Much like soldiers who grow weary in battle, your immune cells can also lose some of their protective effects when your body is constantly battling poor health habits. As such, it’s not surprising that doctors frequently recommend certain lifestyle changes as a way to optimize the function of your immune system. One of the most important steps someone can take to help the immune system is to achieve balance and adopt the fundamentals of healthy living. This includes reducing stress, as there is ample evidence that stress negatively impacts one’s health. Lowering stress can help the body maintain both physical and emotional health.
Nutrition and diet
The functioning of the immune system, like most systems in the body, is dependent on proper nutrition. It has been long known that severe malnutrition leads to immunodeficiency, while receiving too many nutrients can lead to diseases such as diabetes and obesity.
Specific foods may also affect the immune system; for example, fresh fruits, vegetables, and foods rich in certain fatty acids may foster a healthy immune system.
Antioxidants and immune health
One of the best ways to keep your immune system strong and prevent colds and flu might surprise you: Shop your supermarket’s produce aisle. Experts say a diet rich in fruits and vegetables can help you ward off infections like colds and flu. That’s because these super foods contain immune-boosting antioxidants.
What are antioxidants? They are vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that protect and repair cells from damage caused by free radicals. Many experts believe this damage plays a part in a number of chronic diseases, including hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis), cancer, and arthritis. Free radicals can also interfere with your immune system. So fighting off damage with antioxidants helps keep your immune system strong, making you better able to ward off colds, flu, and other infections.
A diet rich in antioxidant vitamins and nutrients can boost immunity to help fight infection. Researchers believe that when the balance between free radicals and antioxidants is upset, it can contribute to developing cancer and heart disease, as well as age-related diseases.
This article was originally written on exploresupplements.com