With winter just around the corner, now is the perfect time to work on boosting your immunity and supporting your immune system.
Our immune system is incredibly complex, it contains 21 different types of cells which all have multiple functions. This uses up considerable amounts of energy when mounting a response to a bacteria or virus so giving our immune system the nutrients and support it needs to thrive is beneficial right now. Now is a great time to begin as we are also only a couple of months away from the beginning of winter, flu season and lots of other bugs that thrive in the cooler months.
Because of the complexity, our immune system could do with starting it’s support now, not once we are experiencing symptoms.
Some of the basic lifestyle approaches that support our immune function include:
1. Ensuring you are getting enough sleep.
Whilst we sleep our body is continuing to do it’s normal functioning including our immune system fighting infections. Actually, our immune system has more of an opportunity to fight infections whilst we are asleep. Ensuring we get enough sleep on a daily basis is beneficial for giving our immune system the time to do it’s magic. It is recommended that adults have between 7-9 hours every evening, however this is dependent on the individual, so work out how much is ideal for you and then try and get this every night.
2. Get out in the sun.
Make sure you are getting outdoors and soaking up some sunshine is beneficial for our immune health as we are able to convert the UV rays into vitamin D which supports our immune cells and helps protects against infection. Between now and May, we need to be out during the hours of 12 and 3 pm, for 15 minutes to absorb as much vitamin D as possible before winter hits.
3. Wash our hands.
A basic one but also an important one, ensure you are washing your hands regularly especially before eating meals or touching your face. This also leads me to trying to reduce touching your face as much as possible including rubbing your eyes to prevent transmission of infection.
4. Reduce stress.
When we are stressed, our body prioritises the stress response over our general body functioning including our immune function. Reducing stress plays a huge role on supporting our immune function. The easiest way to lower stress levels is to do something fun! For me this is tending to my garden, playing with my nephews or going hiking.
5. Exercise more.
Exercise not only releases endorphins lowering our stress levels, but it also encourages us to sweat.
Sweating is a way to eliminate toxins from our body and also through our respiratory tract through breathing. So get outside and get your seat on!
6. Open up your windows and doors.
Bugs thrive in warm moist environments (like our bodies), so ensuring our homes do not becomes breeding grounds is also important. Make sure you are regularly opening up your doors and getting fresh air into your home regularly.
If you are wanting more support with your immune health, please book in as there are lots of herbs and specific nutritional supplements that can support you to get through winter.