An unexpected bout with the flu can dampen your quality of life for a short time. More recently, we’ve had to face the serious threat of the novel coronavirus. Even though we have vaccines for the flu and, now, also for the COVID-19 virus, there are many reasons to revisit how to support the strongest immune system possible. Here, we offer a few easy tips.
Start with the Nasal Passages
The nasal passages are one of the body’s first lines of defense against colds and flu. For the lining of the passages to function optimally, moisture is essential. Some people maintain moist nasal passages by using a Neti Pot daily. The Neti Pot is a nasal irrigation tool that rinses the nasal passages using a saline solution. In addition to or as an alternative to nasal irrigation, one might add a humidifier to the bedroom. The humidifier adds moisture to the air which helps to maintain moisture not only in the nasal passages but also in the skin. Some humidifiers can also work with essential oils. Adding a few drops of peppermint or eucalyptus oil to the water in a humidifier delivers a nice aroma to the air and also helps to prevent mold or bacteria growth in the water reservoir of the device.
Use Your Dietary Habits to Boost Immunity
As a functional nutritionist, Dr. Rabito helps people harness the power of food. The healthiest diets contain whole fruits and vegetables cooked properly to release the maximum nutrients and improve absorption. A diet customized for immune-boosting may include an abundance of leafy greens, a small amount of whole grains, and a moderate amount of seeds and beans. It also includes foods that are packed with antioxidants, vitamins, and lean protein. With that in mind, however, a functional nutritionist may advise eating animal protein only two to three times a week. Hydration is also a vital aspect of supporting a strong immune system. The process of hydrating all parts of the body can be jump-started by drinking warm water upon waking in the morning. From there, water should be sipped throughout the day.
Dietary habits also involve reducing or avoiding foods that can stress the body and diminish immunity. Common culprits that are often mentioned include caffeinated beverages, soda, fruit juice, and alcohol, artificial sweeteners, and processed foods. Red meat and fried foods should be avoided as much as possible, and the consumption of wheat-based products like pasta and bread should be limited.
We continue to gain awareness about the need for a strong immune system in the midst of a lingering pandemic. If you are interested in learning how to use functional nutrition to promote optimal immunity and health, schedule a visit with Dr. Rabito in our comfortable NYC office. Call (877) 703-3775.