Our immune system comprises a network of cells, tissues, and organs that helps protect us from viruses, fungi, or bacteria and fight off sickness or infections. In addition, your body will develop antibodies after encountering any of these germs to protect you from getting sick from them again. Unfortunately, this vital component of our overall health weakens over time. Thankfully, there are ways that you can protect and boost our aging immune system.
Here are 6 Tips for Enhancing Your Aging Immune System
1. Get Plenty of Sunshine
Sunlight has many benefits, including increased Vitamin D production in your body and an overall positive mood. Vitamin D is essential for bone health and nerve and muscle functions and has significant anti-inflammatory properties. Doctors recommend 10 to 15 minutes per day of sun exposure around noon when the sun is at its strongest will produce the recommended amount of Vitamin D. You will still be able to absorb Vitamin D with sunscreen, so don’t forget to apply some.
2. Stay Active and Exercise
Countless benefits to your overall health come from exercising. Regarding your aging immune system, regular exercises, such as walking or yoga, are essential in keeping it strong and healthy. When your body is active, it increases your heart rate, pumping blood, including white blood cells, throughout your body. Instead of having a few white blood cells in one section of the body, these infection-fighting cells move throughout your entire body and continue for up to three hours post-exercise.
3. You Are What You Eat
A well-balanced diet will always play a significant role in keeping our minds and bodies healthy. Certain foods can undeniably benefit an aging immune system. Consider adding these superfoods to your meal plans:
- Oily Fish
- Leafy Greens (Kale, Spinach)
- Sweet Potatoes
- Sunflowers Seeds (Low Salt)
4. Water Does A Body Good
Water is our most essential need. Beyond quenching your thirst, it plays a pivotal role in your body’s function. Concerning its effects on your immune system, water primarily aids in flushing and ridding your body of bacteria and toxins that can cause infections. It also is integral in keeping the body hydrated, which aids in blood circulation and supports the lymphatic system.
5. Reset with Proper Relaxation
When stressed, our body produces cortisol, which helps regulate blood pressure and blood sugar while reducing inflammation. However, if too much cortisol is produced, it can increase inflammation in the body and weaken your immune system. So, take the time to rest your mind and body and bring everything to a calm and relaxed state. This will help to bring balance back to your immune system as well as your overall health.
6. Good Night’s Sleep
The National Institute on Aging states that older adults need 7-9 hours of sleep daily. Getting enough sleep not only helps us recharge, but it is also when our body gets to work on some self-maintenance. For example, while at rest, our body repairs tissue and fights off germs and infections. Without it, your immune system weakens and becomes susceptible to sickness and disease.
A Plan to Manage Your Aging Immune System
Maintaining and improving your health is too important not to have a plan of action in place. For example, Plattduetsche Home Society has a dedicated and knowledgeable staff to provide you with the level of personal care assistance you need.
If you or a loved one is interested in learning more about the benefits of assisted living and what Plattduetsche Home Society has to offer, contact us today!