Try these simple Holistic Lifestyle Changes to Help Boost Your Immunity This Season to keep you healthy, happy, and safe from the inside out starting with good nutrition and self-care practices.
Food & Lifestyle Changes to Help Boost Immunity
-A guest blog written by my intern, Brittany Blanco
Ladies and gentlemen, it’s that time of year again.
The infamous domino effect of one person getting sick and everyone around them catching it soon after is here.
Why is that once we hear of a co-worker, friend or relative being under the weather, we do everything in our power not to become infected at the last minute?
Learn how to use these simple holistic healthcare practices to keep from catching the cold, before it catches you!
Lifestyle Habits that Can Boost the Immune System
Many may be running to the pharmacy aisle to load up on products that promise to keep your immune system strong, but there are plenty of natural, and cost-effective, habits that can keep you in good health BEFORE you get sick.
Eat A Diet Rich in Fruits and Vegetables
You’re probably not shocked. You hear over and over again to load up on fruits and veggies because of their ample health benefits and it’s the truth!
The nutrients in these foods nourish the immune system so that it can function effectively. We’ll get into specific fruits and vegetables that boost the immune system a little later.
Schedule in a Good Workout
Yes, exercising regularly can also benefit the immune system. Eating well and exercising go hand-in-hand, so there’s no escaping this component.
Studies have shown that individuals who live a sedentary lifestyle are more prone to getting a cold, or other
Get a Good Night’s Sleep
I don’t understand how people do it. I can’t seem to stay up late without my eyelids closing on me whether I want them to or not. When the body is sleep deprived, it releases the hormone cortisol.
Many of you may be familiar with the fact that this hormone doesn’t do the body any good. Chronic elevation of cortisol decreases the efficiency of the immune system.
Wash Your Hands (Seriously)
Practicing this daily task can prevent the transfer of illnesses onto ourselves and yet so many refuse to listen. We’ve seen the posters and signs on proper handwashing but somehow it cannot be emphasized enough.
The FDA states that using plain soap and water will get the job done. If these are not available, hand sanitizer can serve as an alternative. However, don’t rely on anti-bacterial products too much because bacteria can become resistant.
Effor to Reduce Stress
A healthy lifestyle isn’t only comprised of a well-rounded diet and exercise. Managing stress is extremely important because it keeps the not-so-good inflammation in the body at bay.
Once stress becomes chronic or long-term, the levels of the hormone cortisol increase in the body and may impair immune system function.
Foods that Boost the Immune System
Citrus Fruits for Immunity
You may have been taught that orange juice was the go-to drink for when you’re sick, and that’s not far from the truth.
Citrus fruits contain a good amount of vitamin C. Vitamin C can help increase white blood cell counts naturally and these cells protect our body from infections. It may also help decrease the duration of the common cold.
Try This Recipe: Mandarin Orange & Rosemary Hot Toddy
Boost your immune system with all-natural ingredients like mandarin oranges, rosemary and honey with this soothing, comforting drink – alcohol optional.
Probiotics for Immunity
This breakfast bowl looks fancy but is nothing more than yogurt and fruit put together with a little creativity. The foundation of this breakfast is plain Greek yogurt which is packed with protein and free of both artificial sweeteners and refined sugars.
Plus this bowl is packed with nutrition and immune boosting ‘superfoods’ that are high in vitamins, minerals & antioxidants. One serving of this bowl provides your body with 28 grams of protein, dietary fiber, and healthy omega 3′s to keep you full all morning long.
This quick & easy to make Immune Boosting Tropical Breakfast Bowl is packed with nutrition from immune-boosting superfoods that are high in vitamins, minerals & antioxidants and good-for-you probiotics.
Garlic for Immunity
Not only is eating garlic recommended for an upset stomach, but it’s a popular home remedy for the common cold. The main active ingredient, allicin, is produced when garlic is crushed or chewed and produces germ-fighting properties.
Dark Berries for Immunity
These fruits contain good amounts of flavanols; a type of antioxidant that can boost the immune system. In addition, berries contain Vitamin C.
This Berry Quinoa Breakfast Bowl is a naturally vegan and gluten-free power bowl that has 17 grams of plant-based protein and all of the nutrients your body needs to stay full and focused all morning long.
Fish and Seafood for Immunity
Including fish in your diet increases intake of zinc and omega-3’s which can help improve immune system function.
Zinc is essential for the normal development of healthy functioning cells and aids in fighting off bacteria and viruses. Omega-3’s, found in higher amounts in fatty fish, help increase the functioning of white blood cells which protect the immune system.
Cooking Baked Fish en Papillote in Foil Packets is the easiest and most delicious, fool-proof way to cook fish perfectly – every single time. This method is easily customizable and can be used for baking any of your favorite fish recipes.
Chocolate for Immunity
Being a chocolate-lover may have an advantage here. Chocolate contains cocoa which has shown to strengthen the immune system. Cocoa is rich in antioxidants.
Like your chocolate bitter?
Dark chocolate contains a good amount of zinc which as discussed previously, it aids in the normal development of cells and fights off foreign invaders.
As you can see, fueling your immune system doesn’t have to come in the form of pills. Food is medicine. I’ve given you a glimpse of some foods that provide immune-supporting properties, but there are a lot of other foods out there that can benefit your body as well. That is why a diet filled with a variety of foods is always encouraged.
Make your next special occasion a little more elegant with these Edible Rose Petal Chocolate Covered Strawberries that are vegan, gluten-free, and ready in less than 5 minutes.
Hey! I’m Brittany Blanco. I was born and raised in Northern Virginia. I am a recent graduate of Radford University with a bachelor’s degree in nutrition and Dietetics and am currently working in school nutrition. I plan on doing my dietetic internship soon with my field of interest still up for debate– the possibilities are endless. When I’m not busy with work, I’m most likely sipping on bubble tea or stocking up on skincare products. I love to travel, especially to visit my family in Mexico and stuff my face with my grandparent’s delicious Mexican cuisine.
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Hi there, I’m Emily Kyle, a nationally recognized media dietitian & nutrition communications expert on a mission to help you create the happy & healthy holistic lifestyle you deserve. To help you on your wellness journey, I offer holistic health counseling and resources that focus on holistic health & wellness, anti-inflammatory, whole food recipes, and my love for gardening inside #TheMillennialGarden.