No one likes getting sick. It reduces your productivity, makes your feel terrible, and prevents you from having any kind of fun. Getting vaccinated and consistently washing your hands are the most surefire ways to avoid coming down with a virus, but, in addition, there are other steps you can take to boost your immunity and stay healthy. Here are some tips on staying virus-free:
Those of us who rarely seem to get sick often spend time getting active. Exercising for just 30-60 minutes per day is enough to boost your immune system and fend off viruses. Researches are not yet certain why or how physical activity boosts the immune system, but they do have several theories. It could be that activity flushes mucus out of the lungs and airways, or that rising body temperature may prevent bacteria from growing, or even that exercise slows the release of stress-related hormones that could increase the chance of illness. Whatever the reason, one thing is certain: exercising will keep you healthy and virus-free.
Research has shown that long-term stress weakens the immune system. Social interaction seems to be a key factor in this connection so make an effort to connect and maintain good relationships with those around you. If you suffer from chronic stress or depression, seek the help of a therapist or psychiatrist. In addition, test out a few methods of relaxation and find out what best works for you. Here are some ways you can de-stress:
- Drink herbal tea
- Read a book
- Listen to music
- Take a hot bath
Maintain a Healthy Diet
You have probably seen many products that boast an ability to boost the immune system, but thus far, there are no research-backed supplements that can actually do this. The best thing to do for your body in order to stay virus-free is to eat a variety of healthy foods that provide natural vitamins and nutrients.
Here are some foods you should consider including in your diet to maintain a healthy immune system:
- Vitamin C: Your body uses vitamin C to build and maintain healthy skin, which defends your body against germs. Foods that include high amounts of vitamin C include: oranges, grapefruit, honeydew melon, kiwi, mangoes, papayas, raspberries, starfruit, strawberries, and tangerines.
- Antioxidants: Antioxidants protect your body from cell damage. The best way to include antioxidants in your diet is to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts, and seeds.
- Healthy fats: Healthy fats help your body absorb nutrients. You can find healthy fats in foods like avocadoes, fish, and nuts.
Your body depends on sleep for its daily functions. Getting enough rest is vital is fending off and fighting illness. Sleep deprivation causes physical stress on your body, which weakens your immune system and increases your chances of catching viruses. In order to stay virus-free, make sure you get between 8-9 hours or sleep a night. If you are having trouble sleeping, consult your doctor to determine the cause and address it. In the meantime, try winding down with some of the relaxation techniques mentioned above.
A healthy routine including diet and exercise, rest, and relaxation will keep your body in tip-top shape, and will help you avoid getting sick. Follow some of these tips, get vaccinated, and wash your hands regularly, and you will stay virus-free all year.