As the coronavirus spreads, we are hearing about how to reduce exposure and take care of ourselves if we get sick. These are important tips, but we’re not hearing much about how we can boost our immunity so that if we do get exposed to the virus—or worse, we get sick—our body can effectively fight back.
Our immune systems are designed to fight off illnesses and viruses. But unfortunately, the immune system can get worn down by many things typical of a modern life—for example, stress, toxins, lack of exercise, and unhealthy eating. This prevents our bodies from effectively fighting off sickness.
With coronavirus all over the world, it’s more important than ever to support the immune system. We can do this by making a few key tweaks to our thoughts, actions, and habits.
Here are 6 essential ways to boost your immunity in preparation for coronavirus:
1. Reduce Stress
When you’re stressed out your body produces stress hormones which tax the immune system. So one of the most important ways to boost immunity is to reduce stress. To reduce stress, it’s key to ensure you have decent work-life balance, take breaks when you need them (both short “water-cooler” breaks and longer vacations), and to employ some calming or relaxing stress-reduction techniques, like mindfulness. And if you’re already feeling really burned out, taking adrenal support supplements like Ashwagandha can sometimes be helpful.
2. Sleep whenever you’re tired
Many of us walk around this world in a state of constant exhaustion. But every time we stay awake when our bodies want us to sleep, we increase stress and hurt our immunity. If we’re drinking caffeinated drinks all the time (e.g., coffee, black tea, soda) we may not even realize just how tired we really are. Because sleeping is essential to rebuilding a struggling immune system, we need to let ourselves sleep as much as we need.
3. Consume immunity-boosting vitamins
To support your immune system, you can eat immunity supporting foods like citrus fruits, garlic, broccoli, and spinach. If your immune system is already weak, it can also be helpful to supplement with key vitamins and minerals that may have become depleted like Vitamin C, Vitamin B, Vitamin D, and Zinc.
4. Reduce Inflammation
Sugar, processed meat, vegetable oils, and alcohol tend to be inflammatory foods so they busy the immune system, leaving other problems in your body unaddressed. That’s why it can be really helpful to remove these inflammatory foods if we want a healthy immune system.
5. Exercise, but not too much
Exercise can be one of the best things to do to boost immunity. But we have to be careful because too much exercise is stressful on the body and can be tough on our immune system. So just keep the other tips in mind: Keep stress low, and if you’re tired, rest.
6. Stay away from toxins
Toxins can be devastating for the immune system. For example, mycotoxins from mold are notorious for destroying the immune system. Many other toxins and parasites seem to have negative effects on immunity as well. So do a parasite cleanse and minimize exposure to chlorinated drinking water, pesticides, aromatic hydrocarbons (e.g., air fresheners), heavy metals, air pollution, and food additives.
By taking these actions, we can help prevent ourselves and our loved ones from suffering significantly from the coronavirus.