Lifestyle

How to Boost Your Immunity to Fight Winter Bugs

“Better safe than sorry!” That’s one saying that is always relevant, especially during winter bug outbreaks. Today, here are five tips from the FizzUp trainer to boost your immunity and protect you against harsh winter conditions.

1 | BOOST YOUR IMMUNITY BY STAYING ACTIVE

As everyone knows, exercise keeps you in good health. Don’t let your fitness fly out the window because of the winter blues. When you stick to a workout routine, you’ll enjoy the benefits of happy hormones such as endorphins, dopamine and serotonin that put you in an excellent mood and supercharge your wellness.

This is a virtuous circle that makes you less vulnerable to illnesses going around. During exercise, your body secretes adrenaline, which increases white blood cell production. These cells are what help you fight infection. Your workout increases your white blood cell count for about two days; that’s why doing your FizzUp workout every other day will actively protect you against viruses and bacteria.

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What’s the story behind a better immune system thanks to exercise? The reason dates back to the old stone age, when people had to be physically active so that they could hunt. Humans had to fight off animals and live in hostile natural environments in order to survive and thrive. As you can imagine, injuries were common, so their immune systems had to adapt to protect them against germs.

Dr. Nieman’s study from 2010 shows how moderate physical activity helps you fight winter bugs. For 12 weeks, a group of 1,002 adults were studied. Those who exercised became ill with a cold less often than those who lived a sedentary lifestyle or were high-level athletes. Exercising four to five times a week reduced the number of days these subjects were ill by 43%.

For instance, high-level athletes who run marathons are more prone to getting ill in the winter. Athletes who put lots of physical demands on their body have higher levels of cortisol, the stress hormone. This hormone suppresses your immune defenses. Their airways are also put at risk because of cold and shortness of breath that dries out the mucous membrane in the mouth and nose.

With all this in mind, you can see how your FizzUp workout makes it so much easier for you to fight winter bugs.

2 | BOOST YOUR IMMUNITY BY GETTING ENOUGH SLEEP

We spend a third of our lives asleep, so why not make it as restful as possible for a better experience when you’re awake? Getting quality sleep when winter bugs are out and about guarantees that you get the physical and mental recovery you need. When you find the right balance, this will help you ward off germs, too.

When you don’t get enough sleep, this alters your immune cells like leucocytes (otherwise known as white blood cells) and natural killer (NK) lymphocytes. When you get physical with FizzUp on a regular basis, you’ll have a positive impact on the quality of your sleep. Exercise works as a natural sleep aid because it tires out your body. It also has the power to put you into a deep, restful sleep. Staying active is a surefire way to get some great shut-eye and stay healthy.

3 | BOOST YOUR IMMUNITY BY EATING A HEALTHY DIET

Winter is a time when a lot of us are tempted to eat heartier foods that are higher in fat and calories, but try to resist them for the sake of your health. When you give in, you can overload your digestive system, which can lead to bloating and fatigue. Instead, eat foods such as pumpkin seeds (which are high in minerals), citrus fruits (which are high in vitamins) and vegetables such as carrots, fennel and cabbage. And remember, spices also work to keep your health in check.

A balanced diet can boost your immunity by compensating for a lack of sunlight and getting you all the nutrients your body needs to function. FizzUp Nutrition* can keep you in outstanding health this winter with a wide variety of recipes and nutrition tips.

4 | BOOST YOUR IMMUNITY BY AVOIDING SKIN CONTACT

Shaking hands and being in crowded places is often hard to avoid in our everyday lives, but did you know that physical contact is the main way winter bugs are spread? It’s easy for germs to travel from one person to another, so try saying hello from afar (although that might look less friendly) or taking your bike to work instead of the bus so that you don’t end up bedridden with the good old cold.

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The flu is mainly transmitted when you come into contact with the hands, eyes, mouth or nose of someone who has it. The virus spreads through micro-droplets that are expelled into the air when they sneeze and cough, so keep your distance. If you’re ill, remember to sneeze and cough into your elbow. This lowers your chances of spreading the virus with your hands. Get vaccinated before flu season and give yourself a winter check-up, too.

5 | BOOST YOUR IMMUNITY BY USING ESSENTIAL OILS

Essential oils can also promote winter bug protection. Ravintsara essential oil is a real advantage in boosting your immunity and defeating ear, nose, and throat illnesses such as the flu, sore throat, sinus infections and colds. It works extremely well to revitalize your body and mind, too, for optimal health. Add 30 drops to a spray bottle filled with 50 ml of water to disinfect the air in your home by spraying it two or three times in every room.

If you’re ill, apply two drops of ravintsara essential oil to your inner wrists. Add 10 drops to 10 drops of vegetable oil and rub it in just below your chest and above your stomach (on your solar plexus). Tea tree essential oil is another antiseptic that fights fatigue, germs and viruses.

These are the FizzUp trainer’s top five secrets to boost your immunity. Ready to make them your own and say goodbye to winter sniffles and sneezes?

*FizzUp PRO feature

The Author

FizzUp Staff

FizzUp Staff

As passionate bloggers, the FizzUp Staff’s sole purpose is to motivate the community with insightful and fun articles. Team spirit is one of our core values, whether we’re at work or exercising together in the FizzUp Box.