The immune system is the body’s first line of defence against disease and infection. Without it, we would be vulnerable to even the slightest illness. Our immune system is not invincible and can be weakened, which is why it is important to safeguard your immune system and protect yourself from damage.
If you need us to tell you that smoking is bad for you, that those midweek pints are bad for you, or that your Maccas drive-thru feast is bad for you, then you’re looking in the wrong place. We don’t need to tell you that. You already know that.
Let’s take a look at six ways that you can boost your immune system this winter and keep the bugs at bay. It’s simple. If you care about your health, you will follow them. None of these are hard. None of these require drastic changes. Take control and safeguard your immune system.
What you eat is fuel. If you want to perform like a Formula 1 car, eat healthy. If you’re happy performing like a beat-up 80’s Honda, keep enjoying those greasy nuggets and processed snacks. So if you’re searching ‘how to boost immune system naturally’ then a healthy diet will almost always be the place to start.
Nutrition impacts your immune system by affecting your microbiome, gut barrier function, inflammatory process, and white blood cell function. An unhealthy diet is full of refined carbs, added sugars, saturated fats and calories. If this is your diet, you’re going to experience adverse symptoms. Ultra-processed diets are loaded with high levels of added sugar, which can cause inflammatory responses within your immune system. A diet like this can also interfere with the function of protective immune cells (Kubala, J. 2021).
Basically, a diet filled with fast food, soft drink, candy, sugary cereals and baked goods will cause a negative response. You will also experience issues with your gut bacteria, including symptoms like bloating. Your gut microbiome is essential to your immune health, and your gut bacteria is vital in the overall development and function of your immune system. If you’re consuming a diet high in saturated fats, that gut bacteria may be modified, and not in a good way (Kubala, J. 2021).
Improve your immune system with the right foods. Here are some examples of foods to boost the immune system (Schend, J. 2023):
- Citrus fruits: They deliver vitamin C, which is known to build up your immune system
- Broccoli: Loaded with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants
- Ginger: Can decrease inflammation and inflammatory illness
- Spinach: High in vitamin C, antioxidants and beta-carotene, which help to fight infection
- Yoghurt: Can support immune system defence and contains vitamin D
- Almonds: Loaded with vitamins and healthy fats
- Turmeric: Highly concentrated in curcumin, which can support immunity
- Green Tea: A type of antioxidant that is high in EGCG, which can support immune function
The importance of physical activity and exercise cannot be overstated. Get stuck in and take care of your body.
Regular training lowers the risk of developing chronic diseases and protects your body against viral and bacterial infections. Exercise increases the release of endorphins, which plays a role in reducing stress. Both of these factors are critical in fortifying and improving your immune response (Bedosky, L. 2021).
Regular exercise can help your immune system build strength, sending immune cells throughout your body to hunt down damaged or infected cells. So, what is the best exercise to boost immune immune system? Getting at least two and a half hours of moderate aerobic exercise per week can drastically improve your immune response. It’s as easy as taking a walk or a run (Bedosky, L. 2021). Stop coming up with excuses.
Think about it. How often do you see fitness enthusiasts getting sick compared to your everyday couch potato? Prepare your immune system by preparing your body.
Get off your phone and go to sleep. When you wake up sneezing, blame that late night watching Netflix. What you’re doing on your phone at 10pm doesn’t matter. Save it for the morning.
The truth about boosting your immune system is that poor sleep leads to higher vulnerability when it comes to sickness.So, why is sleep important for the immune system? Getting enough sleep is essential in strengthening your immunity, with adults who sleep less than six hours a night more likely to fall ill. You should aim for more than seven hours of sleep each night and limit screen time before bed. What you’re watching on Tik Tok is not as important as you think it is (unless of course you’re watching our hilarious ASN Support Office pranks).
Getting enough quality sleep is essential for maintaining a healthy immune system. When you sleep, your body can repair itself and fight off infections and inflammation. Lack of sleep, on the other hand, can suppress the immune response, leaving you more vulnerable to illnesses like the flu or the common cold (Fletcher, J. 2023).
Stress is not just a mental issue—it can severely impact our physical health as well. Studies have shown that high levels of stress can weaken our immune system and make us more susceptible to illness. Stress and the immune don’t gel. So if you want to keep your body healthy and robust, it’s time to start finding ways to reduce stress in your life.
Stress triggers the sympathetic nervous system, which releases hormones as a survival instinct. These hormones work to release the ‘fight or flight’ response. Epinephrine (Adrenaline) and Norepinephrine (Noradrenaline) are two hormones released immediately in response to stress, with the former producing metabolic changes like raised heart rate, blood pressure and increased blood sugar levels. These hormones alter the function of the immune system and can affect sleep and reduce immune response (Mustafa, Z. 2022).
One way to protect your immune system is by staying hydrated. When you’re dehydrated, your body doesn’t function at its best, which makes it easier for viruses, bacteria, and other harmful invaders to take hold. If you want to protect your immune system, drink plenty of water each day. It’s not hard.
Protecting yourself against dehydration is crucial in maintaining your immune health and safeguarding yourself against sickness. Dehydration can negatively impact your performance, focus, mood, kidney function, gut health and immunity. The more you exercise, the more water you will need, but it is essential to drink enough water each day to protect your overall health (Shoemaker, S. 2020).
Stop looking for the next trendy health drink and fill up a glass of water. It has zero calories, zero fats, zero sugars and zero additives. Just drink it.
Your immune system is the key to fighting off illness and disease. But sometimes, it needs extra help to stay resilient. That’s where supplements come in. With the right combination of vitamins and minerals, you can give your immune system the support it needs to ward off infections and keep you feeling healthy. Whether you’re looking for a boost during cold and flu season or want to protect yourself from chronic conditions, supplements can be a powerful tool in your health arsenal.
At Evolve, we’re not just here to preach BS advice. We’re here to deliver solutions, and that includes supplements to boost the immune system.
Immunity does exactly what you think it does and is an industry leader for all-round immune support. This formula boasts clinical levels of vitamins to boost your immune system including vitamins C and D3, Zinc, L-Glutamine, Colostrum, Black Elderberry Extract, and Echinacea. It offers the perfect everyday solution for those seeking better health and functionality.
Green Machine is an all-in-one super greens powder packed with a multivitamin complex and Apple Cider Vinegar to support your immune system. It contains a comprehensive blend of greens, nutrients and Omega-3 fats to help you stay healthy and energised.
If you want to optimise your gut health, Gut Instinct can help you to maintain your gut and support your immune system. By reducing inflammation and supporting nutrient absorption, its benefits extend beyond improving gut function as it supports crucial functions throughout the rest of your body.
THE BOTTOM LINE
If you want to safeguard your immune system against sickness, particularly during winter, it’s time to take a proper look at how you care for your body. Fix your diet, fix your training, fix your recovery and take care of yourself. Your immune system can’t protect itself if you’re getting on the piss three nights a week. Focus up, make some sacrifices and fortify your health. No excuses.
For further information and education, chat with our knowledgeable team members at Evolve Nutrition today or reach out online for additional support.
Kubala, J. 2021, ‘How and why does diet influence immune function?’ Medical News Today, accessed 21 June 2023, https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/how-and-why-does-diet-influence-immune-function\
Schend, J. 2023, ‘15 Foods That Boost the Immune System’, Healthline, accessed 21 June 2023, https://www.healthline.com/health/food-nutrition/foods-that-boost-the-immune-system
Fletcher, J. 2023, ‘Why sleep is essential for health’, Medical News Today, accessed 21 June 2023, https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/325353
Shoemaker, S. 2020, ‘9 Ways to Boost Your Body’s Natural Defences’, Healthline, accessed 21 June 2023, https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/how-to-boost-immune-health
Bedosky, L. 2021, ‘8 Ways to Keep Your Immune System Healthy’, Everyday Health, accessed 21 June 2023, https://www.everydayhealth.com/healthy-living/ways-to-keep-your-immune-system-healthy/