We’ve all heard of food and supplements to add to your diet for a stronger, healthier immune system. While many of them are incredibly effective, taking care of your body is a holistic effort. So, what are some non-diet ways to boost your immune system? We’ve done the research and will answer that question right here so you can enjoy a healthy cold and flu season.
Taking good care of your body involves more than just what you put into it. Your lifestyle choices can have a big impact on your immune system, as well. Here are three great lifestyle changes to help boost your immune system:
- Reduce stress levels
- Get lots of exercise
- Sleep at least eight hours each night
To help you get the maximum benefit of these lifestyle adjustments, we’ll explain more about each one in the rest of this article. Plus, we’ll share tips on seamlessly working them into your everyday life. So, let’s get started learning how to be healthier!
3 Non-Diet Ways To Boost Your Immune System
Although it’s often easier said than done, reducing stress can boost your immune system. Even though you can’t remove every stressful situation from your life, managing your stress effectively can still help preserve your good health. Try these tactics:
- Take time every morning or night to meditate and practice breathwork
- Go for a walk or sit in nature for at least 15 minutes each day
- Even if you’re a beginner, practice creativity through an art form, cooking, or anything else you enjoy
Get Enough Exercise
Exercise is a great way to reduce stress and boost immunity thanks to its endorphins, mood-boosting effects, and even meditative qualities. Plus, it stimulates immune cell activity, decreases inflammation, and reduces your risk of many chronic health conditions.
For general stress reduction benefits, any type of exercise, from walking to powerlifting, is effective. However, you’ll get the best immune-boosting results from moderate to vigorous exercise for at least an hour several days each week. To engage in that level of exercise, you can try jogging around 6 mph, using an elliptical, weight training, or swimming laps.
Get Plenty of Sleep
We all know that sleep is important for overall health and well-being, but did you know that it has some very specific effects on the immune system? While you’re sleeping, your body produces cytokines, which are proteins that help your body rest. However, your body needs extra amounts of particular cytokines to recover when it’s sick or injured. If you’re not sleeping enough, your body won’t have a chance to produce the necessary cytokines, and your recovery time will increase.
To help yourself get enough sleep, ensure you’re managing your stress levels, exercising, staying off screens near bedtime, and resting comfortably.
Although all of these changes can positively impact your immune system in a big way, simple things like regular hand washing are important as well. Combining these recommendations with a healthy diet will make you stay healthy and happy all winter long.