At the Oaks, we know it’s important to maintain a healthy immune system. We offer a lifestyle that creates and promotes opportunities for socialization, stimulation, self-care, and rest. We also partner with Amedisys, if you live more independently they can help you with both recovery from sickness and staying healthy. There are also numerous ways you can naturally boost your immune system, without medications. Discover the seven ways we suggest to improve well-being.
Get Plenty of Sleep
It can be a challenge for seniors to sleep through the night but getting a full night’s sleep is very beneficial. According to the Mayo Clinic, “your body needs sleep to fight infectious diseases.” When you sleep, your body releases specific proteins and cytokines which help promote sleep and in turn help fight infections. So, if you can sleep in late or fit an afternoon nap into your schedule, your body will thank you!
Get Some Exercise
Regular exercise has so many benefits, it can help you get a better night’s sleep, stay in shape, decrease your risk of depression, and help your immune system to fight off diseases. We suggest strolling around the community daily, swimming, chair yoga, or joining a senior work-out class a few days out of the week. When you exercise, your body is more likely to flush bacteria out of your lungs and gut area, reducing your risk of contracting an airborne illness. Getting your heart rate up also causes your white blood cells to circulate more rapidly allowing your immune system to be more perceptive of diseases.
Make Chicken Soup
We have all heard about enjoying chicken noodle soup when you are sick. But did you know a bowl of soup can actually help you refrain from getting sick? According to a medical study from the University of Nebraska, chicken soup can be used as a remedy for symptomatic upper respiratory tract infections, very similar to the common cold. In other words, chicken soup has mild anti-inflammatory properties helping mitigate respiratory issues, such as congestion and coughing.
Put on Tea Time
Drinking tea has always been a great way to relax and promote healthy sleep, which is beneficial in its own way to helping the body get healthy. But, tea also contains alkyl-amines which naturally boost immune systems and deter from infections. There are also specific teas for various “sicknesses” such as antioxidants to help fight cancer or chamomile and peppermint tea to help with indigestion. Also, if you add lemon and honey to your tea, they act as natural immune boosters with nutrients known for fighting diseases, such as vitamin C!
Get Some Sun
The weather is finally warm enough to go out and enjoy it, but you get more than just fresh air when you spend some time outside. Catching some rays is a natural way to boost your immune system due to the vitamin D your skin absorbs. Although vitamin D is great for your immune system, too much sun can be dangerous. The ideal time to spend in the sunlight to absorb the vitamin is 15 to 20 minutes.
Eat More Yogurt
Yogurt is also a great way to get vitamin D and to strengthen your body’s immune system. There are also probiotics in yogurt which help your body fight the common cold and infections in your gastro intestines. So tomorrow for breakfast, substitute your bowl of cereal for yogurt with granola and help your body be healthier!
Crack a Smile
When you smile it releases endorphins, which helps to reduce stress and strengthen your body’s defense to diseases. Laughter is just as good if not better than smiling to help reduce your chances of getting sick. According to the National Institute of Health, being exposed to humor can strengthen your body’s immune system!
We hope these seven ways to boost your immune system help you in staying healthy. To learn more helpful tips for seniors, be sure to subscribe to our blog!