Boosting your immune system can be done simply. For some it may require a little extra inner strength. Habits take 30 days to change, so if you can persevere your body will thank you. Here are 10 simple steps you can follow on a regular basis for a stronger immune system.
1. Eat natural foods for a strong immune system
Eat foods in as close to their natural state as possible. Foods that are refined often have questionable ingredients (like food additives, salt, sugar and fat). These additives often remove valuable nutrients (like vitamins, minerals, and fiber) and always increase the cost of the food.
"Eat foods that strengthen your immune system"
Eat a wide variety of foods. By not focusing on any particular food, you can obtain nutrients that may be essential but are poorly understood. Foods additives and preservatives are known to cause a buildup in your own body, this could be the cause of food allergies or toxicities.
2. Intermittent fasting is essential
Humans adapted to regular periods of inadvertent fasting. For millions of years, our ancestors were exposed to sessions of no food. Our bodies adapted to need that method of eating and feasting. Eating too much, too often, and the wrong food has become a first world problem.
The “too often” is what really gets us into trouble. By chronically exposing the cells to insulin and blood glucose, our cells become insulin resistant, which means they become “deaf” to insulin “knocking on the door” of the cell membrane. Eating too often results in elevated insulin and blood glucose. This is the beginning of disease. The domino effect has begun and leads to many diseases and accelerated aging.
Our ancestors might be without food for a few days when Nature says “you better get lean, mean, smart, and fast enough to find something to eat; or you are going to die.” Fasting induces a remarkable regeneration, rejuvenation, detoxification, anti-inflammatory stage that restores our health. Take one day a week and consume nothing but water.
If you need to lose weight, take 2 or 3 consecutive days at week and consume nothing but water. Have greater gaps between your last evening meal and your first morning meal, or “break fast”. While many people ask how to build their immune systems, data on intermittent fasting strongly supports that it can help build a stronger immune system.
"Remarkable regeneration, rejuvenation, detoxification, and anti-inflammatory changes happen in our body with intermittent fasting."
You will be dazzled at what intermittent fasting can do for your health. I was one of the 60 million prediabetic people in America, despite following a healthy lifestyle. A few weeks of fasting one day a week and my fasting blood glucose dropped from the dangerous range of 100 to the ideal range of 67. Try it. If you have a medical condition, then always work with your doctor.
3. Seek out nutrient-dense foods for your immune system
Maximize your intake of life-giving foods, including fresh vegetables, whole grains, legumes, fruit, low fat meat (turkey, fish, chicken) and clean water. Hormone free dairy products, especially yogurt, can be valuable if you do not have milk allergies or lactose intolerance.
4. Go for quality over quantity
Quality of weight rather than quantity of weight is often overlooked. Balance your calorie intake with expenditure so that your percentage of body fat is reasonable. How much you weigh is not nearly as crucial as the percent of fat in the body. Most nutritionists agree that too much fat stored in the body (obesity) is a real killer. Reducing body fast is well-documented as a method on how to boost your immune system.
5. Eat a plant-based diet rich in color
Overwhelming evidence points out the benefits of a plant based diet. Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, seaweeds, mushrooms, and herbal spices should make up 60-100% of your diet. If you have a choice, always go for the color in these foods. Pigmented potatoes are far healthier than white potatoes. Deep coloring in the fruits and vegetables demonstrates powerful phytochemicals for improving your health.
6. Use super supplements that are well-tested
When asked how to build the immune system, I am often asked about supplements. Use supplements in addition to, rather than instead of, good food. Get your nutrients primarily with a fork and spoon. Do not place an over-reliance on vitamins to provide optimal nourishment. Supplements (such as ImmunoPower™ which contains over 35+ double-tested ingredients) can provide minerals that are missing in our diet, vitamins that are removed in processing, bolster our nutrient intake beyond “surviving” (RDA) into “thriving” levels, and help us to better tolerate the myriad of toxins found in our 21st century planet.
7. Shop the perimeter of grocery store
On the outside of your grocery store you will find fresh fruits, vegetables, bread, fish, chicken and dairy. Once you venture into the deep dark interior of the grocery store, you will find that the nutrient content of the foods diminishes greatly AND prices go way up.
Organic produce is raised without pesticides and may be valuable in helping certain sensitive individuals. However, organic produce is unavailable or unaffordable for many people. Don’t get terribly concerned about having to consume organic produce. As a guideline, produce that cannot be peeled (like watermelon or bananas) should be soaked for 5 minutes in a solution of one gallon lukewarm clean water with 2 tablespoons of vinegar, which will remove most pesticide residue.
8. If a food will not rot or sprout, throw it out
Your body cells have similar biochemical needs to a bacteria or yeast cell. Many of us remember the images of a fast-food hamburger that had not attracted mold after about 10 years. Think about it: if bacteria is not interested in your food, then what makes you think that your body cells are interested? Foods that have a shelf life of a millennium are not going to nourish the body. Foods that cannot begin sprouting or sustain bacterial growth life, will have a similar effect in your body.
9. Healing spices can boost your health
There are herbs that grandmother used in the kitchen to make the food taste better. Many of those same herbs have now been scientifically endorsed to be powerful and safe natural medicines: turmeric, curry, mustard, black pepper, hot pepper, cinnamon, all spice, cardamom, garlic, ginger, sage, parsley, rosemary, thyme. Use these herbs frequently and often, replace standard American salt, fat, and sugar to make your food taste better and dramatically boost your body’s health.
10. Essential nutrients to boost your immune system
We need to recognize the priority placed on essential nutrients. We can live weeks without food, a few days without water and only a few minutes without oxygen. Keep in mind the relative importance of these essential nutrients.
Oxygen and water form the basis of human life. Protein, carbohydrate, fiber and fat form the next level of importance. Vitamins and minerals are the essential micronutrients required for health.
Above these essential substances are two levels of quasi (meaning “as if it were”) nutrients. Just a few conditionally essential nutrients include; Coenzyme-Q10, carnitine, EPA and GLA (fatty acids). There are many more.
Some people may require these nutrients in the diet during certain stressful phases of their lives. Minor dietary constituents (MDCs) include a wide variety of plant compounds that have shown remarkable anti-cancer and health-promoting abilities.
Just a few of these are; indoles in the cabbage family, lycopenes in tomatoes, allicin in garlic, immune stimulants in sea vegetables and others make up this new and exciting category. Eating a wide variety of unprocessed plant foods will help to insure adequate intake of these quasi-nutrients.
11. Exercise daily
Getting regular daily exercise will do many wonderful things for your body. Exercise improves circulation, gets the heart pumping, builds muscle, relieves stress and helps you sleep better. Always work with your doctor before starting an exercise program.
12. Reduce stress
Stress always has a negative impact on your health. If you struggle with stress or anxiety, try improving your diet, get some exercise and try meditating. A stressed body cannot function efficiently and will eventually lead to illness and other degenerative diseases.
These are easy steps and when you understand how to boost your immune system, you will see an improvement in your overall health. None of these items can be done in isolation. They should be part of an overall health improvement program. Always work with your health professional.