If you’ve made it this far into the winter without getting sick yet, congratulations. But you’re not out of the clear just yet. And the best thing you can do to prevent catching a cold or the flu is to boost your immunity. Here are some natural ways to help your immune system help you stay healthy.
Eat your antioxidants - A healthy immune system works best when it’s getting a balanced mix of minerals and vitamins over time, according to the Cleveland Clinic. So you’re better off eating immune-boosting foods like almonds, ginger, broccoli, and sweet potatoes regularly to help your immune system function at its best.
Take probiotics - Research shows certain probiotics can boost the body’s immune function and lower the chance of catching the common cold. Dr. Frank Lipman advises taking a probiotic with 10-20 billion organisms, like Culturelle capsules.
Say no to stress - Eliminating stress from your life is easier said than done, but it could help keep you healthy. One study has found that psychological stress affects how well your body regulates inflammation and can lead to disease.
Skip antibacterial soap - Washing your hands is a great way to keep germs away, but you don’t need those harsh antibacterial soaps to do it. Those products can actually increase the risk of creating resistant bacteria and they can dry your skin out more, leaving it cracked and easier to transmit a virus. So you’re better off just washing with regular old soap.
Sweat it out - A regular sweat sesh can help your body get rid of toxins. According to Dr. David Williams, the heat you generate while exercising can kill pathogens, at the same time it’s “energizing your cells and metabolism for improved health.”
Hit the hay - You know how important getting enough quality sleep is, but when you’re trying for a healthy immune system, it’s crucial. The experts at the Mayo Clinic report that those of us who don’t get enough sleep are more likely to get sick after being exposed to a virus. And not getting enough shut-eye can slow down your recovery too. So go to bed earlier already!