The holidays are here and so is cold and flu season. Cold and flu season typically begins in October but peaks in December and January. Now that we have officially entered cold and flu season, it’s time to think about how we can protect ourselves before we get sick. Though it might seem unavoidable, there are a few simple things we can do to help our immune systems. Here are 7 ways to help you boost your immune system this fall.
Though it might seem hard to find time to sleep, most of us could do more to prioritize it. Studies show that people who are sleeping 7-9 hours a night and receive their flu vaccine are better protected against the illness. Try to reduce distractions and time wasters so you can put yourself to bed earlier or sleep in a little later. Your body and mind will thank you.
The benefits of moderate, consistent exercise cannot be overstated. Not only does exercise help us feel better physically, improve our heart health, and boost our moods, but now we know it improves the immune system as well to help us fight off infections and illness.
3. Reduce Stress
Chronic stress causes our bodies to release hormones that make us more likely to contract diseases and can create chronic illness in our bodies. Sleeping better and exercising will help reduce your stress. So can meditation, journaling, talking to a therapist, and spending time with people you love.
Though hydration itself doesn’t necessarily decrease your risk of catching a cold, dehydration can increase your risk of becoming ill because it limits your kidney, heart, and digestive functions. If you do become ill, drinking water helps your body create mucus and makes it easier to expectorate phlegm.
5. Wash Your Hands
We have heard a lot about handwashing in the last few years. During this time of year, it is especially important to wash and sanitize your hands more frequently. Bacteria lurks on doorknobs, water faucets, and other seemingly innocuous places we touch all the time. Being careful to keep your hands clean and not to touch your face will help reduce your risk of contracting cold or flu.
6. Choose the Right Supplements
Internet ads abound for vitamin and mineral supplements that claim to protect us from all manner of illnesses. Most of these claims are unproven. There are, however, studies that suggest that Vitamins C and D, zinc, elderberry, echinacea, and garlic can help us prevent and fight infections. Be sure to check with your doctor or pharmacist for possible interactions with any medications you take before you start taking supplements.
7. Eat a Healthy Diet
Though it’s easy to place our hopes in a vitamin supplement, it really is more important to eat well to help our immune systems. Many parts of our bodies work together to fight disease, so we need to be mindful of eating for them all. That means reducing added sugar, eating healthy fats, eating fermented foods (or taking a probiotic supplement), and eating whole fruits and vegetables.
Superberries Aronia berries are an excellent addition to your daily diet because they are a rich source of antioxidants, Vitamins A, B complex, and C, zinc, potassium, iron, and magnesium. They help boost your immune system, reduce inflammation in the body, and provide your organs with the vitamins and minerals they need to function effectively. They are also so versatile that you can add them to smoothies, savory meals, desserts, and beverages. Superberries Aroniaberry Products make it easy to add Aronia berries to your diet every day.