Stay well with these healthy tips.
Now, more than ever, it is important to protect your immune system. The good news is that you don’t have to go to your medicine cabinet to find solutions that will boost your immune system and help you and your family stay healthy. There are simple and affordable things you can incorporate into your daily routine that will allow you to reduce stress and inflammation so that your body feels better now and is equipped to fend off disease. You can use these tips to set an example for your kids and help set them up for a lifetime of healthy living.
1. Eat inflammation-fighting foods.
When your body is injured or exposed to harmful substances, your body’s immune system reacts by triggering inflammation. While this is a natural process that is meant to help fix damage, chronic inflammation can put your immune system into overdrive. You can support your immune system by eating foods that fight inflammation. Fortunately, there are a wide variety of helpful foods to choose from.
- Olive oil.
- Strawberries, cherries, oranges, and blueberries.
- Fattw to boosty fish, including salmon, tuna and sardines.
- Spinach, kale and collards.
Simply incorporating more fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats into your diet can help reduce inflammation and boost your immune system. If your kid is a picky eater, experiment with different options.
2. Stay away from starchy foods.
Just as some foods can fight inflammation, others can cause it. That is why your diet is the place to start making adjustments if you are concerned about your immune system. Here are some common foods that you will want to stay away from in order to stay healthy:
- Sugar and high-fructose corn syrup.
- Vegetable oil.
- Refined carbohydrates.
- Processed meats.
While processed foods usually provide a quick and easy snack, they aren’t necessarily nourishing. Work with your kids to develop a taste for natural foods early on and help build a strong immune system.
3. Incorporate herbs that boost immunity.
As you make the move towards eating healthier, you can also incorporate certain herbs into your recipes and daily routine that can further improve your immune system. Garlic is an excellent immune booster that goes great with practically any food. Start chopping fresh garlic and sauteeing it with your meats and cooked vegetables. Ginseng, echinacea, and green tea are also all known for their inflammation-fighting properties. Look for teas that contain these ingredients and don’t have caffeine. You can mix up an ice tea and lemonade drink that the kids can enjoy throughout the summer.
4. Exercise regularly.
Keep in mind that exercise doesn’t have to be strenuous, especially not on a daily basis. Something as simple as taking a walk or playing tag can help reduce stress, which in turn fights inflammation. Exercise also promotes better circulation, which allows vital immune system cells to move through the body as needed so that they can effectively carry out their jobs. Regular exercise can also help fight obesity, which presents another challenge to the immune system. Maintaining a healthy weight improves practically every aspect of your and your family’s health.
5. Get enough sleep.
As you sleep, your body goes to work restoring and repairing your body. If you aren’t getting an adequate amount of sleep, you are putting additional wear and tear on your body. For kids, sleep allows them to grow and stay alert during school. While doctors typically recommend at least eight hours a night, it is important to listen to your body. You may be an individual who requires up to 10 hours. Also, be sure to establish a sleep routine. Going to bed and getting up at the same time every day can help your body develop a cycle that creates a natural sleep rhythm. This will make it easier for everyone to fall asleep and wake up feeling rested every morning.
6. Practice yoga.
Practicing yoga is a great way to improve your emotional, mental, and physical health. It focuses on breathing and mindfulness, which helps lower stress hormones while also improving your respiratory system and removing toxins from your body. Combining breathing and movement also helps to carry oxygenated blood throughout your body. Fortunately, there are plenty of online instructional videos and apps that can help you start practicing yoga from the comfort of your own home without having to spend a dime. Get the whole family involved for a fun activity that gets everyone moving.
7. Start meditating.
Meditating for just five minutes a day can help improve your overall health and boost your immune system. The simple act of clearing your mind or following a guided meditation that makes you more aware of your body and focuses on breathing can reduce stress and anxiety and calm your body. Many schools start the day with guided meditation. This is something you can carry into the summer and make a part of the family routine.
8. Take care of your oral health.
Your oral health is directly tied to your overall health. The bacteria that accumulates in your mouth and causes decay and gum disease can also travel through your body and affect other systems and organs. This is especially true in people who already suffer from chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease. To protect your oral health, make sure that you are brushing twice a day for two minutes each time and flossing daily. The same rules apply to your kids, so work to set a good example and make oral health a part of their routine. While we are only open for dental emergencies at the moment, we recommend you visit your dentist for regular check-ups when we reopen to maintain optimum oral health.
Fortunately, there are things you can do to support your and your kids’ immune systems and ward off disease and infections. Even making small changes to your family routine and diet can provide big rewards. At Spinnaker Pediatrics, we are here to help you and your family enjoy better oral health and overall health.