Credit: Pixabay Via Pexels
People tend to view health from a seasonal standpoint. During summer, the prospect of getting sick is mostly “out of sight, out of mind.” Then, when the cold weather rolls around again in the fall, they batten down the hatches.
Although seasonality is a common feature of most influenzas and viruses, it is still entirely possible to get sick during the summer. Not only that but supporting one’s immune system should be an all-year endeavor. Healthy routines meant to facilitate your body’s immune response shouldn’t vary from season to season.
This summer, more than most, sickness is weighing on people’s minds. Here are four tips to help you support your immune system – from basic considerations to lesser-known immune boosters.
Try Chaga Mushrooms
Throughout history, several cultures – European, East Asian and North American First Nations, notably – have prized the Chaga mushroom for its ability to support a healthy immune system. According to contemporary research, Chaga mushrooms may contain novel compounds that aid in white blood cell production.
It used to be difficult to find Chaga mushrooms (at least in the west). Luckily, these days you can buy Chaga mushrooms online – they come in a convenient powdered form, which you can mix with your morning tea or coffee.
Yoga is a potent one-two punch for immune support.
Vigorous yoga styles, like Ashtanga and Bikram, are fantastic for aerobic exercise. Several studies show that regular exercise is one of the best things you can do for your immune system. Exercise supports cardiovascular health, lowers your blood pressure, and allows you to control body weight – all of which create ideal conditions for a well-functioning immune system.
Meanwhile, gentler yoga styles, like Hatha and Kundalini, can lower your stress. Research shows that stress weakens the immune system by lowering t-cell production (an essential white blood cell). There is an entire field of study devoted to the stress-illness link, called “psychoneuroimmunology.”
Credit: Rui Dias Via Pexels
Develop a Sleep Ritual
Adequate sleep is critical to a robust immune system. Without it, your body simply isn’t functioning at its optimal level – that goes for your brain, physical stamina, and your immune system.
To support your immune system, develop a sleep ritual. Go to bed at the same time each night (even on the weekends) and set an alarm for the same time each morning. Avoid caffeine and alcohol before bedtime, and put away any screens at least 90 minutes before you plan to sleep.
Embrace the Allicin
Finally, if you’re looking for an easy way to improve your immune system (and potentially ward off vampires), break out the garlic. Studies show that allicin, a compound abundant in garlic, may help prevent common flu and cold illness. Raw garlic is best, but if you find the taste a bit strong, roasted garlic has similar benefits.
Short of locking yourself in a sterile room, there is no way to guarantee you won’t get sick. That isn’t the goal with these tips. The goal here is to fortify your body’s natural defenses so that if you are exposed to illness, your body can spring into action on your behalf. With a yoga routine, sleep schedule, Chaga mushroom tea, and a diet rich in garlicky foods, you may be able to strengthen your immune system this summer.