Exposure to germs is almost inevitable, but with a strong immune system, you can avoid getting sick or prevent a mild cold from becoming a more serious illness. Here are some ways to give your immune system a boost.
Eat nutritious foods. Colorful fruits and vegetables contain antioxidants, which help fight infection. Also fill up on foods rich in vitamin C, vitamin E, zinc, selenium, and omega-3 fatty acids. These include broccoli, citrus fruit, nuts, whole grains, beans, chicken, and tuna.
Drink plenty of water. Water can flush out toxins that lead to disease and will also prevent dehydration.
Sleep soundly. Not getting enough sleep makes your body more susceptible to illness. A lack of sleep can also increase the stress hormone cortisol and cause inflammation.
Stay active. Exercising regularly improves immune system function by increase leukocytes, cells that fight infection. Moderate exercise, such as walking, is perfect.
Reduce stress. Some stress is unavoidable, but handling stress in an unhealthy way- such as ignoring problems instead of solving them- can cause chronic stress. This leads to an increase of stress hormones, which can reduce white blood cell function and result in illness.