Going back to the big bad world after months of lockdown is bound to make anyone anxious. With all the safety precautions of wearing masks and washing hands set in place, you can still never be sure that you are not compromising your health by being exposed to germs that you are no longer prepared for. Our immune systems are prone to even more fragility as the coming cold months approach and one can\’t help but wonder if our systems are in tip-top shape. Might they have \”forgotten\” how to fight viruses since being locked down for so long?
Luckily immune systems do not \”forget\” how to work. In fact as we grow older, our systems develop a much stronger army in the fight against diseases and microbes. These immune systems do need a boost though. So let\’s look at ways that can help us boost our immune system a couple of notches:
We\’ve already established that our immune systems are pretty smart, and vaccines become like the \’Jedi master\’ training them to be even smarter. Vaccines help our immune systems to quickly recognise, defend and fight off certain disease causing illnesses. With advances in technology, it is much easier and safer for your immune system to learn to fight viruses via vaccination than through infection. As winter approaches, getting your flu shot is a great way to help your system update its army. A COVID booster can also be helpful. Take advantage of new medicine, vaccines and boosters.
Eating healthy, veggie-laden home cooked meals rather than fast food and snacks is a great way to help your system out. In addition lemon, ginger and garlic became the holy grail that graced so many homes during lockdown restrictions and the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of tonics brewed from these ingredients is actually backed by decades of scientific research. These popular and commonplace ingredients have benefits that may offer some protection against disease. Incorporating foods rich in Vitamins B6 (found in chicken and green vegetables), Vitamin C (found in citrus), and Vitamin E (found in sunflower oil) also help support your immune system.
While experts believe absorbing vitamins through dietary sources is more effective than taking supplements, it can be difficult to get all the nutrients you need daily just from food. Find a good multivitamin or specialised immune booster and take one daily, especially during weather or environment changes. If you’ve recently moved from a home environment into an office environment, you’re being exposed to all manner of germs, so get the extra help to fight them off.
It\’s all about the water. Staying properly hydrated helps in important everyday functioning of the body. This includes regulating the body\’s temperature, lubricating joints and getting rid of toxins and waste, all of which helps your body stay fit and healthy. Another weapon in the immune boosting arsenal is steaming. According to researchers, the moisture of steam has been shown to help release infection fighting cells called leukocytes, which can help boost your immune system. Steam is also beneficial for your blood circulation and skin, so book that session in a steam room or sauna, or put together an old-school steaming bowl to help loosen up those sinuses.
Keep stress under control
Stress can severely damage our immune systems. It\’s best to try and reduce stress as much as possible by keeping a positive outlook and healthy mindset at all times. Interestingly, a return to the office can even help reduce stress for some, as it helps them keep work at work, allowing them to switch off and relax at home. Exercising regularly, and getting plenty of sleep are also top tier ways to destress. This in turn helps give your immune system the boost it needs to keep you healthy and safe.
A healthy immune system is a team effort, using building blocks from all of the above aspects to create an all-round germ-fighting army. But even the smallest effort can make an impact.
Remember, your health comes first!