing exercises. This involves slowly inhaling through your nose and then exhaling through pursed lips. Put your hands on your abdomen to ensure that you are breathing from your belly, not from your chest. This can help diminish your level of stress and calm you down.
Do something you enjoy, such as reading, playing videos games, hanging out with supportive friends and participating in a hobby. You can also lower stress by listening to relaxing music and soaking in a hot bath with a few drops of lavender essential oil before bedtime.
Rest Is Essential
Getting enough sleep is very important to making your body strong enough to combat sickness and disease.
Experts say that you should try to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night, if possible. Realistically speaking, this may not always be possible, if you have a job schedule that requires you to work at night or you work more than one job.
You should, however, try to get at least 5 hours of good, quality sleep. If you have to sleep during the day, wear a sleep mask to block out light. Turn off your television and, if you can, put your answering machine on and turn down the volume of your phone, so that you can sleep, undisturbed.