The outbreak of the coronavirus has seen a sharp increase in the sales of immunity boosters including Vitamin-C, zinc supplements, and ayurvedic products that claim to boost the immune system. There is no definite cure for coronavirus as doctors and scientists are trying hard to find a way out that could save millions of lives. The working of the immune system means much more than popping a few pills which is much more than spending thousands of rupees in buying pills and ayurvedic supplements that make tall claims of strengthening your immune system.
What exactly is our immune system?
The immune system is a complex interlinked network of antibodies, cells, chemicals, and organs that play a crucial role in keeping away pathogens and fighting any kind of infection that threatens your body. This shield called the immune system identifies the foreign invaders and flushes them out of the system. Our immune system is not linear which is why it is important to understand that investing in thousands of pills might not exactly, boost or support our defense.
Your immune system is your army
Your immunity is your army that fights infections coming to your way and wards them off, which is why you give proper training for it to perform when the need arises. You cannot expect the soldiers of your army to win a battle by just providing them with ammunition a night before. This is how why you need to train your immune system to tackle pathogens that invade your body.
We are listing down three ways which can develop a holistic approach to help your immunity:
Correct your sleep cycle
This is the most common advice we get and one of the most important steps towards boosting your immunity, the good old way of sleeping, working out regularly, and leading a stress-free life can do wonders in making you a healthier person. The first step is to make sure that you are getting a sound and undisturbed sleep of 6 to 7 hours every night and wake up feeling refreshed which is the best way to start your day. If your sleep cycle is disturbed, do make sure to follow the correct sleeping routine on weekends and get at least 30 minutes of morning light to correct your circadian rhythm. Even if you were to lose four hours of sleep even for just 1 day, your body’s natural killer cells dip down by 70 percent. 6-8 hours of sleep will help build your immunity, lack of it can impair brain activity and harm it.
Find ways to reduce stress
Our greatest aim in these trying times is to cut down on stress. Our hectic lifestyles will not allow us to eliminate stress which is why we must know how to manage it. We all must learn coping mechanisms to manage the stress and keep away the negative situations. When you are stressed out or battling the blues, your body releases cortisol to help you strengthen you for a fight and flight scenario. An increased amount of stress increases inflammatory activity which is not good for your health. As a result, your immune system takes a beating, and its ability to fight pathogens get reduced. On days when you are overwhelmed, try writing down everything which is of top-most priority and must be executed immediately. Don’t be stuck in the past or think too much about the future, which are situations that you cannot control. Don’t try to do everything at once and divide your work by prioritizing it.
Choose your workout routine based on what your body needs
A good diet should be followed by an exercise routine. Remember to exercise regularly, even light exercise will help you to release toxins from your body. Often we resort to taking an extreme approach when it comes to exercising, thus straining our bodies and causing them injury. We struggle to find a balance and either work out too hard to make up for our sedentary lifestyle or continue sitting in our chairs for long periods. Both of these practices can wreak havoc on your body and weaken your immune system. Learn to strike a balance when it comes to your workout routine. Listen to your body and make sure that you do not stress it out to cause harm to your body. Do a low-impact exercise if you are feeling tired and if you are bursting with energy push yourself to do exercises that allow you to spend more energy.
Make sure that you do not eat processed foods and reduce sugar and salt in your diet. Consume whole plant-based foods. Vitamin C rich foods can keep the immune system functional and healthy. Include Omega 3 fatty acids by including nuts and seeds in your diet.
Bringing lifestyle and dietary changes can strengthen your immune system. This includes reducing sugar and salt intake, getting adequate exercise, getting adequate sleep, and managing stress levels. These important steps reinforce the body’s defenses against pathogens, thus helping your body to ward off illnesses.