Our top immune-boosting tips
As we head into winter, catching a cold or coming down with the flu may feel inevitable. No one enjoys sniffing, snivelling and spluttering - it’s not a great way to make friends or impress your colleagues and it leaves you feeling pretty rough. So, we’re here with our top tips on protecting your immune system so you can feel great all year round.
DON'T SKIP YOUR LIE IN
Getting enough sleep is essential for fighting infections and illnesses. It’s now widely accepted that people who don’t get enough sleep are more vulnerable to getting sick. This should be an easy step, a perfect excuse to get into bed a little earlier every evening and wake up a little later in the morning.
Eating healthily doesn’t mean only eating fruit, veg and rye bread. It’s getting your healthy fats from avocado, nuts and olive oil, it’s getting your protein from beans, lentils and tofu AND it’s getting enough carbohydrates. Don’t class foods as ‘good’ or ‘bad’, just fuel your body with the right nutrients and eat the foods you enjoy (we would suggest a post-meal H!P snack). Our favourite immune-boosting foods are: ginger, spinach, almonds, turmeric, kiwis and a lot of water.
Physical activity is healthy for a number of reasons. Crucially, it's a vital part of supporting a healthy immune system. You don’t have to run 10k every day - 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day (this includes a brisk walk) is all you need to keep fit and ward off the common cold.
It may sound counterintuitive - why go in the cold to avoid a cold? But getting outside and finding a boost of Vitamin D works wonders for your body. Fresh air increases the amount of oxygen in your body, which helps white blood cells to function more efficiently, strengthening the immune system.
We know this is easier said than done: it’s the equivalent of someone telling you to calm down when you’re angry. But, it’s important to identify when you’re feeling stressed, knowing why you’re feeling stressed and developing habits that help reduce stress like meditation, prayer and self-care. Be a bit nicer to yourself. Your immune system will thank you.