Fit Life: Easy ways to boost your immunity as flu season strikes
Ky3′s Paul Adler visits with Pamela Hernandez of Sharlin Health & Neurology
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - As we roll into cold and flu season during the COVID-19 pandemic, we need to do everything we can to cultivate a healthy and strong immune system. Recently the Institute for Functional Medicine published an article with some helpful tips to protect yourself this season.
It all starts with the basic hygiene behaviors that should be common place by now: wash your hands and wear your mask. But there are other lifestyle factors that support your immune system.
For example, we need to get 7-8 hours a night of quality sleep. This is restorative time for your body, allowing your immune system to do its heavy lifting when the body isn’t busy doing other things.
It’s also important to exercise regularly, which can support a healthy immune system. Also, manage your stress level to decrease the damage the stress response has on your immune system.
We can also support our immune system with nutrition. I like a food-first approach. That means eating a lot of brightly colored fruits and vegetables. They provide vitamins and antioxidants that naturally build up your immune system.
Since our diets are never perfect, supplementation can be key. Vitamin C is an easy and safe option to add to your daily routine for immune system health. Adequate vitamin D is a vital component of a heathy immune system too. Since you can overdo it, I do recommend having an easy test done to check your Vitamin D levels. Gut health is critical to immune health so you may want to consider adding a probiotic as well.
Finally, EGCG is a catechin that helps regulate immune function. You can take EGCG in a pill form but Pamela recommends getting it in a more delicious way – through green tea! Enjoy four cups of green tea brewed from loose leaf tea or one tsp of matcha powder to support a healthy immune system.
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