As much as we hate to admit it, cold and flu season is here and if you want to avoid getting sick this year, you need to get your immune system in fighting shape. It gets overworked, especially during the winter months, so start taking preventive steps now so you stay healthy. Nutritional therapist Hannah Braye advises following this morning to night routine to boost your immune system.
- Drink lemon water- Start the day hydrated and with a little vitamin C, which helps support the immune system.
- Take a live bacteria supplement- Over 70% of the immune system is in the lining of the gut and live bacteria helps give it a boost.
- Eat a colorful lunch- Skip the beige sandwich and fill up on vividly colorful fruits and veggies since the immune system needs a variety of different nutrients to stay healthy.
- Take a walk outside- It can lower cortisol levels, give you a dose of vitamin D, and gets you away from your computer for a few minutes.
- Have a protein-rich snack- When you hit the 3 p.m. slump, instead of reaching for another coffee or a sugary treat, snack on nuts, seeds, a boiled egg, or veggies and hummus.
- Squeeze in some exercise- It’s easy to blow off working out when you’re busy, but exercise has been found to have “immune-enhancing effects” and a positive impact on the gut microbiome.
- Eat dinner early- It’s supposed to be better for digestion and sleep to not eat too late at night.
- Go to bed early- Not getting enough quality sleep can have a negative effect on immune function, so try to shut off the screens and unplug an hour before you hit the sack and read a book to help you nod off.