Boosting Your Immune System
Fall is upon us! Fall and winter are typically the most active flu seasons. This year, the normal danger of the flu is compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic. Protecting yourself from these viruses is paramount. Phelps LaClair is committed to healthy living. Our clients in Phoenix, Chandler, Mesa, Scottsdale, and the surrounding areas, are also concerned about health. Boosting your immune system is a great place to start to avoid becoming sick in the first place.
Our bodies have been blessed with systems to fight and prevent disease. While no one can guarantee that you will never get sick, there are things you can do to strengthen your immune system and improve your chances of staying healthy, even during the cold and flu season.
As of now, there is no vaccine available for the novel coronavirus. Dr. Anthony Fauci has stated that a vaccine for COVID-19 may not be available for several months. But there are vaccines that can produce an immune reaction to the flu. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), most flu vaccines are effective against three or four strains of influenza. This means that the strains forecasted to be the most prevalent will be targeted.
Contrary to popular belief, vaccines don’t give you the flu. They introduce an inactivated form of the virus, or even a single gene from the virus. This causes an immune response that produces antibodies against that strain. But they can also induce side effects that may be harmful to certain age groups and people in poor health. Generally, muscle aches and fever are the most common side effects. It is important to consult your doctor if you experience any of these, because these symptoms may also indicate COVID-19.
Food is one of the best means of boosting your immune system. Nearly everyone has heard the phrase, “you are what you eat.” When you eat the right foods in the right amounts and proportions, you are much more likely to reap the benefits of good health. The staples of every diet consist of protein, fats and carbohydrates.
Protein builds and repairs body tissue. It also enables your immune system to produce antibodies and fight infection. Beef, fowl, fish, and beans are all good sources of protein. When you do eat beef or fowl, choose the leanest cuts, and eliminate the skin of chicken and turkey. Saturated fat is more likely to depress your immune system. Healthy fats are found in olive oil, fish, avocados and coconuts, among others. You need these kinds of fats to help your immune system, but like all things, moderation is key.
Carbohydrates are essential for good health, but the carbs found in processed foods can be harmful to your health. Reducing or eliminating refined sugar is one of the best things you can do for your body. Refined sugar is found in almost all processed food, so avoid those sugary snacks and drinks if you want to increase your resistance to disease. On the other hand, fresh fruits and vegetables are very good for your immune system and your entire wellbeing. The sugars in fruit are more easily digestible and they contain vitamins and antioxidants that give energy and protection to your cells. Plus, fresh fruit helps curb junk food cravings.
Water is essential to life. As we have stated in several of our blog posts, staying hydrated will give you more energy and increase your immune system responses. Consuming fermented drinks and foods will add probiotics to your digestive system. Probiotic supplements are good, too. Probiotics attack and kill bad germs and help to build your immunity to disease by making your digestion more effective in transferring nutrients to your body.
Jason Bourne learned a good lesson: rest is a weapon. In our active lives, we tend to suppress our bodies’ natural need for sleep. Adult men need about eight hours of sleep each night; women need nine hours. During sleep, our body repairs itself, processes the events of the day, solidifies memory, and recharges for the next day’s activities. Waking up refreshed is one of the best feelings you can have.
Another way to de-stress and refresh is through exercise. A half hour of moderate exercise five days a week is really good for your physical and emotional health. Exercise stimulates every system in your body, including your immune system. In our sedentary work culture, we have lost the benefits of continuous movement. Incorporating a regular exercise program into your lifestyle will yield better results in every area of your life.
Planning for a Better Life
Phelps LaClair has been helping people to plan for a better life for over forty years. As a premier estate planning law firm in the Phoenix area, we know the value of health. Premature aging, disability and incapacitation are not necessary. There are ways to remain healthy into your golden years. Boosting your immune system as a way of life is one thing everyone can do. For peace of mind and better financial health, give us a call for a free, no obligation consultation to discuss your estate planning goals and needs. Our firm is relationship-centered—call us today, and let’s walk the road of healthy, stress-free living together. You will be glad you did.