A healthy body is one key to a healthy immune system. Making long-term lifestyle changes that increase good habits and decrease destructive habits are ideal, but if you’re in a pinch to boost your immune system now, here’s some tips:
Wash your hands – A top way to protect yourself is to frequently wash your hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. At a minimum, wash your hands after using the restroom, during travel, after visiting health care facilities or taking care of someone who is sick, and right before you eat. Soap and water are the best way to eliminate germs but if it’s not available, alcohol-based hand sanitizer may be used.
Avoid touching your face – On average, most people touch their face 23 times per hour1. Touching your face is unfortunately, a largely unconscious and habitual behavior that can spread pathogens through your mouth, nose, and eyes. This ties back to continuously washing your hands, especially if you’re out in public touching door handles, counters, shopping carts, and other objects that other people touch.
Social Distancing –whenever you come in contact with anyone that is sick with the cold or flu, keeping your distance from an infected person can help stop the spread of airborne germs. The recommended distance is keeping 6-8 feet between you and another person.2
Cover your sneezes and coughs – Use a disposable tissue or the inside of your elbow each time your sneeze or cough. Then properly discard the tissue, wash your hands, and disinfect the area carefully.
Take immune boosting supplements – There is a multitude of supplements that support the immune system including:
- Hawaiian Spirulina®: 3 grams daily – Clinical research shows that spirulina boosts immunity by positively impacting antioxidant activity and immune variables in your body.†3
- Zinc: 15 to 30 mg daily – Zinc supports the immune system in multiple ways including fighting off free radicals.4
- Vitamin C: 1,500 mg daily – Vitamin C supports your immune system.5
Avoid sharing – Do not share drinking glasses or utensils, even with family members. Wash dishes frequently in hot, soapy water or in a dishwasher.
Reduce stress – Many studies have shown that stress can take a toll on your immune system and open you up to illnesses. Easy ways to reduce stress throughout the day include taking a walk outside, listening or dancing to music, watching your favorite show, taking deep breaths and meditating. Taking a break from watching the news and scrolling through social media may also help reduce stress triggers.
Rest, and get enough sleep – A good night’s sleep can help you feel refreshed and recharge your immune system – many experts recommend 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Make your bedroom a sleep sanctuary by removing electronics such as cell phones and other digital devices, regulating room temperature (if possible) to a comfortable 60-67 degrees, minimizing light interruption with blackout curtains, and adding white noise such as a fan or white noise machine, if desired.
Sunlight – Not only can feeling the sun on our skin boost our mood, but it can support the immune system by allowing our body to naturally create vitamin D, which can help the body fight off illnesses.6
Exercise – Regular exercise has a variety of benefits and among these is increasing your immunity. Aim for at least 30 minutes of exercise three to four times a week. Walking is a form of exercise accessible for most people and is easy on the joints. If you live in an area where you are able to, walk outside in nature for mental health benefits by breathing in fresh air, listening to birds and the wind, and ultimately, creating a sense of peace and calmness.
Drink plenty of fluids – Adults need eight 8-ounce glasses of fluid each day to stay hydrated. Avoid sugary drinks and consuming lots of caffeine, which can be dehydrating, and instead add fruit slices or mint to water to help you reach your hydration goal.
- Eat a colorful diet – Diets rich in phytonutrients and antioxidants give the immune system a boost. Produce like blueberries and broccoli are high in antioxidants as well as microalgae supplements such as Hawaiian Spirulina® and BioAstin® Hawaiian Astaxanthin®. In fact, astaxanthin has 6000 times more relative antioxidant activity than vitamin C and is 550 times stronger than Green Tea.7
Taking the time to engage in these and other immune boosting activities will not only help keep you -healthy but can improve the quality of your life by reducing stress. For specific health recommendations, please consult with your health care provider.
†These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
1. Kwok, YL., et al. (2015). “Face touching: a frequent habit that has implications for hand hygiene.” Am J Infect Control. 2015 Feb;43(2):112-4
2 .CDC.gov, Interim US Guidance for Risk Assessment and Public Health Management of Persons with Potential Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Exposures: Geographic Risk and Contacts of Laboratory-confirmed Cases
3. Park, H.J., et al. (2008). “A Randomized Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study to Establish the Effects of Spirlina in elderly Koreans.” Ann NutrMetab 2008; 52:322-328.
4. Powell, SR. (2000). “The antioxidant properties of zinc.” J Nutr. 2000 May;130(5S Suppl):1447S-54S
5. Gorton, HC. (1999). “The effectiveness of vitamin C in preventing and relieving the symptoms of virus-induced respiratory infections.” J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 1999 Oct;22(8):530-3.
6. Aranow, C. (2011). “Vitamin D and The Immune System.” J Investig Med. 2011 Aug; 59(6): 881–886.
7. Nishida, Y., et al. (2007). “Comparison of Astaxanthin’s Singlet Oxygen Quenching Activity with Common Fat and Water Soluble Antioxidants.” https://www.cyanotech.com/pdfs/bioastin/batl38.pdf