In the current situation, it seems more dangerous to go visit a clinic for a cough or a sniffle than it is to stay home, practise social distancing, and deal with the sniffles by yourself. After all, you probably wouldn’t want to risk catching the virus on your way to the clinic and back, especially if you have vulnerable family members at home.
But what if you feel worse?
That’s why prevention is always better than cure. Instead of relying on having to go visit the doctor every time you feel unwell, it’s more advisable now more than ever to strengthen your immunity so that you don’t fall sick in the first place.
Here are 6 healthy ways to boost your immunity naturally.
1. Eat more fruits and vegetables
The key to a healthy body is a well-balanced diet. Fresh fruits and veggies are chock-full of antioxidants, vitamin A, vitamin C, and other nutrients that help give your immune system a boost.
Have you ever heard of the expression ‘eat the rainbow’? Filling your diet with fruits and veggies in all colours of the rainbow ensures that you get your daily dose of nutrients you need to stay healthy. These include lycopene from red foods, carotenoids from orange foods, bioflavonoids from yellow foods, and anthocyanins from purple foods.
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Some other foods rich in these vitamins and antioxidants include citrus fruits, green tea, ginger, garlic, and turmeric. Try our yummy and nutritious in Original, Lemongrass, and Red Dates flavours today!
2. Get enough sleep every night
Your body is an amazing machine that runs on autopilot to keep you healthy the best it can. Do it a favour by getting sufficient rest at night because that’s when your body works the hardest to repair itself, combat infections, and release wastes and toxins from the cells.
On average, an adult needs 7-9 hours of sleep every night. Go to bed before midnight and stick to a regular sleep cycle so your body knows when to start detoxifying itself each time. If you don’t get enough sleep, you’re at risk of chronic inflammation, which overstresses your immune system and puts you at a higher risk of falling sick.
3. Maintain an active lifestyle
Staying active means you’re reducing your chances of inflammation and improving the regulation for your immune system. Besides, it also has many other benefits such as delaying the negative effects of ageing, strengthening your muscles, and overall reducing the risk of illnesses.
The best part is that you don’t even need to run a marathon or do a hundred pushups to stay active. Simple exercises work too! Practice yoga. Do general stretching every day. Take the stairs instead of using the lift. Even a daily 10-minute YouTube workout at home is better than nothing.
4. Manage your stress levels
Too much stress isn’t good for health, period. If you’ve ever wondered why, it’s because your body releases a cocktail of hormones to aid in the stressful ‘fight or flight’ situation.
Hormones like cortisol, adrenaline, dopamine, and norepinephrine reduce the production of white blood cells called lymphocytes that help fight off invading bacteria. That’s why you’re always more likely to fall sick during stressful periods, especially if you’re unable to sleep well too.
5. Consume more protein
A diet rich in protein is essential for your T-cells, which is another kind of white blood cell that plays a huge role in maintaining a healthy immune system. They release antibodies to fight off viruses and bacteria to keep you safe and healthy.
On top of that, you need to make sure that you’re taking in enough zinc with your proteins because it increases the efficiency of your T-cells as well. Examples of proteins rich in zinc include oysters, red meat, chicken, crab, beans, nuts, and dairy products. Eating more of these types of foods regularly will give you a huge boost to your immunity.
6. Take your probiotics
Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that are essential for maintaining a healthy digestive system and excreting toxins and wastes from your body. On the other hand, probiotic foods balance your gut microbiome, or gut flora, that produces another type of white blood cells called cytokines to help your immune system function properly.
Naturally-occurring probiotic foods include onions, garlic, asparagus, miso, kimchi, and yoghurt (or cultured milk). There are also plenty of probiotic supplements widely available in the market for you to choose from.