Immune boosting tips from the health experts & researchers
Prep Your System:
One out of every two cells in your body is actually a helpful bacteria cell that’s helping digest food, regulate cellular processes, and even to fight off their harmful relatives.
- The strains Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium are especially helpful in blocking invasion by other bacteria.
- These bacteria typically live in your gut, so prepping with probiotics is going to boost your immune system by boosting the levels of those helpful bacteria.
You should be getting at least one billion colony-forming units (CFUs) a day – most adults get somewhere between one and ten billion CFUs.
Many over-the-counter supplements don’t provide enough of the live bacteria to be helpful,
- so you’re better off getting your probiotics from fermented foods like kimchi, sauerkraut, yogurt, tempeh, and kombucha.
Hydrate and Hydrate Some More:
- Evidence shows that proper hydration helps ward off some risk factors like high cortisol levels.
- In fact, getting enough water in your diet can actually soften cortisol spikes associated with intense exercise.
You should be drinking ½ to 1 ounce of water per pound of body weight.
- If you’re struggling to meet your goal, try switching up with herbal tea or seltzer water.
- Try to avoid diuretic or water-losing chemicals like caffeine if you’re not getting enough water.
- Also stay away from too many sweet drinks like fruit juice.
Added sugar can fuel unhealthy bacteria in your gut and negate the prepping you did in Step One.
Exercise in the Sweet Spot:
- Studies show that moderate intensity workouts, like flow yoga or bike riding, can actually give your immune system a boost, increasing your defense against disease-causing invaders.
- However, overexertion, like you get from an especially intense workout, can actually blunt your immune response.
- This may be because it lowers your magnesium levels, which are essential for helping your immune system and body cells work properly.
So what should you do? Aim for the “sweet spot” with your workout, especially if you feel a little tickle in your throat. Go for a slight sweat (sweat is part of your body’s immune defense after all), but save the intense workout for another day when you feel at your best.
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