The end of summer means more than just cooler weather and pumpkin flavored everything. It’s also the start of cold and flu season. Making an effort to keep your body healthy will go a long way towards preventing the flu. Here are 5 tips for boosting your immune system before flu season starts this year.
- Eat citrus: Citrus fruits, like oranges, grapefruits, lemons and limes, are high in vitamin C, a vitamin that is known to boost immune function.
- Get vitamin D: Research has shown that low levels of Vitamin D can increase a person’s risk for developing the flu or a cold. Get 15 minutes of sunlight each day or take a vitamin D supplement to make sure that your levels are high enough.
- Avoid sugar: Sugar and other grains negatively impact the gut flora, which can make it easier for the flu virus and other germs to get into the body. Cut back on sugar and refined grains, and increase your intake of fermented foods to promote gut health.
- Stay rested: Getting enough sleep helps your immune system function well and helps the body heal. Aim for 7-8 hours of sleep each night.
- Regular exercise: Staying active helps to boost the immune system, which reduces your chance of getting sick. Aim for around 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week. If you are new to exercise, try taking a walk, going for a swim or taking a yoga class.