Become a superhuman with these 6 simple steps to naturally boost your immune system

   

Oneplan

    0
Superman

Fight off the flu this winter!

 

With the cold of winter taking a firm stand, there is no doubt that some of us have already been man down with the flu, a cold or worse...man flu…

A number of us are still in hope that we don’t catch that cough or slip up to those sneezes going around, but the thing is, once that nasty flu enters your household...there is no going back.

A lot of people tend to have their own sort of home remedy for combating colds and flu, some may just choose loads of rest and others pay a visit to their local pharmacy or doctor (it helps if you have health insurance for situations like these).

But, rather than having to deal with the downside to getting sick, wouldn’t it just be better if you avoided getting ill all together? Sounds too good to be true though right?

What if we told you that there are natural ways that you can come the flu-fighting superhuman you always dreamed of becoming by naturally boosting your immune system?

First things first…

 

What is your immune system?

Your immune system is one of the most important internal functions of your body as it is your body’s defense system against invading pathogens (i.e. the baddies) such as bacteria and viruses. Your immune system also reduces swelling, repairs your body and helps prevent injuries from worsening.

When bacteria, viruses, fungi or other nasty germs try to get in and make you sick, your immune system is on guard to fight these organisms off.

But, just like you work on strengthening your muscles in gym, zumba classes or whatever tickles your fitness fancy, you also need to ensure that your immune system is in tip top shape.

So, here it is:

 

6 simple steps to naturally strengthening your immune system:

1. Diet

We underestimate the power of healthy eating when it comes down to the strength of our immune systems. But what you may not know, is that the majority of the activity of your immune system takes place in your digestive system (where your body processes food and drinks) because that is how a number of threatening organisms get in - via what you eat or drink.

Your immune system will need to protect your body from any harmful agents entering through your mouth - which can be hard work!

Here are 3 foods (and a hot beverage) that help strengthen your immune system:

  1. Yoghurt - A natural probiotic, yoghurt is full of ‘good bacteria’ and contains live or active cultures which can boost your digestive health and keep your immunity strong!
  2. Garlic - Maybe those old stories of garlic keeping bad guys like vampires away had some truth to them because, as it turns out, garlic is loaded with all sorts of powerful nutrients such as allicin, which is an antioxidant that helps to stop the spread of bacteria.
  3. Chicken soup - Good for the soul and your immune system! Cooking chicken releases an amino acid known as cysteine which stop the white blood cells in your body from causing inflammation around the site of a lung infection (i.e. pneumonia results in lung inflammation). When preventing this inflammation or swelling, then it makes it easier for your body to heal the affected area and get rid of the bacteria causing the infection.
  4. Tea - That’s right - get the kettle boiling for a hot and soothing cup of tea! Both black and green tea are packed with antioxidants that help reduce the activity of harmful organisms in your body.

 

2. Exercise

You will have heard this one before, but it’s not just what you put into your body, but also how you treat it!

You might be wondering:

Why is exercise always recommended to improve my immune system?

Well, the answer is simple…

Exercise improves lymphatic functioning - big word, we know.

Basically, your lymphatic system helps get rid of toxins and keeps your immune system in great shape! When you exercise, you are keeping this lymphatic system hard at work in ridding your body of toxins, viruses, bacteria and even cholesterol.

Studies show that those who exercise report on having 23% fewer upper respiratory chest infections compared to those who don’t!

Even just a 30 minute walk a day is enough to keep you active and healthy!

 

3. Reduce stress

Easier said than done - we know!

But the thing is, chronic (i.e. long term) stress can lead to your body producing large amount of adrenaline and cortisol which are the two hormones that use a lot of your body’s energy for physical performance, also known as the instigators to your body’s fight or flight response.

These hormones are needed for situations such as accidents or having to run away from a bad situation, but too much of them will dampen the function of your immune system. Cortisol also interferes with your body’s fighter blood cells known as white blood cells or T-cells to get signals from the body. This hormone also lowers the amount of a vital anitbody which lines your respiratory tract (your airways) and your gut - which are your first line of defence against harmful agents such as bacteria.

Try stress-reducing techniques such as exercise, deep breathing, meditation, yoga or just reading a book - it really will make a big difference when it comes to fighting the flu!


4. Stop smoking (or avoid second hand smoke) and drink less alcohol

Smoking tobacco products decreases the fighter cells in your body known as antibodies which help fight off infection. People who smoke also have an increased risk of bronchitis and pneumonia. Second hand smoke is just as bad, so stay away from it if you can.

Excessive consumption of alcohol also impairs your immune system function and increases your chances of lung infections. Try to only have one or two drinks daily or over the weekend.

 

5. Spend more time catching rays

The sun is a great way for our bodies to naturally get vitamin D which is an important vitamin when it comes to our immunity and bone health.

By spending more time in the sun, you will naturally improve the strength of your immune system and it also feels great to catch some rays on our cold winter days. Experts suggest that 10 minutes of sun exposure a day without sunblock is all you need.

 

6. Catch some Zzzzzzz’s

So many of us underestimate the power of a good night’s rest. Yet, we can all agree that when we don’t get enough sleep, our bodies feel run down and we tend to get sick easier. Getting 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night can significantly improve your chances of avoiding the flu!

If you follow these 6 simple steps to become the flu-fighting, cold-bashing and sneeze-avoiding superhuman you were born to be, then you and your powerful immune system will be able to say goodbye to hah-choos and hello to health!

But, if you find yourself needing to go to the doctor a lot or want to know more about health insurance, get in touch with Oneplan to find out how our affordable healthcare can be customised just for you!


Yours in healthy heroes,

Oneplan



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