Flu Season 101: Six Tips for a Healthy, Balanced Immune System
(BPT) - Flu season is here, and this year, there are continued concerns and uncertainties and even more reason to be prepared. In the United States, flu season lasts from October to May, and there’s no better time to focus on strengthening your immune system to help mitigate against flu and other viruses.
Traditionally people look for ways to boost, but a healthy immune system is all a matter of balance. Only a healthy, balanced immune system can protect against the threat of virus and other health concerns associated with the fall and winter seasons.
How do you achieve a balanced immune system? Follow these six tips to keep you immune healthy now, during flu season, and all year long!
Look for opportunities to reduce stress. Lowering your stress level is crucial and may be one of the most important changes you can make. Consider daily meditation or a 10-minute yoga flow, either to start or end your day. Look for opportunities to build some downtime into your day whether it’s a walk on your lunch break or mid-day cup of tea. Finding time to unwind is so important and will make a difference in how you feel and enhance your immune system.
Make time for exercise. Exercise increases metabolic activity, mitochondria functions, better absorption from food, and better blood flow that increases nutrition supply to cells and detoxification processes on the cell and organ level. With better cell nutrition and energy supply, all organs work better, including the brain. Exercise helps to reduce stress and your immune system to perform at a high level. You should try to get in at least 30 minutes a day of moderate cardio like walking, swimming, biking or running. If you need a nudge, set a reminder in your phone or smartwatch to make sure you move!
Get enough sleep. When it comes to your health, sleep plays an important role. Without sufficient sleep, your body makes fewer cytokines which are a type of protein that targets infection and inflammation to effectively create an immune response. Additionally, chronic sleep loss makes the flu vaccine less effective by reducing your body’s ability to respond. So, make sure you get 7-8 hours of sleep each night to strengthen your defenses.
Balance, don’t boost, your immune system. Incorporate a daily immune support supplement to help keep your immune system balanced throughout the year. An all-natural immune supplement such as del-IMMUNE V Daily will replicate the intestine’s natural immune function which is to turn on and off when needed. During flu season when the threat of virus is high and throughout the year when bacteria, environmental agents and stress are a concern, you may want to consider stronger immune formulas such as del-IMMUNE V Defense.
Practice good hygiene. Hygiene is high on the list of priorities these days, and for good reason. Washing your hands is a small activity that can lead to big health benefits, as well as general cleaning and disinfecting of your home and work spaces. Here are some others:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick and stay home when you are under the weather.
- Continue to mask up to protect yourself and others.
- Cover your mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
Take time to get a flu vaccine. The CDC recommends that everyone 6 months and older get a yearly flu vaccine by the end of October to help protect against flu viruses.
Vaccination is especially important for people at higher risk of serious flu complications including young children, pregnant women, those with certain chronic conditions, and people 65 years and older. However, everyone’s situation is unique so discuss vaccination with your doctor to help make the best decision for you.
The benefits of a balanced immune system far outweigh the risk of flu, and adopting these small changes and habits will make a big difference. But, keep in mind that strengthening your immune system should always be a priority. So, start being immune healthy today, so that your healthy, balanced immune system will be prepared for flu season.