In a continued effort to help you through the COVID-19 crisis, I just want to remind you how important all the factors that I have listed below are in strengthening your immune system to combat this health epidemic. Of course, we want to continue to take the recommendations of our government institutions in curbing the spread, but bottom line is we want to make your body immune to this virus. And there are many ways to do this.
Physical distancing and washing your hands are important, but let’s not forget that a strong immune system is critical for protecting your body from infection. We all need to focus on proper nutrition, sleep, stress management, and gut health to maintain our health.
As a reminder, I have made for you two very informative presentations about how to boost your immune system to help protect you from COVID-19. You can find those on our official “Our COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Wellness Plan.”
However, I just want to summarize the most critical points for you in strengthening your immune health:
If the gut is healthy, the immune system will be healthy. During a time when grocery stores are facing shortages you want to make food choices that are as nutrient dense as possible, as opposed to foods with empty calories and high carbohydrates.
Avoid foods that come in a box and reduce your sugar and alcohol consumption. If selection is limited, look to canned foods like beans, vegetables, meats, fish (sardines are a great source of Omega-3 fatty acids), chicken/beef broths, and rice. Foods that are high in antioxidants are a great choice.
Multi-vitamins and fish oil are good for foundational health, but for immune support I recommend Vitamins A, C, and D, as well as Zinc and DMG. Maitake mushroom extract is also known for containing beta-glucans, which increase immune defense.
Lastly, quality probiotics are essential for promoting natural antibodies and keeping harmful bacteria at bay. Use these supplements to help bridge nutritional gaps in your diet and support stronger immune system function.
Staying home doesn’t mean forgetting your exercise routine. Keeping active reduces stress hormones and stimulates endorphins, so make time for working out indoors or taking a walk outside. Natural sunlight will also help regulate your circadian rhythm and promote a good night’s rest. Dr. Zack Bush gives us a fantastic 4-minute workout to help us keep our body moving!
Turn off your devices at least an hour before bed, and maybe read a book instead. Blue light from laptops and phones suppress melatonin and mess with your sleep. Listening to relaxing music and taking a warm bath are other good ways to “wind down” and help you relax. I provide you “Seven Tips for Improving Your Sleep” HERE.
High cortisol and increased stress weaken the immune system. This is a pervasive problem among adults, and recent events are not helping.
Meditation and breathing exercises are the best approaches to lowering cortisol, and there are several apps and methods out there to help. One of these is BRAIN Tap. I want to provide you a FREE 30-day trial membership to learn more about this service.
Remind yourself to focus on the things you can control right now — how you react to situations and the actions you can take.
Remember you are not alone. We are all facing similar challenges right now, and we will get through them together. I am confident our community will emerge from this predicament stronger than ever. Until then, please know that I am here to support you on your wellness journey.
Stay safe and be well.
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