Your immune system protects you from bacteria, viruses, infectious diseases, fungi, parasites, and other pathogens. The immune system includes the tonsils, lymph system, spleen, thymus gland and bone marrow. It works in a coordinated manner, circulating white blood cells including B and T cells that scan for foreign invaders and then attack them. However, if you become run down, so does your immune system. Here are six ways to make sure it stays primed and strong:

1. Get Plenty of Sleep

A lack of sleep weakens the immune system, reducing T cells, melatonin and important proteins. Try and get at least seven hours of sleep per night.

2. Eat an Antioxidant-Rich Diet

Antioxidant-rich foods are an excellent way to boost the immune system while curbing free radical damage. Dark and leafy greens as well as brightly colored vegetables and fruits are great choices. Glutathione is a crucial antioxidant found in avocado, asparagus, parsley and whey protein. Other healthy antioxidant foods include blueberries, oily fish, bell peppers, sweet potatoes, cantaloupe, peaches, Brazil nuts, oatmeal, brown rice and sunflower seeds.

3. Vitamin D

Your immune system’s T cells work best when you have adequate levels of Vitamin D. If in doubt, get tested to see if you’re in a healthy range. Vitamin D can be obtained from safe sun exposure, fortified foods such as dairy products, and supplements.

4. Watch Stress Levels

Chronic stress is one of the biggest drains on immune system health. Activities like walking in nature, relaxing with a good book, taking a bath, meditation, positive thinking, prayer, yoga, journaling, getting a massage, or having lunch with a good friend can all help to lower stress levels. Try and do something that relaxes you on a daily basis.

5. Energy Medicine

A simple but powerful energy medicine exercise for immune system health is tapping the thymus gland. The thymus gland is located in the middle of the upper chest, and it is where your infection-fighting T cells are housed. Tapping this glands sends a signal to your immune system to do its job optimally. Try and tap it at least once per day, and more often if you feel a cold or illness coming on.

6. Exercise

Regular exercise can greatly enhance your natural T cell and antibody response. Whether you bicycle, jog, dance, do aerobics, or take a daily walk, regular physical activity can enhance immune system health.

Make these lifestyle changes now, and you’re likely to see an improvement in your immune system health very soon.

Staying healthy is important, as our staff of home care specialists works to ensure for patients. Maintaining a healthy mind and body is vital. If you are in need of home health aides, contact us now.