I’m going to say the C word…
Yes, I know we’re all tired of hearing about it and hoping that it will somehow vanish. But, unfortunately it is still a part of our daily reality. But, the COVID-19 Pandemic isn’t the only threat to our health and immunity. That’s why it’s so important to educate ourselves and advocate for our health and wellbeing. Contrary to what you may think, doing so does not have to be a chore. There are plenty of ways to boost your immunity that cost little to nothing AND doesn’t involve an intense regimen. In this article we will explore the multitude of ways you can take care of yourself and others.
The Importance of Immunity
The immune system has a vital role: It protects your body from harmful substances, germs and cell changes that could make you ill. It is made up of various organs, cells and proteins. As long as your immune system is running smoothly, you don't notice that it's there.
Easy Ways to Boost Your Immune System
1. No Smoking
Smoking tobacco is known to compromise the equilibrium of the immune system. Smoking increases the risk of many diseases and autoimmune disorders.
2. Eat More Fruits and Veggies
If you’re looking to prevent colds, the flu, coronavirus, and other infections, the grocery store is a great place to begin. Citrus fruits, red bell peppers, broccoli, garlic, ginger, spinach, yogurt, and so many other foods are great to keep your immune system running in tip-top shape!
3. Only Drink Alcohol in Moderation
Research has shown that high doses of alcohol can suppress the immune system's natural functions. Because of this suppression to the immune system, the body may take longer to recognize and respond to a developing infection. This can make infection symptoms last longer and become more intense. In severe cases, the body’s immune system may not be strong enough to overcome the infection. When this occurs, the infection may continue to develop until it becomes dangerous or is treated with antibiotics.
4. Get Enough Sleep
Sleep is one of the most underrated ways to stay healthy, both mentally and physically.
During sleep, your immune system releases proteins called cytokines, some of which help promote sleep. Certain cytokines need to increase when you have an infection or inflammation, or even when you're under stress. Sleep deprivation may decrease the production of these protective cytokines and cause the body to go into overdrive.
5. Wash Your Hands Thoroughly
This message is constantly being ingrained into us, especially now due to the ongoing pandemic. Traces of germs, including bacteria and viruses, can be transferred through hand contact, such as touching your eyes, mouth, or nose or by consuming food that has not been handled properly. Washing your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds removes these threats and protects your health.
6. Take Probiotics and Other Supplements
Probiotics can inhibit the growth of harmful gut bacteria. Also, some probiotics have been shown to promote the production of natural antibodies in the body. There are natural probiotics such as yogurt and fermented foods, or tablets/capsules that you can take. There are a variety of vitamins that may assist in immunity, such as, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin A, vitamin D, Iron, and Zinc. Always speak to your doctor before adding supplements to your daily diet.
7. Stay Hydrated
Having enough water throughout each day is essential to maintaining good health and immunity. Water helps flush out toxins and gives your internal organs the power to perform. We should all aim to intake 8-10 glasses of water a day.
8. Avoid Unfiltered Tap
As previously stated in our last point, it is essential to stay hydrated. But, the type of water that you drink has a huge effect. Drinking unfiltered water can greatly affect your immune system. There are certain contaminants and dangerous compounds that live in your water supply. To name a few, there can be traces of chlorine, arsenic, lead, and mercury. Exposure to certain contaminants in tap water can pose a risk to your immune system. For example, Perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) are man-made chemicals that can get into bodies of water that are connected to public water supplies. If someone drinks water containing PFCs, it can decrease his or her immune cell population greatly.
Read more about the possible contaminants in your tap water here: https://kleenatap.com/top-10-contaminants-in-tap-water/
9. Avoid Bottled Water
Do you know exactly what’s in a plastic bottle of water? I do, and it’s quite disturbing. A study published in 2018 by Frontiers in Chemistry sampled 259 bottles of water sold internationally and concluded that 93% of them contained microplastics. Microplastics, aka synthetic polymer particles, are harmful to both your body and the environment. Microplastic particles can also accumulate polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), which are chemicals linked to cancers, weakened immune systems, reproductive problems, and much more. Not to mention, Bisphenol A (BPA) which is found in polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins can also be found in some water bottles.
Read more about why you should ditch bottled water here: https://kleenatap.com/why-you-need-to-ditch-bottled-water/
10. Manage Stress in a Healthy Way
Stress is the immune system’s biggest threat. When we're stressed, the immune system's ability to fight off antigens is substantially reduced. That is why we are more susceptible to recurring infections. The stress hormone corticosteroid can suppress the effectiveness of the immune system because it lowers the number of lymphocytes which are needed to fight viruses.
During stressful times...
-Make time for relationships and socializing. It’s important to stay connected.
-Silence negative self-talk.
-Get some fresh air and sunlight.
-Go for a walk and move your body.
-Reduce caffeine and alcohol intake.
-Write it out and journal.
-Take a yoga class.
-Meditate and practice mindfulness.
The bottom line is…
It is so important to support your immune system. When we do what we can to take care of ourselves, we lead much happier and productive lives.
Kleenatap is here to help. Check out our affordable water filtration systems that can assist in keeping you healthy and happy! https://kleenatap.com/products/all-products/