Especially when the weather is cold, it is important to have strong defence mechanisms and a well-functioning immune system.
You can achieve this with a few steps and a sensible selection of foods in your diet.
The most important elements to strengthen your immune system are a balanced diet, sufficient exercise, the reduction of stress and sufficient sleep.
Which foods help my immune system?
- Ginger – Ideal as a food and thanks to the essential oil it contains, it is the ideal all-purpose remedy for inflammations and colds. Ginger tea is ideal in the cold season.
- Citrus fruits – Thanks to their high content of antioxidants and vitamin C, they are ideally suited to support the development and protection of your immune system.
- Kiwi – The ideal fruit for the defence against infections. The reason for this is the high proportion of potassium, vitamin K and vitamin C in this “power fruit”.
- Sunflower seeds – This food is also ideally suited for regulating the functions in the immune system. Thanks to numerous nutrients such as magnesium, phosphorus, vitamin B6 and vitamin E, these seeds are ideal as snacks between meals.
- Sweet Potato – Optimal for the renewal of mucous membranes and as prevention of colds. The reason for this is the nutrient beta-carotene.
How can I strengthen my immune system? – Nutrition
A balanced diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables and sufficient amounts of vitamins, trace elements and secondary plant substances is particularly recommended in the “disease season”.
If you are unsure which diet is sensible and whether you are sufficiently supplied with vitamins and nutrients, you can ask a doctor with a blood count to give you your current values.
Depending on the supply/their values, it can then be useful to replenish your depots with dietary supplements. This can be useful, for example, in the case of iron deficiency, magnesium deficiency or vitamin D deficiency.
Recovery through sleep
An important aspect for the regulation of bodily functions and the production of important hormones is to sleep sufficiently and restful. If you suffer from sleep problems, you can consult your doctor or pharmacist. Depending on your personal situation, a therapy can also be helpful – for example, after severe strokes of fate or with psychological problems and illnesses.
Stimulating metabolism thanks to regular exercise
Regular exercise (whether walking, swimming, strength training, cross-fit, …) promotes the metabolism and this helps to keep colds away. Sport can also help to relax and be more balanced. Thus it can contribute to the general well-being and thus to physical and mental fitness.
Reduce and avoid stress
If one is exposed to stress over a longer period of time (e.g. occupational stress, private worries), this causes the cortisol level to rise permanently. This leads to a weakening of the immune system. To avoid this, it is important to delegate tasks and to take time out consciously.
In addition, stress can be optimally reduced through popular endurance sports such as jogging, walking, swimming, dancing, tennis, squash, cycling and many others. Depending on the intensity and duration of the sports practised, this helps to reduce stress hormones. Another possibility to reduce stress is conscious awareness in everyday life.
Another meaningful possibility of active relaxation is progressive muscle relaxation according to Dr. Jacobson.