Thankful for an Immune System that Works Hard
It's that time of year again — flu season. And this year, we're also dealing with the added stress of avoiding COVID-19. So how can we best take care of ourselves and avoid getting sick?
First, let's give our immune system a round of applause and give it thanks for keeping us healthy. Second, learn some tips to help your immune system along when it's working hard to fight viruses and infections.
What Our Immune System Does for Us
Our immune system is our best line of defense against sickness. Taking care of our immune system by eating a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, and exercising regularly is essential. When our immune system is robust, we're less likely to get sick. When we do get sick, our immune system works hard to fight off the illness. A solid immune system can help us recover from sickness more quickly!
Tips to Help Keep Your Immune System Strong
You can help protect yourself from both the flu and COVID-19 by taking care of your immune system. Here are some tips for keeping your immune system strong:
Eat a Healthy Diet
Eating a healthy diet is one of the best things you can do for your overall health, and it also happens to be great for your immune system. When you eat a diet full of nutritious foods, you give your body the tools it needs to function at its best. This includes a strong and healthy immune system.
Get Adequate Sleep
There are many reasons why sleep is vital for the immune system. One of the most important reasons is that our bodies produce more cytokines during sleep. Cytokines are proteins that help to regulate immunity and fight off infections. Without enough sleep, our bodies produce fewer cytokines, leading to an increased risk of infection.
Exercising regularly is vital to the immune system for a few reasons. First, exercise helps to reduce stress levels. Stress can have all sorts of negative impacts on the body, including suppressing the immune system. So, by keeping stress levels down through exercise, you can help keep your immune system up and running correctly.
Managing stress is vital to the immune system for several reasons:
- When stressed, our bodies release cortisol and other hormones that can suppress the immune system. This leaves us more vulnerable to infection and illness.
- Chronic stress can lead to inflammation, linked to various health problems, including heart disease, cancer, and mental health disorders.
- Managing stress can help reduce the likelihood of developing chronic illnesses in the first place.
By controlling our stress levels, we can keep our immune system functioning at its best.
Wash Your Hands Regularly
One of the most important things you can do to protect your health is to wash your hands regularly. Hand washing is vital to the immune system because it helps remove harmful bacteria and viruses that can cause illness.
Washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds is the best way to remove these germs. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are also effective at killing bacteria and viruses. Sanitizing your hands regularly, especially before you eat or after you use the bathroom, can help keep you from getting sick.
Avoid Tobacco and Excessive Alcohol Consumption
There are several reasons why the immune system may decline, including tobacco and excessive alcohol consumption. Tobacco smoke contains thousands of chemicals that can damage the cells and tissues in the body, including those in the immune system. Alcohol consumption can also suppress the immune system, making it less able to fight off infections.
Get Vaccinated Against Infections
Vaccinations are vital to helping the immune system because they help the body build immunity to diseases. When vaccinating, people are exposed to a small amount of the disease-causing virus or bacteria. As a result, their bodies produce antibodies to fight off the infection. Over time, this process helps the body build up immunity to the disease, making it less likely for the person to get sick if exposed to the condition.
Advance ER Provides 24/7 Emergency Care
We are truly fortunate to have such amazing immune systems. By taking care of our bodies and giving our immune system the support it needs, we can stay healthy and avoid getting sick this Flu and COVID-19 season. For all your emergency care needs, Advance ER is here for you.
To request resources or learn more about our emergency services, please contact us online or by telephone at (214) 494-8222.