As much as we all want quarantines and lockdowns to end, the world is still very much threatened by COVID-19. We all should be cautious of our health and safety not only of ourselves but for others as well. That means maintaining a healthy immune system, and of course, wearing a mask when leaving the house and washing your hands frequently and vigorously.
However, we should not forget about the common cold and flu, especially during the winter season when it’s more active or during changing seasons. Of course no one enjoys being sick or catching the season’s flu, but we should take extra cautious now more than ever because when our immune system is weak, we are more prone to infections and viruses like the Coronavirus. Always keeping up a strong immune system and living a healthy lifestyle for the most part will decrease our chances of catching infections and flus when we leave our house, like a protective mask for our health.
Here are the best ways to naturally boost your immune system and maintain it. These tips may be obvious but we know it’s not as easy. We’re giving you an extra reminder, plus with added tips of incorporating CBD!
Yes, we all know the rule – drink more water. We’re tired of hearing it yet it seems like we always need a reminder. Besides all the other great wonders water does to the rest of our body and skin, water is essential for our immune system. When we drink water frequently throughout the day, we’re passing down bacteria and viruses that we might have caught during the day in our respiratory tract. Water also helps flush out toxins, carries nutrients to our cells, normalizes blood pressure, and overall is just a vital for our lives.
Drinking water is indeed key to hydration, but there are also other ways to keep our bodies hydrated. Steaming is something some of us are missing out on. However, it’s quite crucial especially for many of us who live in colder climates and suffer those extra dry winters. Keeping a steamer next to your bed and having it on overnight will do wonders to your skin, body, and health.
Also, staying hydrated with warm liquids especially when it’s cold will not only warm up your body but it will soothe inflammation, keep your nose and throat clear and hydrated, and comfort your gut. Overall, it’s key to stay hydrated however many ways we can and get plenty of water in our system throughout the day. Cause in the end, we are what we’re made of.
2. Healthy Diet
This pandemic has lasted so long we all probably want to retire as chefs and bakers and order in a box of pizza every night, eat a pint of ice cream for dessert while we start a new episode of something we haven’t watched on Netflix by now. Although that sounds like a great time – we should still try cooking our own meals and avoid processed foods and snacks on some nights while we’re [stuck] at home.
Eating healthy regularly will do wonders not only to your waistline but also to your overall health and immune system. One step we can take is reducing our intake of processed foods and meats. So that means try avoiding anything in a sealed bag or box. Although some healthy snacks may come in a package, chances are we can still be able to make it at home. Reach for unprocessed, whole, and natural foods like fruits, vegetables, legumes, grains, nuts, seeds, proteins, etc. Make sure your plate is always full of natural colours and flavours, and try adding a kick of herbs and spices to it as well.
Adding superfoods to boost your immune system
Certain foods in particular are super immune boosters. Like garlic, not only does it jazz up your dish, early civilizations recognized its value in fighting infections. Garlic may also slow down the hardening of the arteries and helps lower blood pressure. Ginger is another ingredient many turns to after getting sick. It may help decrease inflammation, which can help reduce sore throat and inflammatory illnesses. But it is also great for the gut and may help with nausea as well. Some other super-foods are those high in healthy fats and Omega-3 fatty acids like avocados, flaxseeds, chia seeds, walnuts, etc. These foods reduce inflammation and are also proven to protect against autoimmune disorders like Crohn’s disease and rheumatoid arthritis. Fermented foods are very beneficial for our health, in particular our gut health. Fermented foods like kimchi and kombucha are highly rich in probiotic bacteria, increasing the health of your gut micro biome and digestive system and enhancing the immune system.
Getting the natural and powerful nutrients from food is an essential element for our immune system; top that with a few drops of CBD oil changes the whole wellness game. We love adding CBD in our smoothies, salads, yogurts, etc., for extra health benefits.
In general, a normal healthy diet should consist of controlled portions of carbs, proteins, healthy fats, and lots of veggies and plants.
3. Movement & Exercise
It’s no secret we all have not been able exercise as much as we use to. From daily movement of going out and about to opened gyms, a lot has probably changed for most. However, no matter how much Rona wants to disturb our lives, we should not let her impact our immune system. Getting in some kind of movement, whether it’s a 10 minute at-home workout or a simple walk in your neighborhood, it helps manage your stress levels and is important for our overall health.
Your workouts do not have to be extraneous, but we recommend moving your body whether you’re cleaning your home or spinning on your Peloton, just make sure to get up on your feet regularly. We also recommend getting outside as much as possible. Although it may be hard for those who suffer freezing winters – taking time to breathe nature’s air, soak in some natural vitamin D, feeling the earth beneath your feet, or even hugging a tree does wonders to your body. Taking the time to appreciate what nature has to gift and being one with the earth refreshes your mind, body, and soul.
Taking your daily dose of CBD before or after exercise will help ease your mind and body while elevating your mood. Exercising at least three times a week improves your mental health and immune response. Meditate, get out in the sun, and do what’s right for your body.
4. Healing Herbs and Supplements
Staying active and hydrated while eating healthy is crucial for our immune system as mentioned so far. Crushing down these three habits consistently makes you a healthy-living winner, but give yourself an extra boost with healing herbs and supplements. Although many foods give us natural nutrients and vitamins, getting an extra boost in supplement form will help your immune systems stay strong and healthy. Supplements are a great way to introduce key vitamins and nutrients that you might be missing from certain diets, like lack of iron, zinc, vitamin-B12 or other minerals. Vitamins C and D are also essential especially during the winters when there is less sun and the weather’s cold and sickly. C and D vitamins acts as antioxidants by keeping our immune systems strong and protected, so it’s always better to increase the intake of these vitamins.
Herbs are also a great, natural way to boost our overall health and well-being, and in some cases even help us heal. Adding fresh herbs into your diet is a great place to start, or drinking herbal tea throughout the day soothes your gut and is a great drink replacement. Herbs like mint have many beneficial properties that boost the immune system and fight the common cold, as it’s a staple in traditional medicine throughout the world.
Trending herbs and supplements
Astragalus root has also become a popular supplement for overall health. Astragalus has long been used in traditional Chinese medicine to strengthen immunity, fight viruses, and reduce inflammation.
Elderberry extract is also a very common herbal medicine used to improve immune health and fight infections. It’s packed with antioxidants and vitamins that may boost our health, tame inflammation, lessen stress, and even help protect our heart.
Another supplement that is booming the market is mushroom supplements. These immune-boosting mushrooms have been part of traditional medicine and cultural diets for decades and there is a reason why the demand only gets higher. Mushrooms like Reishi, Chaga, Lion’s Mane, Turkey Tail, and Cordyceps justify improving immune and gut health and combat illness. Learn more about medicinal mushrooms from Healthline.
Last but not least, we cannot forget to mention our favorite herbal remedy, CBD. But how does CBD help our immune system? Since CBD is the best natural remedy for sleep aid and stress relief, there are many health benefits resulting from that. The less sleep you get, the more likely you are to get sick. Your immune system relies on healthy sleep habits to keep you well, and adult bodies typically need between seven to eight hours of sleep. That being said, our mental health can have a huge effect on our bodies as well. Studies have shown that long-term stress can lead to increased inflammation in the body and increased risk of contracting infections. By taking care of your mental wellness, you’ll be giving your immune system a fighting chance against illness.
Finally, we should all consider avoiding behaviors that don’t serve our health and well-being like smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol excessively.
By following these tips, and supplementing your body with healthy habits and dietary choices, your gut biome and immune system will be happier and healthier. And remember, wash your hands regularly and stay safe.