Your immune system is your body’s first line of defense when battling any common cold, flu, or other illnesses. For that reason, it’s a good idea to take action now to protect yourself and your loved ones during cold and flu season.
Below are some healthy living tips to boost your immune system:
· Stay hydrated. Water is essential for immune health. While other fluids may be tempting, ensure you drink at least 8-10 cups of water each day and set reminders for yourself if you struggle to remember to drink enough water throughout the day.
· Exercise and move your body regularly. Aim for at least 30 minutes a day of some type of physical activity such as running, lifting, or dancing. If mobility is limited, consider low-impact activities such as swimming, walking on an elliptical, biking, or yoga.
· Manage stress. Although easier said than done, managing stress in healthy ways is crucial to not only your mental and physical health but also to your overall sense of well-being. Some ideas are journaling, taking a walk, meditating, or engaging in physical activity.
· Get plenty of sleep. Aim for 7-9 hours of quality sleep a night. Practice proper sleep hygiene by keeping your room cool, dark, and free of distractions. Turn off the TV or other devices at least half an hour before bedtime, and engage in a relaxing or quiet activity such as a warm bath, a breathing exercise, or reading a good book until you drift off to sleep.
· Eat a balanced diet full of lean meats, whole grains, fruit, vegetables, and leafy greens.
· Stay home if you’re sick.
· Wash your hands regularly with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds.