Whether it’s cold season, flu season, or whatever nasty pathogen that decides to infiltrate your system, immune defense needs to be prioritized. Why? Well, the answer is simple — no one wants to get sick. I’m not sure of anyone who wakes up and says, “Today seems like a great day to get sick.” No, it doesn’t happen. And if you want to ensure that the sniffles and sneezes don’t come knocking on your door, let’s look at a few ways to boost immune defense.
Below, you will find many key aspects that play a role in immune defense and help your body create an impenetrable shield against bacteria and pathogens that can do the body harm. While they may not prevent 100% of the nasties from making their way into your body (since your body is under attack almost 24/7), it will put you in a much better position to fight off whatever comes its way during cold season.
One aspect of immune defense that many don’t associate with being beneficial is exercise and staying active. Sure, exercise can help you build muscle and burn off stubborn body fat, but it also helps prepare you for cold season so that you can ward off pathogens that can get you sick.
Exercise helps you boost circulation, which allows immune cells the ability to move around the body more easily and fight off anything that can do you harm. Getting as little as 30 minutes of exercise each day can help boost the immune system.
Something else of note is that those who exercise tend to eat better to fuel their body and achieve their goals. The food you eat also plays a role in immunity, which is our next topic for immune defense.
Clean Up Your Nutrition
If you want your body to run like a well-oiled machine, it comes down to what you put in it. What you feed the machine will dictate how your organs and systems function. It’s no different from putting regular gas in an exotic sports car. It may run for a little, but eventually, you’re going to have problems if you don’t put in premium gas. Your body is no different.
Ensure your nutrition plan is balanced. Include lean sources of protein, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats. When cold season hits, you want every advantage you can get to boost your immune defense. Consume as many whole food and organic products as you can. This preserves the nutrient profile, and it’s those key micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) that boost the immune system and help protect the body.
Get Enough Sleep
An overlooked piece of the equation when it comes to your immune defense during cold season is sleep. We all get the same 24 hours in a day, but if you’re like most people, you’re trying to squeeze out as many hours as you can — even if that means burning the candle at both ends. This will eventually catch up to you. When this takes place, what tends to happen? You get sick, right?
You need to strive for a minimum of seven hours of sleep per night. This will allow your body to not only recover properly from your workouts but also allow your body to regenerate and rejuvenate on a cellular and immune defense level. If you’re having trouble getting enough sleep, set sleep alarms, and when they go off, start your bedtime routine and slide under the sheets for some shut-eye. Make sleep a priority, and you can help ward off sickness this cold season.
Reduce Stress Levels
Stress is ugly and destructive. When you are stressed, it releases a stress hormone called cortisol. Cortisol can alter hormone levels and also weaken the armor of your immune defense by suppressing your immune system. In order to combat this, find ways that you can unwind and release stress daily.
Some ways to relieve stress include reading a book, sitting in a quiet room, meditating, doing yoga, deep breathing, walking, and even exercising. Something worth mentioning is that not getting enough sleep can raise stress and cortisol levels. Many of the things found in this article about immune defense fit hand-in-hand. Therefore, it’s important to implement more than one strategy this cold season to stay protected.
Wash Your Hands
I’m not your mom, but the title of this heading may make me sound like her. It should go without saying but you need to be washing your hands with soap and water throughout the day. Do this for a good 20 seconds each time. You’re inviting bacteria and harmful pathogens into your body when you don’t wash your hands and then touch your eyes, mouth, and nose.
After using the restroom, touching doors, and even after shaking hands with a bunch of people you meet (you don’t know where their hands have been), it’s a good idea to wash your hands. This may make you feel like some sort of germaphobe, but if you want to stay healthy this cold season and keep your immune defense heightened, there’s nothing wrong with washing your hands thoroughly throughout the day.
Leverage Key Supplements
There are several key supplements that you can consider implementing into your supplement routine to boost your immune defense. One of those supplements is vitamin D due to the body not getting enough natural vitamin D from the sun since you spend more time indoors during the colder months when cold season sets in. It’s for the same reason that many feel down in the dumps, their mood changes when the temperature drops and we get less sunlight during the day.
You can consider implementing other supplements into the fold: vitamin C, vitamin E, elderberry, echinacea, selenium, zinc, and garlic. You can get some of these nutrients from the food you consume in your diet or even through something like a multivitamin to ensure you don’t have any nutritional gaps in your diet. Either way, getting in adequate amounts of these nutrients and supplements can help maximize your immune defense this cold season.
Maximize Immune Defense Immediately!
While NutraBio has products that check off all the boxes mentioned in the key supplements above, there’s something extra special that you should be aware of. NutraBio Immune is an all-encompassing immune defense supplement that can easily fit into your supplement regimen and help to keep you protected from cold season.
NutraBio Immune contains ingredients like grape seed extract, ginger root, vitamin D, NAC, zinc, selenium, copper, and patented Epicor® that provide digestive and prebiotic benefits as well as immune support. One aspect that is most often overlooked is how the gut microbiome and overall gut health play a role in immune defense. NutraBio Immune helps get you protected and keep you protected from the nasty germs, bacteria, and pathogens that are lurking out there.
By: Matt Weik, BS, CSCS, CPT, CSN