How to Boost Your Immune System Naturally

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How to Boost Your Immune System Naturally

You can’t take a pill or get a shot that suddenly improves your immune health, and you don’t need medicine to boost immune activity or maintain an optimal immune response.

A healthy immune system depends on the same lifestyle choices that support your energy and well-being, and they’re all natural.

Jaime Dodge, MD, and the team at Aletheia Integrative specialize in primary care, offering holistic therapies and personalized care to promote your immune system. However, you can take daily steps toward immune health by following four lifestyle guidelines.

1. Boost your nutrients

Your immune system must have adequate nutrition to function and stay healthy. Since it constantly fights bacteria, viruses, and other harmful organisms, it needs a steady supply of nutrients.

In addition to everyday nutrition, your immune system needs more than the recommended daily amount when you’re sick, injured, stressed, sleep-deprived, or engaged in intensive athletics.

Though a robust immune response depends on all the different nutrients, some are especially important. You must get enough protein, zinc, and vitamins C and D to support immune function. 

Other vitamins and minerals —  folate, iron, selenium, magnesium, and vitamins A, E, B6, and B12 — are also vital.

A well-balanced diet is the best way to get these nutrients as they’re naturally in many foods. However, if our personalized lab services reveal nutrient deficiencies, we can quickly restore them with infusion therapy and supplements.

2. Support your gut

Your gut has good bacteria that directly affect your immune system. The bacteria in your large intestine communicate with the immune system, regulating its function and activating cell growth.

Unfortunately, harmful (bad) bacteria also live in your gut. When bad bacteria outnumber good bacteria, your immune system weakens, making you vulnerable to illness and disease.

The natural way to support your gut is by consuming fiber and probiotics. Fiber from oats, beans, and fruits feeds bacteria, while probiotics contain live bacteria that increase the good microorganisms in your gut.

You can take probiotic supplements or add foods with live cultures to your daily meal plan. A few of the best probiotic foods include yogurt, sauerkraut, miso, and kimchi.

You don’t need to guess about the status of your gut. We can perform a gut health assessment, identify bacteria, and recommend how to improve the balance.

3. Engage in regular exercise

Exercise triggers many biological reactions, resulting in incredible health benefits, including:

  • Losing weight
  • Reducing stress
  • Improving your mood
  • Boosting your energy
  • Strengthening muscles and bones
  • Preventing health conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure

Exercise also fortifies your immune system, improving the activity of immune cells like antibodies and white blood cells and promoting immune cell production.

Aim to exercise five days a week for 30 minutes to optimize your immune strength. While you can engage in vigorous exercise like jogging, moderate activities like walking are also beneficial.

4. Get enough sleep

Lack of sleep makes your immune system sluggish and weak. Though researchers are still exploring what happens while you sleep, they know the immune system becomes more active and produces disease-fighting cells.

The sleep needed to support immune strength depends on your age. The current recommendations suggest getting the following amount of sleep each day

  • Up to 3 months: 14-17 hours
  • 4-12 months: 12-16 hours daily (including naps)
  • 1-2 years: 11-14 hours daily (including naps)
  • 3-5 years: 10-13 hours daily (including naps)
  • 6-12 years: 9-12 hours
  • 13-18 years: 8-10 hours
  • 18-60 years: 7-9 hours

Many teens and adults regularly fall short of sleep during the work week and then sleep in on the weekend. While that may improve your overall mood and energy, the lack of sleep still affects your health.

Without consistently getting a good night’s sleep, you're more likely to gain weight and develop chronic conditions like Type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure.

Signs your immune system needs help

Signs of a weak immune system include: 

  • Fatigue
  • Stomach problems (gas, diarrhea, and constipation)
  • Muscle aches
  • Slow healing wounds
  • Frequent colds
  • Recurring infections

Contact our caring team with any questions or concerns about your immune system. We’re here to help. Call Aletheia Integrative or use our online booking feature today to schedule an appointment and receive holistic care to improve your immune health.