Boosting your immune system – tips for everyday life
Daily stress, insufficient sleep and unfavourable circumstances provide an optimal environment in which pathogens can easily affect us. What can we do to support a healthy immune system and strengthen our defences? Here are some tips that may help you.
Healthy sleep – for a fantastic immune system
The importance of sufficient, high-quality sleep for our immune system cannot be overemphasised. If we don’t get enough sleep, our immune system is unable to fight off pathogens effectively. In addition to the length of sleep, the quality of sleep is also crucial. Therefore, create an optimal environment in your bedroom.
Avoid having a TV in your bedroom and minimise media consumption, including reading. Your sleep can also be adversely affected if you look at your smartphone for a long time before going to bed. In a nutshell – your bedroom should be dedicated to sleeping only.
Drinking alcohol in the evening can also significantly impair sleep by reducing the number of deep sleep phases.
A balanced diet – the best thing for the immune system
A healthy and balanced diet can help boost our immune system. In addition to eating enough fruit and vegetables, it is also advisable to ensure that you more eat fish and dairy products during the darker months of the year. These foods contain valuable vitamin D, which cannot be sufficiently produced by the body during the winter due to a lack of direct sunlight.
For some people, it may also be necessary to take dietary supplements during the winter months if they have an insufficient dietary intake of vitamins or a vitamin deficiency. In Switzerland, for example, vitamin D supplementation is generally recommended during the winter months.
Drink enough – that way, your immune system is never left high and dry
A healthy diet also goes hand in hand with sufficient fluid intake. Water is extremely important for smooth processes in the body, including the immune system. Alcohol, on the other hand, should be consumed with caution, as it can adversely affect the immune system in the usual amounts and thus increase the risk of colds and other infectious diseases.
Exercise – breathe fresh air into your immune system
Exercise is also extremely important for our immune system during autumn and winter. Regular physical activity strengthens our immune system. Even moderate exercise has a positive effect on our immune system. Swimming, jogging or even going for long walks in the fresh air are recommended and do us good.
However, it is important to remember that if you have a cold, it is better not to exercise and to rest instead. Rest is particularly important for patients with fever, as physical exertion could lead to dangerous myocarditis.
Relaxation – calming down for a wide-awake immune system
Daily stress adversely affects not just our well-being, but also our immune system. That’s why you should regularly take the time to consciously stop for breaks and reduce stress. The idea that constant exertion leads to better performance is a myth. In fact, it can have the opposite effect. Everyone should find out for themselves how they can best switch off, as we all have individual preferences. Here are some ideas to inspire you:
Immersion in warm water has a calming effect on the body and the mind. The warm water helps to relax our muscles and relieve tension. A bath with essential oils or bath essences can also stimulate the senses and have an aromatherapeutic effect. Visits to the sauna, on the other hand, promote circulation, cleanse the skin and can lead to deep relaxation. Both taking baths and visiting the sauna can reduce stress and convey a feeling of calm and relaxation.
A walk in the great outdoors is a wonderful way to relieve stress and calm the mind. The fresh air, the natural environment and the gentle movements when walking help to clear your head and focus directly on the present moment. Nature also has a calming effect on the senses and can reduce stress and worries. Regular walks outdoors can improve your mood, increase your concentration and boost your immune system.
Progressive muscle relaxation and autogenic training are two effective relaxation techniques in which particular muscle groups are deliberately tensed and then relaxed. This alternation between tension and relaxation helps to release physical tension and achieve deep relaxation throughout your body. These techniques can reduce stress, improve sleep quality, relieve muscle tension and increase your overall well-being.
Massages are not only relaxing, but they also have a variety of health benefits that can boost your immune system. Specific pressing and stroking movements release tension, stimulate circulation and relax the body. Using essential oils in massages can also have an additional positive effect. Aromatherapy, which works with various fragrances and essences, can stimulate the senses, reduce stress and create a relaxing atmosphere.
Laughter and optimism – also boost the immune system
Laughter and an optimistic mindset not only have a positive impact on our overall well-being, but also have a beneficial effect on our immune system. There are thus at least two good reasons to be in a good mood more often and to have a hearty laugh.
Boosting the immune system: Conclusion
There are a number of measures you can take to boost your immune system and support your body’s defences. Make sure you get sufficient high-quality sleep, eat a healthy and balanced diet with ample vitamin D, drink enough water and avoid excessive alcohol consumption.
Engage in regular physical activity and spend some time outdoors. Allow yourself some relaxing breaks and find out what will help you to switch off. Laugh more and stay optimistic. By following these tips, you can boost your immune system and stay healthy through autumn and winter.