During the cold and flu season, it is important to understand how to boost your immune system. Now I’m not saying you will never get sick, that’s crazy. But if you follow a few simple concepts you can help your body be prepared to fight off infections more effectively. Here are a few tried and true immune boosters….
- Drink Water: Staying properly hydrated keeps every system in our body working effectively. This includes your immune and lymphatic systems, which help fight infection and circulate your immune cells throughout your body.
- Rest: You have my permission to rest! Your immune system is expensive to run. You need to take it easy when it is fighting. My daughter recently slept 18 hours straight while fighting this nasty viral respiratory infection. She woke up and was 75% better. Why? Because I didn’t interrupt her immune system. No doctor or chiropractor knows how to better fight infection than your body. When you are actively fighting an infection, the immune system consumes approximately 70% of your calories!! Your body creates a fever to speed up your metabolism, which speeds up your immune response. Fevers also help kill infections because viruses and bacteria don’t live so well above 100 degrees. Now you understand why you are tired when you are sick. There is simply no energy left for you to do day to day tasks. And no, taking Dayquil does not help you fight the infection. It shuts your immune system off. You might feel better, but that infection is now penetrating deeper in your body without the immune system firing on all cylinders.
- Make Home made Chicken Soup: Harvard Medical School did a study that demonstated that home made chicken soup was more effective at fighting infections than antibiotic and antiviral drugs! It looks like grandma knows her stuff. Home made chicken soup is loaded with minerals, healthy fats, and veggies to help boost your immune function.
- Be Patient: Your immune system takes time. It has to make millions of immune cells to fight off the infection. Please understand that this process does not happen in the blink of an eye. Your body operates on its own time scale. It wasn’t developed in our instant gratification, want it now culture. Allow your body time to fight an infection without bombarding it with a bunch of crap from the drug store. Use common sense here. If you are worsening over the course of a week, then talk to your doctor.
I hope this post gives you a little more faith in your body. Immune systems are like muscles. They need to work in order to stay strong. If you constantly shut them off with drugs and intervention, then you will need more drugs and interventions in your life. It is that simple.