You can give your body a fighting chance at warding off illness by taking better care of it. While there is no secret ingredient to boost your ability to fight off bugs, you can improve your overall well-being and health–which will, in turn, help you prevent illness.
One of the best ways to boost your immunity is through foods that contain antioxidants. When your body is fighting against infection it produces harmful free radicals. Eating foods high in antioxidants can help protect your cells from damage and boost your immunity.
Foods such as beans, blueberries, blackberries, dark chocolate, red cabbage, spinach, strawberries, walnuts, sunflower seeds, pecans, beets, plums, and artichokes are high in antioxidants. You can also eat foods that promote gut health.
Many people take prebiotic and probiotic supplements for gut health, but you can also get them naturally in certain foods. Foods that contain good bacteria such as fermented foods like yogurt, sauerkraut, kombucha, and kimchi are great sources of probiotics.
Staying away from certain foods and drinks also plays a role in keeping your immune system healthy. If you drink alcohol, do so in moderation. Stay away from foods that contain added sugar. Sugars can weaken the ability of your white blood cells to fight against bacteria and viruses.
Warding off illness involves more than just eating well. If you are a smoker, quitting can actually increase your ability to defend against infections at a cellular level. Other obvious ways to protect yourself are to get your immunization shots and wash your hands regularly. If you are not sure if you are up to date, call your doctor and get scheduled for any shots you are due for.
Exercising regularly and getting the proper amount of sleep on a daily basis also boosts your immunity. Your body also needs time to rest, during sleep time, your body goes through a vital restorative process that can help keep you well. For most adults, you should get approximately seven to nine hours of sleep per day.
Last but not least, reducing your stress is key to ensuring both your mind and body remain healthy. Exercise and sleep can help reduce stress, but if those are not enough and you are still feeling stressed out, you can read our article, How to Take Control of Managing Your Stress for more helpful tips to get you on the right path.