Today we’ll look at 3 tactics you can begin implementing today to get your immune system running well.
We all know exercise helps us feel better, sleep better, and reduces anxiety. But recent research suggests exercise can also boost your immune system.
Think of your immune system as the bodyguards of your health, patrolling your body on the lookout for viruses and bacteria that can make you sick. When you engage in physical activity, you increase the speed with which those bodyguards can travel to the outermost parts of the body, increasing the activity of immune cells as they move through your bloodstream looking for unwelcomed visitors and eliminating threats to your health.
Remember you don’t have to have a gym membership or engage in rigorous workout classes to get your body moving. Walking is a fantastic low-impact exercise that can elevate your heartrate and burn calories. If you want higher intensity, simply increase your speed, swing your arms, or add hills to your route.
The Western diet is loaded with highly processed “fast food”, unhealthy snacks, and sugar-laden soft drinks, but sorely lacking in fiber and important vitamins and minerals. Recent research indicates eating a diet filled with food lacking nutrients can elicit an inflammatory response from our bodies. This inflammatory response puts our immune system bodyguards on high alert…and puts you at greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes and arteriosclerosis.
Keep your immune system healthy and inflammation free by incorporating the following foods into your diet:
Probiotics – kefir, live-culture yogurt, sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, and miso
Prebiotics – garlic, onions, leeks, asparagus, and dandelion greens
Eat the Rainbow – Try to incorporate every color of the rainbow into every meal each day. Choose nutrient-rich vegetables, fruits, and whole grains along with lean proteins.
If you love a good massage, you’re not alone. Millions of people schedule massages as part of their self-care routine, but it turns out they can also support your immune system.
More than a decade ago, researchers found a correlation between massage and measurable changes in the body’s immune response. Since then, regular massage has been found to increase blood and lymph circulation, moving healthy nutrients through the body and filtering out toxins.
Recent research has found that massage can also increase the level of lymphocytes in the body, cells that help the immune system fight off infection.
If you’d like to try massaging your partner at home, this article from Osmosis Day Spa Sanctuary offers plenty of helpful tips. And, if you’re looking for a quality massage oil that is perfect for at-home use and never leaves you feeling greasy, try our Relax Therapeutic Massage Oil.
Our immune systems are integral to living a long illness-free life. So much of what supports our immune system can be controlled by us, without investing in high-priced supplements (save the money you would’ve spent on them for massages).
Stay healthy by moving your body on a regular basis, nourishing it with nutrient-dense foods, steering clear of the junk found in most western diets, and getting a massage when you can.
Your immune system (and the rest of your body) will thank you for it!
Harvard School of Public Health
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