5 Ways to Boost Your Immune System This Holiday Season
The holidays are officially upon us! This means parties, dinners, decking the halls and so much more. Like any busy family, the last thing you and your loved ones need during this joyous time is to come down with a cold or flu that stops you from enjoying what matters most. Here are 5 ways to boost your immune system this holiday season.
Indulging is OK for a day but not for an entire season. Our bodies weren’t made to process large feasts and sumptuous sweets every day so be mindful about what you put into your body. Be sure to focus on lean protein, fresh fruits and veggies, healthy fats and whole grains. Eat well-rounded meals as often as you can so that when it’s time to indulge at a party or gathering, you can feel good and not guilty about it.
Care For Your Gut
“A huge proportion of your immune system is actually in your GI tract,” says Dan Peterson, assistant professor of pathology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Armed with this knowledge, it’s of the utmost importance that we care for our guts during the holiday season. Make sure to eat less sugar, get enough sleep, add fermented foods such as yogurt and kimchi to your diet and take a probiotic. Adding a probiotic to your daily routine can support a healthy gut microbiome and may prevent gut inflammation and other intestinal problems.
Elderberries are all the rage on the natural healthcare scene and there’s science to back this trend up.
According to a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study found in the US National Library of Medicine’s archives, patients who received 15 ml of elderberry syrup four times a day for 5 days saw their symptoms were relieved on average 4 days earlier and use of rescue medication was significantly less than those who were taking the placebo. Elderberry extract seems to offer an efficient, safe and cost-effective treatment for influenza. You can find dried elderberries, gummies, syrup and more either online or in your local health food store.
Rest and Exercise
Getting the sleep your body needs is vitally important but in America, 35.3% of adults report getting less than 7 hours of sleep each night. Follow these few tips to increase your chances of a better night’s sleep: stick to a schedule, create a bedtime routine, sleep in a cool room, no screens 2 hours before bedtime, exercise during the day.
Speaking of exercise, not only will exercise help you sleep more soundly, it will also build your endorphins, which will elevate your mood and boost your energy. Additionally, physical activity may help flush bacteria out of the lungs and airways. This may reduce your chance of getting a cold, flu, or other illness. Get out there and get moving! If exercise isn’t already part of your routine, start with walking. A brisk, 20 minute walk each day can help you feel worlds better.
Get Your Flu Shot
The flu has resulted in up to 49 million illnesses each year in the United States since 2010. Each year, on average, five to 20 percent of the United States population gets the flu. It is estimated that the flu results in 31.4 million outpatient visits and more than 200,000 hospitalizations each year. With these statistics, getting a flu shot is your best bet for a healthy season.
If you do end up feeling less than spectacular, VIP Urgent Cares are here for you. From colds, the flu, respiratory illness, viruses, sore throat, cough and more, we’re standing by and ready to treat whatever may come your way.
When doctor’s offices are closed during the holidays and emergency rooms are extremely busy; remember VIP Urgent Care is open. VIP Urgent Care is the most comprehensive independent provider of urgent care services in the Coachella Valley. We’re open Monday through Friday, on weekends, and holidays. Call (760) 674-1923 for Palm Desert, or (760) 969-5999 for Palm Springs to schedule an appointment.
Always consult your physician before beginning any exercise program. This general information is not intended to diagnose any medical condition or to replace your healthcare professional.