How to optimize immunity to mitigate illness
It is cold and flu season and this year we are facing what many have called a “tripledemic,” RSV, flu, and COVID. It might not be possible to completely avoid illness, but we can take precautions to keep ourselves as healthy as possible.
We have several layers of immunity, these include
· Innate immunity
o Skin, mucous, white blood cells, stomach acid, etc.
· Acquired immunity
o Antigens developed through exposure, such as through vaccination and previous illness
Optimal immune function depends on many factors, and basic wellness practices are a great place to start
· Eat the rainbow
o Eating a variety of brightly colors fruits and vegetables can help ensure you are getting the proper nutrients to keep your body and white blood cells function optimally.
· Stay well hydrated
o Depending on body size and activity level it is recommended to drink 9-13 cups of water daily (National Academy of Medicine). Try drinking water throughout the day to keep your cells operating optimally.
· Balance your stress load
o Try including calming and uplifting activities in your day such as meditation and breathwork, walking, and quality time with loved ones.
· Keep a regular sleep schedule
o Sleep allows the body and brain to remove toxins and repair tissues. Try getting 7-9 hours of sleep each night.
· Move your body
o Exercise arms the body with long-term health benefits included optimized cellular function. Shoot for 20 minutes per day of exercise.
· Practice basic hygiene
o Washing your hands, disinfecting frequently used items, and practicing food safety can all contribute to better overall health and disease prevention.
Remember to focus on the things you can control, such as your priorities, actions and best effort(s). If you do get sick try to prioritize caring for yourself by drinking plenty of liquids, getting lots of sleep, and listening to your doctor.