Colder weather will soon arrive, and you want to prepare your body ahead of time so that you won’t get sick this winter. Check out these common home remedies to boost your immune system.
Sleep, Sleep, Sleep
You need to make sure you’re giving your body enough rest. Sleep and the immune system are closely tied. Poor-quality sleep or an inadequate amount of sleep is linked to a higher chance of becoming sick. Getting the right amount of rest may strengthen your immunity naturally.
If you’re having trouble falling asleep, limit the use of electronic devices before bed—they could be disrupting your circadian rhythm. Also, make sure you’re going to sleep at the same time every night and sleeping in a dark room or using a sleep mask.
Eat Whole-Plant Foods
To give yourself the upper hand to fight harmful pathogens, eat more whole-plant foods, such as vegetables, legumes, fruits, nuts, and seeds. These foods are abundant in nutrients and antioxidants. Antioxidants reduce the inflammation in your body; health conditions such as heart disease, certain cancers, and Alzheimer’s are linked to chronic inflammation.
These foods are also rich in vitamin C and fiber, which can fight the common cold and lower your risk of getting sick in the first place.
Engage in Exercise
Moderate exercise seems to be the sweet spot to boosting that immune system. Regularly exercising may reduce inflammation and help your immune cells consistently regenerate. A few examples of moderate exercise include:
- A brisk walk
- A light jog
- Steady bicycling
- A light hike
Aiming for at least 150 minutes of exercise per week is best for most people.
Preventing dehydration is critical for your overall health and wellness. Dehyrdration can cause headaches, possibly affecting your mood and preventing you from exercising. It can also affect your digestion, heart and kidney function, and focus. These issues could increase your chances of falling ill. Be sure to drink enough fluid daily that your urine is a pale yellow.
One thing to note is that older adults often lose the urge to drink, so they won’t know when they’re thirsty. Make sure your older loved ones are regularly drinking.
Supplement with Supplements
The following supplements may boost your immune system:
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin D
You want to be sure you trust the vitamins you’re taking. Supplements are susceptible to mislabeling because the FDA does not regulate them, so be sure to purchase ones that a third party has tested. You can also stick with more natural solutions: for example, there are some great recipes out there for homemade elderberry syrup.
Fermented Foods or Probiotics
Another common home remedy to boost your immune system is eating fermented foods. Fermented foods, which include yogurt, kefir, natto, sauerkraut, and kimchi, contain beneficial bacteria called probiotics. If you don’t care for the taste of these foods, you can also take a probiotic supplement. Good gut bacteria allows the body to distinguish between normal cells and harmful invaders.