With the Covid-19 pandemic spreading like wildfire globally, the thoughts in people’s minds are “how do we keep ourselves from being infected?”
The answer, a strong and healthy immune system. Basic hygiene is also important, but that topic has been covered many times by others.
- Healthy Diet
A good mix of highly nutritious foods is no brainer. The human body needs proper nutrients to sustain itself and keep it at an optimal state.
The fist thing in mind are plant-based foods. Fruits and vegetables along with herbs and spices will keep your immune system in tip top shape.
Clove, oregano, thyme, cinnamon and cumin are examples of herbs and spices that are antiviral and antibacterial in nature. Luckily for you, these go well with many foods you eat.
Furthermore, the zinc, folate, iron, selenium, copper, and vitamins A, C, E, B6, and B12 you get from the food you eat are the nutrients your immune system needs to do its job, according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Each one plays a unique role in supporting immune function.
The immune system relies on foods rich in zinc, folate, selenium, copper, and vitamins A, E, B6 and B12.
Some people will say that vitamin C is crucial and we need plenty of it, but the fact is overconsumption of vitamin C becomes toxic to our system as we can’t go beyond a certain limit.
Foods rich in protein like meat is crucial because the amino acids found their protein is critical for your immune system. It builds and maintains the immune cells, which determines whether it can fight disease or not.
Chicken, beef, and fish are excellent sources of protein that comes along with other vitamins to boost your immune system
- Control your stress
It’s a well-known fact that stress will eventually kill you. For a better explanation, it’s the stress hormone, cortisol, that’s released during stressful times.
Cortisol has the ability to prevent the immune system from doing its job during stressful moments. That’s why its easier to get sick during these times.
Meditation, frequent exercise or even just talking to your friends about your problem will help regulate your stress levels. I say regulate because its impossible to completely get rid of stress.
- Get Plenty of Good Quality Sleep
Your body heals and regenerates while you sleep, making adequate sleep critical for a healthy immune response, Lin says.
Sleep determines how you function during the day time, how much you heal, and how much your muscles recover from a hard day’s work.
But most importantly, sleeping induces the body to produce immune cells like cytokines, T cells and interleukin 12.
Take note that lack of sleep increases your stress or cortisol levels. Call it a reverse effect.
- Exercise Regularly (Outdoors, When Possible)
Exercise keeps the body fit and reduces the chance of getting sick. This is because of the release of endorphins after a workout which reduces your stress levels.
Also, the vitamin D you get from sunlight helps your immune system to be better.
Sunshine also boosts vitamin D in the body, which plays a key role in immune health, too.
- Quit smoking and drink responsibly
It’s a known fact that smoking leads to death. There’s even article that says smoking is a cause of depression, which also could lead to death.
The nicotine and other chemicals from smoking will clog up your lungs, as once you inhale the smoke it sticks onto your lungs. This definitely leads to breathing problems, when that happens your cells, including your immune cells, won’t get enough oxygen.
Drinking is less severe, however over drinking will damage your liver, which is a vital organ to clean your blood. Dirty blood attracts diseases more, forcing your immune system to work over time.
- Keep Symptoms of Chronic Conditions Under Control
Asthma, heart disease, and diabetes are chronic conditions that determines the effectiveness of your immune system.
Let’s use type 2 diabetes for an example. If the blood sugar is regulated properly, this will create a low-grade inflammatory reaction, ultimately weakening the body’s immune system.
25th March 2020 22:40
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