Immunity is a BIG topic right now! Unfortunately, many people are unaware of the simple steps they can take to boost their immunity daily. At Cornerstone, we maintain strict cleaning and sanitizing standards. We also follow all state and federal guidelines with regard to disease prevention. In addition, we strongly encourage people to wash hands regularly and wipe down gym equipment before and after use. But, what can you do beyond the gym walls to help? Our team has put together a few immunity-boosting tips to help you fortify your resistance to illness today and EVERY DAY!
EXERCISE AND BOOST YOUR IMMUNITY
As most of us know, moderate levels of exercise lead to general good health. In fact, exercise may be one of the greatest “bug busters” out there. It turns out that regular moderate exercise contributes directly to the body’s immune response by enabling healthy circulation. Your immune response will be more efficient thanks to that good circulation! With that said, DON’T OVERDO IT! If your exercise sessions bring your body to exhaustion, it can hinder the immune response.
MANAGE STRESS AND IMPROVE YOUR RESISTANCE
We all have it! Whether its work demands, family obligations, or the environmental toxins that surround us, we are constantly putting stress on our bodies. The real question is – how do we deal with it? It can be as simple as a walk outside in the sunshine or something new, like a mindfulness practice. The simple truth is that recognizing, acknowledging and responding to your stress can help keep stress hormones – which suppress immune response – to a minimum.
SLEEP WELL FOR RESTORATION
Sleep is imperative to restoring your body’s immune function. Lack of sleep can affect stress hormones and alter hunger hormones, which can in turn cause you to eat less healthy foods. Practice good sleep hygiene by limiting exposure to blue light in the evenings. It is also recommended that you stick to a regular bedtime and try to stay active throughout your day. More and better sleep will boost your immunity.
The most controllable source of inflammation is your diet. For powerful a powerful immune boost, cut out highly processed foods, meat, sugar, alcohol, and vegetable oils.
Deficiencies in specific vitamins and minerals, like vitamin C, vitamin E, zinc and selenium, can hinder your first line of defense against germs. Check out the list below for some suggestions to boost your immunity:
- This one is a given, but foods high in vitamin C: Citrus foods like oranges, grapefruit, lemon and limes; kiwis, apples, berries, spinach and bell peppers
- Almonds: with big supplies of Vitamin E, this antioxidant fights off free radicals in the body
- Sweet Potatoes: High in B vitamins and the antioxidant, Vitamin A
- Pumpkin Seeds: these little dynamos are high in Zinc
- Fish: Yellowfin tuna, sardines, oysters, clams, halibut, shrimp, salmon, and crab all have good levels of selenium; Don’t eat meat? Try Brazil Nuts instead!
- Garlic: Garlic has antiviral compounds that help in fighting off infection
- Spices: They don’t just spice up your life, they add to it! Ginger, cayenne, cinnamon, oregano and turmeric. Pro tip- eat turmeric with black pepper to increase absorption!
- Dark Leafy Greens: Dark leafy greens are some of the most nutritious foods on the planet, and adding more to your diet will provide you with a host of health benefits. In addition, dark leafy greens have vitamin C, iron, folate, and vitamin A and many other beneficial vitamins and minerals.