A healthy immune system is one of the key ingredients to having a healthy and happy life. Whether you realize it or not, some of the habits you may have developed can compromise your immune system, making it harder for your body to avoid disease. Eliminating these bad habits and replacing them with ones that support your immune system can make a major difference in your life. Here are the most important things you can do to rebuild and support your immune system.
Critical keys to supporting your immune system
Get more sleep!Your body needs at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Good, restful sleep can do more for your body than you might realize. Sleep allows your body to heal itself, remove toxins from your system, and limit the effects of stressors like cortisol. Poor or inadequate sleep actually increases the stress on your body and can make you more likely to become sick or develop diseases. But not all sleep is created equal! If you’re serious about sleeping well, develop healthy sleep routines. These include going to bed at a consistent time, eliminating all light sources in your bedroom and relaxing before bed to allow your brain a chance to achieve deep, restful sleep.
Develop excellent nutritional habits.
Like sleep, compromised nutrition can weaken your immune system and leave your body open to illness and chronic disease. High quality food prepared in healthy ways should be the basis of your nutritional plan. While you should strive to get most of your nutritional needs from the food you eat, thoughtful supplementation can help you achieve your optimal nutritional balance. Consult with your wellness provider to determine which supplementation routines will yield the best benefit for your particular circumstances.
In addition, restricting your intake of unhealthy fats and sugars are two things you can do immediately to improve your diet. Replacing unhealthy fats (safflower oil, corn oil, canola, cottonseed oil, soybean oil) with healthier choices – like avocados, wild caught salmon, chia seeds, butter from grass-fed cows, coconut and olive oils – can yield immediate nutritional benefits. Eliminating sugars – even those touted as being “healthy” like fruit juice – can also have a major positive impact on your immune system.
Take care of your gut!
Your gut is filled with healthy organisms that help you digest food and extract nutrients. Poor eating habits, pharmaceuticals and bad nutrition can damage the environment these organisms need to help you stay healthy. Taking good care of your gut is essential to a healthy immune system. Establishing and maintaining healthy bacterial colonies requires time, patience and knowledge about what’s good (and not good) for your digestive system. Your wellness provider can help you learn about the habits that support (and compromise) excellent digestive health.
Your body is meant to move, and when you don’t move, you can set yourself up for poor health. Daily exercise offers benefits for your heart and lungs, your muscles and bones, and your joints. It also gives your immune system an added boost. Exercise even when you’re not feeling well. You don’t have to put in a full workout, but regular exercise can help you avoid becoming ill, and minimize the impact of illness when you do get sick.
Seek out chiropractic adjustments!
Chiropractic adjustments can help your body perform the way it was intended to. Chiropractic adjustments have a positive impact on blood pressure, reduce inflammation in the body and relieve skeletal and spinal pain. They can also improve your range of motion, making it easier to gain the full advantage from your exercise regimen. Chiropractic adjustment can also improve your digestion, allowing you to maximize your nutritional program. By relieving pain and inflammation, chiropractic adjustment can also boost your immune system and allow it to focus on fighting off illnesses and diseases more effectively. Chiropractic patients who maintain a regular adjustment schedule have fewer colds and respiratory infections than those who don’t.
Your body is designed to heal itself, and your immune system – when properly supported – can do just that. Stressors like lack of sleep and poor nutrition make it difficult – sometimes impossible – for your body to react appropriately to illness. Over time, lack of proper immune system support can allow your body to develop serious – even life-threatening – chronic illnesses and conditions. Bad nutritional and health habits can also damage your body so that it cannot effectively recover from serious diseases like cancer.
If you don’t know where to start when it comes to supporting your immune system, have a frank conversation with your wellness provider. Learn about how you can incorporate excellent sleep and nutritional habits, and which supplements can help boost or rebuild your natural immune system. Also discuss habits and practices that can compromise your immune system, and open the door to long-term health problems that your weakened immune system cannot repair.