Coronavirus is spreading all over the world, and naturally, many people are worried about getting sick. In this article, we are going to cover six simple and practical ways to boost your immune system so that if you do happen to encounter the virus, your body is more resistant.
You may not get it in the first place, and if you do get it, these tips are going to help get your immune system strong, so you don’t get any of these serious complications like pneumonia.
When it comes to things like this viral pandemic, there are certain things we can’t control. Whether or not we’re exposed because coronavirus has a latent period where people show no symptoms for several weeks, so it’s spread very easily.
When the symptoms do pop up, you want to make sure your immune system is strong, so you can get better and faster healing.
We are going to give you a little plan that you can start implementing today to keep you and your family healthy.
The first and the most foundational thing when it comes to your immune system is sleep. Sleep is your body’s restoration cycle. It really helps boost your immune cells and repair damaged tissues.
When we miss sleep, our bodies have higher levels of cortisol, which suppresses your immune system.
The research studies show that people who miss sleep or chronically sleep-deprived have lower white blood cell counts.
Those immune cells that help fight the viruses, so basically, the foundation of your house is shaky if you’re missing sleep. It’s going to make it a lot more likely that if you are exposed to the virus, it actually gets into your system, get into your lungs, get into those deep receptors that it attaches to in the lungs, and you may start getting symptoms.
Sleep is foundational because when we miss sleep, cortisol and stress hormones are higher, and your immune system is lower.
On the flip side of this, if you’re relying on a lot of coffee, this increases adrenaline and noradrenaline – chemicals that are also immune suppressive. This whole thing that many people go through is where they’re missing sleep and then taking caffeine because they’re losing sleep. This entire cycle makes it a lot likely that you are going to get something like the coronavirus.
So our first recommendation to increase your sleep during this season and make it a priority. It is one of the most important things you can do.
Also, remember that stress raises the cortisol as well, and it’s going to make it more likely that your immune system is less strong, and you could get the virus.
Tip #2 Daily exercise. A lot of people are worried about staying inside and stocking up on food. Do not miss exercise because researches show that even a short 30-minute walk increases your white blood cell counts. Our bodies were built to move, particularly move outside in the sunshine. When we do our immune system goes higher, inflammation levels go lower, and that’s going to make your body more resistant and resilient.
If you feel like you don’t have the time to go into the gym and do normal workouts, which may not be the best idea right now, you can get workouts at home as well.
Exercise and sleep – these are foundations of your immune system, so make those things a priority. It is so much better if you even get 5 to 10 minutes of exercise than if you got no exercise at all.
Tip #3 is to get these key nutrients that your immune system depends on. The first one is zinc. Zinc is absolutely vital for actually the production of your immune cells because when we get infections, our zinc levels are depleted.
This is why when you see a lot of these emergency packets having vitamin C and zinc in them. Zinc is essential to get, so you should start increasing your food sources of zinc. Fish is some of the best sources of zinc. Free-range chicken, grass-fed beef, wild-caught salmon, sardines – these could be good sources of zinc.
You can get zinc from nuts, seeds, beans. You may even consider supplementing with a zinc magnesium combination. This can help keep your immune system higher, which would be a really good idea.
Vitamin C also huge it just keeps your immune system high in general. Your immune cells concentrate vitamin C. This helps them in antioxidant and cytotoxic capacities in terms of actually fighting the damaged cells infected by the virus.
Foods that are high in vitamin C are citrus fruits, like kiwis, oranges, grapefruits, but don’t forget about your vegetables such as broccoli.
When you eat that orange, for example, you’re not just getting vitamin C – you’re literally getting hundreds of different phytochemicals that work with the vitamin C that keeps your immune system high.
Just pick one vitamin C rich food that you like, whether it’s broccoli or the oranges, and incorporate into your diet and start eating it as part of your normal routine.
The next nutrient that’s absolutely essential is vitamin D3. Most people, unfortunately, do not get enough vitamin D3. We can get it from food sources, but the primary way our body actually likes to get vitamin D3 is from the sunshine.
Our skin has specialized receptors that convert sunlight through cholesterol pathways in the skin into sulfated vitamin D3, which helps boost our immune system. People who are sick tend to have lower levels of vitamin D3, so it’s a really good idea.
If you’re not supplementing right now and you know you’re not getting enough sunshine – start supplementing with vitamin d3 primarily through this season. Vitamin D3, even in high doses, can help prevent you from getting a worse cold when you are getting sick, and that actually can help cold heal faster.
The easiest way to get it is by taking a 30-minute walk in the morning or getting out in your backyard if you have one and getting your skin exposed to sunshine.
The other compound that’s really important for the key nutrient when it comes to immune-boosting is something called Indole-3-Carbinol.
It’s found in dark green leafy vegetables, like kale, chard, broccoli, and it’s amazing for regulating and boosting your immune system.
These are key nutrients you definitely want to eat more of those and get rid of the processed foods because sugar in it is what does kill your immune system. Studies show that immune cells when they’re bathed in sugar in a petri dish, act like they’re drunk. They don’t actually detect viruses and bacteria nearly as well. So if you have high sugar floating on your bloodstream all the time because you’re drinking soda and eating processed foods, your immune system will constantly be depressed.
Tip #4 is to take some antiviral supplements. The good news is that mother nature’s provided us with some amazing things that specifically fight viruses. One amazing compound is glycyrrhizin, which comes from licorice. There’s some research back when the SARS outbreak was going on (another virus in the coronavirus family) found that glycyrrhizin inhibits the replication of the SARS virus, and they think it might work for COVID-19 too.
You can take a supplement with glycyrrhizin because it also helps prevent the flu and other viruses. Although coronavirus is going around, right now a lot of people are also getting sick with flu, because we’re still on the tail end of the flu season. So getting these good broad-spectrum antivirals supplements could be a really good thing for your family.
Tip #5 is to get some immune boosters. The first thing we recommend is probiotics. If you’re not taking a good probiotic supplement, this may be the time you start right now because our entire digestive and a respiratory tract are lined with good beneficial bacteria that actually help increase our immune system. Our immune system interacts with our gut microbiome. If you have a healthy gut microbiome when you’re getting probiotics every day, your immune system is generally going to be stronger.
We also recommend that you look into fermented food that you like, whether it’s fermented sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, or fermented soy like tempeh.
Now the final tip we have for you comes down to some basic hygiene stuff. These viruses typically spread via respiratory contact droplets in the air. The number one thing that we can all do to decrease viral exposure is to wash our hands frequently and thoroughly. If you go into a public bathroom, you’ll see that a hand wash looks like this: most people just wave their hands under the sensor, get a little water on there, and they’re out in like 3-4 seconds.
We want to really encourage you to start washing your hands thoroughly for like 15-20 seconds. Basically, how long you should be washing your hands is how long it takes to sing “Happy birthday.”
Wash your hands longer, get in between the fingers, get underneath the nails, get those wrists and do a really good job sing “Happy birthday” song in your head 20 seconds that’s a good hand wash.
If you literally take one thing from this article and start implementing it, then it’s a victory for us, then reading the article made you better. But remember, that information without application and taking action is useless.