Outside the window, everything is cooler, and the question of how not to get into bed with a cold and cough becomes urgent. Let us reveal the secret: saving you from some habits and a couple of unobvious rules can save you.
We care about your health and well-being, so we decided to introduce 10 simple but extremely effective preventive measures that can significantly strengthen the immune system.
1. Do not take a low-fat diet.
Diets in the winter – obviously a bad idea, especially for low-fat diets. The fact is that for the normal functioning of the immune system in the body, a certain ratio of all types of cells must be observed. In particular, the state of immunity depends on the activity of B-lymphocytes, T-lymphocytes, and macrophages. Here is the secret: fats are also necessary for the formation of the immune system because the walls of these 3 types of cells are composed of lipids. It is not surprising that with a significant or complete exclusion of fats from the menu, the resistance to infectious diseases decreases.
It is worth noting that overeating is also not worth it because an excess of fat also suppresses the immune system, and excess sugar – a direct way to obesity. It is best to take note of this schedule: do not skip breakfast, and in addition to it we leave 3 more full meals per day, including carbohydrates, proteins and a significant amount of fruits or vegetables.
2. Cut your nails short and do not bite them.
This is not only inelegant and spoils the appearance of fingers, but also leads to diseases, both digestive and infectious. In order to avoid any undesirable diseases, experts in principle advise not to touch your face once again only if you do not wear sterile surgical gloves everywhere and everywhere. Studies show that people who have a habit of touching their eyes, nose, or lips are 41% more likely to suffer from infectious diseases of the upper respiratory tract, let alone those who bite their nails “on an ongoing basis.”
Moreover, doctors also do not advise growing long nails during cold season: in this case, it becomes especially difficult to monitor the cleanliness of the skin and often even after washing hands dirt remains under the nails and then goes straight to the mouth during meals. Thus, preferring short nails, you obviously reduce the risk of potential health problems.
3. Brush your teeth often and change your toothbrush every 2 months.
Regular brushing reduces the chance of getting sick because it successfully eliminates sources of inflammation and infections in the mouth. By carrying out this procedure more often, we prevent bacteria from entering the lungs. In one study, Israeli scientists were able to establish a link between 3-time brushing and a significant reduction in the risk of pneumonia in patients. By the way, the same applies to the evening rinse with salt water.
But regular and frequent tooth brushing also has a downside: if experts usually recommend changing a toothbrush every 3-4 months, then it is better to do it even more often once a 1-2 month in the flu season. This is necessary for quite objective reasons: bacteria also accumulate on the bristles, no matter how well and carefully you wash the brush, and they may well provoke the disease.
4. Less stress and more meditations.
According to a study conducted at Carnegie Mellon University, people experiencing chronic nervous tension, have reduced immunity and get sick more often. That is, there is a direct link: when depressed, the body produces so-called stress hormones, which weaken the immune system and greatly increase the likelihood of catching a cold or flu.
Therefore, if you feel that your nerves are at the limit and the state is out of control, take a step back, exhale and take some measures. For example, meditation has worked well. Scientists from the University of Wisconsin-Madison found that people practicing meditation are 76% less prone to illness. Allow yourself to relax on a day off, “restart” the nervous system after the past week and prepare it for the next one.
5. Ventilate Rooms frequently
Generally, the ventilation of rooms, especially those in which you spend a lot of time, is important all year round. This is especially true of offices, where many people are sitting at once, but just in the room, it will also not be superfluous.
As for the autumn-winter period, the windows should be opened at least once a day, no matter how cold the weather is. Of course, for these 10–15 minutes you need to warm yourself and go to another room. It is worth noting that this is not about drafts, but about airing, which works in two directions at once: it erodes viruses and bacteria and helps the cells of your body, especially the immune ones, to work better due to the influx of oxygen.
6. Get enough sleep, but without pills.
Good quality and proper sleep imply a minimum of 7 hours of rest at certain times of the day (between 22:00 and 7:00). Research has shown that people who sleep less than the allotted are victims of colds 3 times more often because the immune system is weakened because of this.
There is one significant “but”: experts recommend establishing a regimen in a natural way, and in no case with the help of sleeping pills. Why? Because any pills consumed indiscriminately are the enemies of healthy immunity. Better make it a rule to do exercises, sign up for yoga, take evening walks or, even easier, start by buying the correct orthopedic pillow and mattress.
7. Engage taste buds
The use of warm drinks has long been considered a panacea for colds: we diligently drink warm water, herbal teas, chicken broth for both prevention and treatment. But experts advise paying special attention to drinks with a pronounced taste, such as tea with lemon or ginger. In addition to the apparent benefits of relieving sore throat due to excessive saliva, these products have other essential properties.
Lemon is rich not only in vitamin C but also in pectin, a natural prebiotic that aids in digestion. It also contains large amounts of citric acid, which cleanses the kidneys. All of this generally has a positive effect on the immune system.
Ginger has a warming and soothing effect. It contains a large number of vitamins and minerals, including chromium, which is excellent against chills and heat. Ginger is also useful in combating cough, sore throat and headaches, as it can eliminate toxins from the body and cleanse the body.
8. Look into the sauna more often.
In a study by Austrian scientists, 50 adult subjects were divided into 2 groups and placed under observation for 6 months. One group was assigned to regularly visit the sauna, while the other led their normal life. As a result of the experiment, the results were summed up: people from the first group showed better resistance to colds and got sick 2 times less.
This is due to the fact that hot air kills bacteria, and paired procedures have a positive effect on immunity. It is worth noting that before visiting the sauna you should consult with your doctor, as it is at least contraindicated for people with heart and circulatory problems.
9. Do not overdo the cleaning frequency.
Regular cleaning is, of course, essential and even necessary. Particular attention should be paid to wet cleaning in general and the surfaces on which you spend especially a lot of time (like the desktop), in particular. Also, doctors advise not to bypass the door handles, switches and other similar elements, to which we, as well as other family members and guests, touch more often. This is necessary in order to destroy microbes that have accumulated from contact and dust in a timely manner and not to allow them to multiply and gather in such quantities that, in theory, can lead to disease.
At the same time, it is worth remembering that excessive use of disinfectants with an aggressive composition leads to the development and emergence of microorganisms resistant to them. Therefore, do not strive for 100% sterility – it is enough to periodically wipe the surface with a sponge with a neutral or mild detergent.
10. Spend time with people you love
Laughter, positive emotions and positive social interaction have a fairly strong effect on the immune system. Therefore, less advice to communicate with people during the cold season is not as straightforward as it seems. These conclusions were made by scientists who found that spending time with loved ones, embraces and intimate conversations make our health stronger.
Studies also show that people who are in a happy love relationship tend to be sick less than loners. So it is quite possible that our growing desire to be around our loved ones more often or to find a couple for evening gatherings in an embrace is justified not only by psychological factors but also by biological ones.