Common colds, flu, and other immune-related ailments are at their peak in the colder months, creating the ever-growing need for individuals of all ages to take precautions against becoming sick. The best way to stave off illness is with a mindset that puts you on the offense rather than the defense. This means making healthy choices. Here are a few tips:
- Eat Green: Vegetables such as spinach, kale, bell peppers, and broccoli are packed with vitamins and nutrients that your body needs for fuel, so consume them daily, including vitamin a which a known anti-inflammatory agent. For ideas of what to include on your plate, check out this lengthy list of vegetables known for their green goodness. Also, dietary supplements such as Vegetable Essentials contain phytonutrients from a natural blend of vegetables such as brussel sprouts, broccoli, and kale.
- Don't Forget your Carrots: Carrots, Sweet Potatoes, Cantaloupe and other fruits and vegetables that contain an orange pigment are great sources for beta carotene, which then is converted into vitamin A. Vitamin A has been shown as a necessary vitamins and minerals to help boost your immune functions, leading you to stay healthy.
- Get your Citrus Fruits: Oranges, grapefruits, and other citrus fruits are great sources of vitamin C. Vitamin C helps promote a healthy immune system, increase production of white blood cells and is your body's natural first line of defense against infections and infectious diseases. Vitamin C has also been known to reduce the duration of the common cold as well.
- Get Moving: Exercise does a body good. Not only does movement and weight training help to keep joints and muscles in shape, exercise is key to staying alert and mitigating stress. The impact of exercise on your immune response has been discussed in several articles including this one from Harvard University and could . Also, the Mayo Clinic recommends that adults get a minimum of 2.5 hours of moderate exercise each week.
- Rest: Getting enough sleep is often a luxury for busy professionals, but the more rest, the better. Sleep helps your body heal, repair, and recharge. Supplements such as Melatonin may help to induce relaxation and sleep.