Tips to stay Healthy this Fall and Winter
Staying healthy is at the top of peoples minds this fall and winter. And supporting the immune system may be more important this season than ever.
While there are no guarantees, a healthy body generally repels infection and illness better than an unhealthy body.
Here are some key factors that can help support a healthy immune system:
Diet and Nutrition:
- Eat lots of whole, minimally processed foods. Bright, colorful vegetables and fruits. These contain nutrients like vitamin C, betacarotene/Vitamin A, zinc, selenium and B vitamins, that support a healthy immune response.
- Avoid excess sugar and alcohol. Theses can suppress the immune response.
- Garlic, onions, mushrooms have specific immune supportive actions.
- Garlic contains allicin which has noted antimicrobial activity and quercetin, which helps to get zinc into cells.
Sleep for your immune system:
- Adequate sleep supports a healthy immune system. Aspects of the immune system are suppressed during times of inadequate sleep.
- Acute stressors tend to suppress cellular immunity while maintaining humoral immunity. Chronic stressors appear to suppress both cellular and humoral immunity. Managing and recovering from stress is important in maintaining a healthy immune response.
Movement and exercise:
- Keep in mind that exercise is a “stressor”. So, more is not always better, and recovery is important here as well. But regularly moving your body (aka exercise) appears to enhance immune function.
Gut Health for your immune system:
- A large portion of the immune system exists in the digestive tract. This acts as both a physical first line of defense and an immunological response trigger. Gut health, including diet and the microbiome can interact with immune tissue to support or suppress immune response.
And when in doubt, reaching out to a naturopathic doctor can be a healthy step. Personalized care and tips to remain healthy this season is just a phone call away.