10 Ways to Boost Your Immune System this Year

The new year is an ideal time to set goals that will lead you to live a healthier life. Something that can have a big impact is to boost your immune system. With a stronger immune system, you’ll reduce the likelihood you fall sick and recover from illness faster. You can start immediately with these simple actions.

1. Wash Your Hands Regularly

Develop the habit of washing your hands periodically. This will prevent any microbes on your hands from finding their way into your body through your nose, mouth, and eyes when you touch your face. Even when these microbes don’t make you sick, they can strain your immune system. Most importantly, wash your hands with warm water and soap before cooking and eating, after using the bathroom, and whenever you return home.

2. Quit Smoking

There are numerous reasons to quit smoking in the new year, including that smoking makes your immune system less effective at fighting infections. Plus, it can make you more prone to certain autoimmune conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis.

3. Stay Hydrated

Your immune system will be able to work much more efficiently if you’re well hydrated. When you have enough water in your body, your blood is able to reach the places that need oxygen and it can flush out any microbes and toxins that could cause an infection. Hydration also contributes to organ function, mood, focus, and energy levels — all of which have a knock-on effect on your immune system.

Bear in mind that alcohol will make you dehydrated. In addition to limiting your consumption, make sure you drink plenty of water whenever you do drink. Another thing that can make you dehydrated is smoking — which is another reason to quit.

4. Sleep Enough

For your immune system to be at its best, you need plenty of rest. Start a sleep routine to ensure you receive at least seven or eight hours a night. It can help to have regular bedtimes and wake-up times along with an evening routine that includes a relaxing activity before you go to sleep — nothing that involves screens that emit blue light.

5. Use Essential Oils

Certain essential oils naturally support your immune system in multiple ways, as they contain potent substances from plants. The benefit of essential oils is that these active ingredients are extra concentrated. You can use essential oils in your daily routine in multiple ways, including by adding a few drops to your bath, massaging them into your skin, or adding them to a diffuser in your bedroom to help you sleep at night.

6. Exercise on a Daily Basis

Movement can stimulate your body to produce more white blood cells, which fight infection. Find activities you enjoy and exercise for at least 30 minutes a day. There’s no need to always go to the gym for a workout — moderate exercise like hiking and yoga are also effective.

7. Reduce Stress

Closely linked to immune health is stress. When you’re rundown or anxious, your immunity suffers — particularly when the stress is prolonged. Some stress is unavoidable, but there are things you can do to keep it in check. This includes many actions already on this list, like sleeping enough, exercising, and using essential oils.

8. Receive Your Flu Shot

Give your immune system some extra support by receiving your flu shot. You need an annual shot because different strains circulate each year. Even if you have no health conditions that mean you’re at higher risk, it’s worth receiving a shot because no one is free from complications — especially if you’re unlucky enough to be infected by two illnesses at the same time.

9. Eat a Balanced Diet

It’s important to nourish your body to keep it strong and to provide your immune system with all the nutrients it needs. Although you may crave foods high in fat and sugar, you’ll ultimately feel much better if you choose healthy snacks and eat balanced meals.

In particular, make sure you’re consuming a full range of vitamins by selecting fruits and vegetables in a variety of colors. Blueberries, pomegranates, and other superfoods are especially high in vitamin C and other antioxidants that help your immune system fight free radicals and keep inflammation in check.

Another group of foods that can boost your immune system are those rich in probiotics. Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that aid digestion and prevent harmful bacteria from colonizing in your gut and creating extra work for your immune system. Anything fermented contains plenty of probiotics — this includes yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, and kimchi. To see results, you’ll need to eat probiotics regularly to provide your gut with a steady supply of beneficial bacteria.

A few other foods that should be part of your diet include garlic, green tea, and echinacea (you can find this in many herbal teas). All these have been shown to play a role in fighting off the common cold. However, if you’ve already fallen sick and want to give your immune system a boost, your best bet is some homemade chicken soup.

10. Take Supplements

If you’re concerned your diet may be lacking any essential vitamins or minerals, consider taking a daily supplement. Some are particularly excellent for boosting the immune system. For instance, zinc can help prevent you from falling sick from respiratory viruses, whereas a multivitamin containing vitamins C, D, and B12 may help reduce your recovery time. The most important vitamin, though, is likely vitamin D. It has a role in maintaining a healthy immune system, but you may receive insufficient amounts from sunlight during the winter. Finally, if you prefer, you can also take supplements for some of the above foods, including garlic, echinacea, and probiotics.

Of all the above, the best way to boost your immune system has to be using essential oils. It’s easy to fit essential oils into your daily routine and you’ll see numerous benefits. Find scents you love in blends specifically designed to boost the immune system at LaCura. Check out the full range in our online store.

About the author, Liat Chiprut

Liat Chiprut is a Functional Medicine Practitioner and licensed pharmacist. As an essential oil expert, Liat spent years researching and training on the root cause of disease and how to prevent illness and heal the body naturally. Her mission is creating new blends and helping all those that want to heal naturally have the information and products to do so.