BOOST YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM NOW

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YOUR FOURFOLD PATH TO BETTER IMMUNE HEALTH

LEARN TO MANAGE STRESS Lower your stress response, improve your immune function

Stress means two main things: the perception of a threat on the one hand, and the body's response to it, on the other. Sensing a threat sets off an automatic response system, known as the fight-or-flight response that helps you meet a threat or flee from it. A stressful event triggers a sudden hormonal response including adrenaline and cortisol. This speeds the heartbeat and increases blood flow to the muscles and brain mobilizing fat and especially sugar for quick energy and attention. The stress response can be lifesaving, but it was meant to solve short-term, life-threatening problems.

Prolonged or repeated arousal of the stress response, can have harmful physical consequences, including heart disease and depression and decreased resistance to both acute infectious illness . High levels of cortisol interfere with normal sleep patterns, contribute to the breakdown of healthy muscle and increase blood sugar levels.

The essential first step to managing stress is recognizing the difference between your own internal mind/body stress response and external stress triggers, such as work, and relationships.

SUGAR IMPAIRS YOUR IMMUNE RESPONSE Enjoy in moderation

Sugar triggers inflammation. Sugar suppresses the immune system. Excess sugar consumption over hours and days increases the chances of coming down with a cold or flu like illness. Excess sugar over months and years increases the risk of diabetes, heart disease, cancer and early death. Eating a balanced whole foods diet that minimizes processed grains such as bread, wheat and pasta helps keep your sugar consumption at a healthy level. Eliminating processed packaged foods with added sugar is also required. Soft drinks and sugar laden candies of course need to be minimized. So read your labels and know what you are putting in your body.  

SLEEP SUPPORTS A HEALTHY IMMUNE RESPONSE
 Make good sleep a habit

Sleep deprivation is common. Trouble falling asleep. Waking up in the middle of the night, sometimes more than once. Unable to get back to sleep. What a drag! Sleeping pills mess with your brain and have dangerous side effects. Avoid them.

Poor sleep interferes with proper immune system functioning and increases your risk of coming down with a cold or flu like illness. Poor sleep is also associated with the usual list of common life shortening degenerative diseases -- diabetes, heart disease and cancer as well as Alzheimer’s.Poor sleep is mainly a bad habit. Something you can train yourself out of. Regular bed times, TV and computers off -- better yet, keep them out of the bedroom. 7-9 hours a night works for most.

VITAMINS AND MINERALS COME TO THE RESCUE 
The Right Immune Boosters

The well known vitamins A, D and C and the mineral zinc each have excellent research behind them. Thousands of scientific studies show their ability to help your immune system fight infections.

You get vitamin D from the sun in the spring and summer. It’s found in salmon and full fat dairy such as cheese and butter. You receive the important active retinol form of vitamin A in organ meats and full fat dairy. Both of these are fat soluble vitamins. Most of us need enough healthy fats -- from nuts, seeds, oil, avocados, full fat dairy and meat from healthy animals so we can benefit from these all-important vitamins.

Zinc is found in cells throughout the body and is needed for the body's immune system to work. Find it in oysters, beef, lamb, pumpkin seeds, squash, nuts, dark chocolate, pork, chicken and beans.

Get your vitamin C from a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, especially peppers and both citrus and tree fruits..