As temperatures (and leaves) continue to fall outside and cold weather approaches, so does the dreaded flu season. It seems once winter rolls around, people start dropping like flies in offices and classrooms worldwide. While paid sick leave is a luxury for many, one third of working Americans don't have any designated time off for sick days – at all.
That means more people are going to work or school feeling miserable, and they end up spreading the flu to everyone around them. People unknowingly transmit viruses to coworkers and peers simply because the alternative – staying home to rest and get better – means they miss out on valuable paychecks. As a result, it can be very difficult to convince your peers to stay home when they have already fallen victim to the flu virus – and once you are surrounded by people with the flu, it can be almost impossible to avoid catching it yourself. So, what can you do to protect yourself and your loved ones from getting sick this year? We compiled this list just for you – so you boost your immune system and educate the people around you before flu season hits!
Share these simple tips and tricks with your friends and loved ones, so everyone stays happy and healthy this year. And remember, taking steps to boost your immune system during flu season protects you from a host of other ailments as well, so you can feel your best no matter where you go!
Regular exercise strengthens more than just your muscles. It also keeps your heart and lungs strong, so they are better equipped to pump blood and oxygen throughout your body and carry infection-fighting white blood cells to wherever they are needed. In other words, exercise gives your body's cells the boost your immune system needs to attack bacteria that can lead to infection and illness.
People who exercise regularly are healthier overall than those who don't, and if you're trying to develop a stronger immune system during flu season, exercise is your secret weapon. Conversely, overworking your body can be extremely detrimental to your ability to fight off illnesses; you need to give your body enough rest, too. A daily 30-minute walk or cardio workout will do wonders for your immune system and for your overall wellbeing.
Fortify Your Diet
The nutrients you put in your body have an enormous effect on the strength of your immune system during flu season. Believe it or not, your parents were on to something when they told you to eat your veggies! Deep green vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, peppers, and asparagus are delicious and nutritious, and their health benefits reach far beyond just your immune system. Even if you think you eat enough of these healthy foods, eat more – you can never have too many nutrients, and your body will thank you later!
In addition to eating your standard veggies, some surprising foods have recently been found to have powerful immune-boosting qualities. Some key ingredients to incorporate into your diet include garlic, onions, ginger, and fresh spices such as thyme and turmeric. Add them to soups, dips, sauces and any other dish to enhance the flavor of your meal – while you strengthen your immune system!
Take The Right Supplements
Over-the-counter supplements are also readily available to enhance your immune system – protein powders, multivitamins and nutritional products have the natural ingredients your body needs to fight off illness. An ideal supplement for boosting your immune system is Hawaiian Spirulina Pacifica: as one of the most nutritious whole food supplements on the planet, it provides an excellent source of protein, beta carotene and essential vitamins and minerals to ensure your body gets the nutrients it deserves.
In fact, Hawaiian Spirulina has over 100 nutrients and antioxidants known to promote health and longevity, boost energy levels, strengthen the immune system, and reduce stress by raising the body's alkalinity and cleansing it of various toxins. This reduction of stress will further enhance your overall wellbeing, as stress affects the body's ability to function at full capacity – regardless of the season.
Catch Enough Z's
We all know we're supposed to get approximately eight hours of sleep every night. However, sometimes life gets in the way and we find ourselves scraping by on five or six hours at best – and we spend most of this time tossing and turning instead of truly experiencing sound sleep. Yet it's important to note that when you deprive your body of sleep, it doesn't just make the next day a little harder. Lack of sleep actually stretches your immune system dangerously thin because you aren't giving your body a chance to rebuild and strengthen itself – and this is especially important as flu season comes back around.
Take steps to encourage a healthy sleep schedule. For some, it's simply a matter of making sleep a top priority and scheduling it into your evening. For others, a conscious change in diet or routine may be necessary. Refrain from eating two hours before bed and be careful with how many caffeinated beverages you consume each day. Caffeine can be harmful to your body in many ways, but it especially affects the amount – and quality – of sleep you experience each night. Caffeine confuses your body by increasing your heart rate, which sends signals to your brain that you should be up and moving around – and when you're trying to fall asleep, these signals can seriously impact your ability to finally close your eyes.
Before the flu virus starts attacking your home or office, keep these tips in mind and share them with family, friends, coworkers and peers. Integrate them into your daily routine, and encourage your loved ones to do the same – you'll be helping your body (and the bodies around you!) fight off the threats that will inevitably pop up once flu season is in full swing. Give your body a fighting chance this year: exercise regularly, take your vitamins, get enough sleep, and eat right. What other tips do you have for boosting your immune system at this time of year?