11 Steps to Boost Your Immune

Your immune system is influenced by your overall health and these tips can help keep you going strong through the cold and flu season.

1 - Superb Sleep
An old Irish proverb states: A good laugh and a long sleep are the best cures in the doctor's book. To get a good night’s sleep develop a routine; go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. Make sure your bedroom is quiet and dark and cool.  Use a fan or sound generator to mask noise. Use the bedroom only for sleeping or sex.

Avoid or limit your use of caffeine (coffee, tea, caffeinated soda, chocolate), decongestants, alcohol and tobacco. Exercise regularly but not before bed. Try eating a small complex carbohydrate snack before bed. Talk to your physician about Melatonin a natural hormone that can help balance and maintain your sleep cycle.

2 - Supplement Strategy
Magnesium supports a healthy immune system and, in doses of approximately 250 milligrams, can help induce sleep. A deficiency of magnesium can be responsible for nervousness that prevents sleep.

Without sustained calcium, the immune system isn't activated. By combining your magnesium supplement with calcium you make it easier for your body to absorb and get the most out of it.

Adding vitamin D, (the sunshine vitamin) and a potent immune system modulator, will help the body absorb the calcium.

Vitamin C tops the list of immune boosters and gives all round support to your immune system as it increases the production of infection-fighting white blood cells and antibodies and the levels of interferon, the antibody that coats cell surfaces, preventing the entry of viruses.

Vitamin E stimulates the production of natural killer cells, whose job responsibility is to seek out and destroy germs.  Vitamin E enhances the production of B-cells, the immune cells that produce antibodies that destroy bacteria.

3 - Savory Meals
Eat five to nine servings of fruits and vegetables per day. To help maximize the variety of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, eat at least two different colors of vegetables and fruits with each meal.  Many nutritionists suggest dividing your plate into segments: two-thirds vegetables, fruit, whole grains, and beans, and one-third with lean protein.

Sweet potatoes, squash and carrots are excellent sources of beta-carotene, which fights infection because it helps protect the mucous membranes of the nose, mouth, throat and sinuses.

Maitake and Shitake mushrooms contain polysaccharides, which are full of immune-boosting properties.

Bell peppers, strawberries, papaya, broccoli and tomatoes are packed with powerful of antioxidants. These foods will kick up gamma interferon, the protein that

Dynamic Living Magazine Issue Vol. 1  Jan/Feb 2011 continue to page 2