As the world eagerly awaits the release of a vaccine, there is currently no way of protecting yourself completely from COVID-19. However, there are various things we can all do to limit the spread and reduce our chances of becoming infected. According to the current UK government advice, that includes the following:
- Stay at home as much as possible
- Work from home if you can
- Limit contact with other people
- Keep your distance from people not in your household (2 metres apart where possible)
- Wash your hands regularly
- Do not leave home if you or anyone in your household has symptoms
- Wear a face mask on public transport and in shops
In addition, it would not be unwise to pay closer attention to your health in general, to ensure you’re in the best possible state to fight off the virus, should you become infected.
With that in mind, here are some simple and natural ways to boost your immune system:
- Enjoy a rainbow diet: What we put into our body can have a major impact on our ability to fight off illnesses, so make sure you’re eating a healthy, nutrient-rich diet. Aim for a variety of fruit and vegetables in all colours of the rainbow to ensure you’re getting all the right vitamins and minerals. Pay particular attention to the greens and include a good portion of vegetables such as cabbage, kale, and broccoli which help support liver function – a vital part of our bodies’ natural detoxification process.
- Get moving: Regular exercise benefits the immune system in various ways; in the short term, it can help the immune system deal with pathogens, and in the long term, regular exercise can slow down the ageing of the immune system and reduce the risk of infections.
- Take time to rest: Most adults need about 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night to give our bodies time to rest and repair properly. Not getting enough sleep has been proven by multiple studies to activate a stress response and depress the immune system.
- Let the sun shine: Research has shown that low levels of vitamin D correlate with a higher risk of respiratory infection, so head outside to naturally top up your vitamin D levels which will help your immune system to produce vital antibodies. If, for whatever reason, you are unable to get outside as much as needed, you can opt for Vitamin D supplements – ideally 75mcg or 3000 units/day.
- De-stress: Stress can have a hugely negative effect on our physical and mental well-being, which in turn can reduce our immune response. So take time to relax – whether it’s by reading, listening to music, practicing yoga or meditation – to help improve immune function.
- Connect with friends: Studies have shown that people with strong relationships are more likely to outlive those with poor social ties. Which just goes to show how important a good network of friends and family is in helping to maintain physical and mental health.
- Stay positive: The link between poor mental health and weakened defences has been well documented so make a concerted to effort to find your happy place to boost your immunity.
For further information on how to lead a healthier life, call us on 0131 225 5656 or email at email@example.com to book an appointment at YourGP.