By Jennifer Broxterman, MS, RD and Lee Helland, MA
Let’s start with the hard truth.
You can’t fully control whether you catch a cold, the flu, or COVID-19.
You also can’t control how your body will react once it’s exposed to a pathogen.
There are many different factors that determine your body’s response. Some you can impact, like nutrient deficiencies. Others you can’t do anything about, like your age.
But even among the factors you can influence, no single tweak or “hack” can control such a complex system. (Short of a proven vaccine or drug therapy.)
No magical supplement, superfood, diet plan, or exercise routine can ensure you’ll stay healthy.
There is good news, though: When it comes to your immune system, your daily actions can make a meaningful difference.
By consistently practicing healthy behaviors, you can:
Plus, focusing on constructive behaviors might help you feel just a little bit more in control. And that could help ease the anxiety and stress that come with all the uncertainty.
Our suggestion: Prioritize the “big rocks,” or pillars, of a healthy lifestyle.
With all this in mind, we’ve created this immunity-focused infographic to give you (or your clients) a game plan for taking action.
Importantly, you don’t need to do everything we suggest in this infographic.
Eating protein at every meal is hard enough on its own, and your grocery store might be sold out of the kind you like right now. (You might also have less money for groceries than before.)
Some people have way less time to work out than they used to, since they’re busy homeschooling or working double shifts. Others have MUCH higher stress levels than before.
So pick and choose the strategies that make the most sense and feel doable to you right now. You can always incorporate others later.
And remember: There’s nothing wrong with starting small. That’s where great progress often begins.
11/26/2020 10:58:15 pm
The information provided is very useful
4/1/2022 03:15:43 pm
Very good article, thanks for sharing.
3/11/2023 12:44:56 pm
As a physician, I fully agree with the article's emphasis on prioritizing the "big rocks" of a healthy lifestyle to optimize immune function. While there is no magic supplement or diet plan that can guarantee immunity against pathogens, consistent healthy behaviors can make a meaningful difference in reducing exposure and susceptibility to illness. It's important to note that everyone's situation is different, and some strategies may be more feasible than others depending on factors like availability of resources and time constraints. However, even small changes can lead to significant progress over time. By focusing on whole, minimally processed foods, adequate protein, fruits and vegetables, regular movement, reduced smoking and alcohol consumption, adequate sleep, and stress management, individuals can help prepare their bodies to fight off foreign invaders and improve overall health. It's important to remember that there is no single hack or quick fix, but rather a commitment to consistent healthy habits over time that can make a meaningful impact on immune function.
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