Enhance your Immunity with Proper Diet and Physical Activities

on May 07, 2020

During this hour of Coronavirus pandemic, it is important to strengthen the body’s natural defense system. Strong immune system is the key to stay healthy and it is important that we maintain our immunity throughout our life. Our immune system works consistently to protect ourselves from various microorganisms that cause disease. So, it’s important to include food for immunity boost that gives you the confidence to go ahead.

Enhance your Immunity with Proper Diet and Physical Activities

The concept of boosting the immunity is quite enticing, though the capability of doing so is elusive for multiple reasons. It is important to understand that it is not a singular entity; it is a system, requiring harmony and balance to properly function. The whole world today is fighting against a deadly virus and ministry of AYUSH has released some tips that help you to boost your immunity. Also, you get an idea of the foods, which you must include in your diet.

Immunity-boosting Tips and Foods Recommended by Ministry of AYUSH

Ministry of AYUSH has shared tips on how people can boost the natural defense of the body. As coronavirus (COVID-19) has no vaccine yet, the Ministry has shared self-care guidelines that help you boost immunity as well as are the preventive health measures. These guidelines from the Ministry of AYUSH are recommended by eminent Vaidyas. These recommendations are in reference to respiratory health

General Measure to be followed include:

  • Drinking warm water throughout the day.
  • 30 minutes of daily practice of Pranayama, Yogasana and meditation to keep your immune system healthy. The trending hastags for the same are #StaySafe, #YOGAatHome, and #StayHome
  • The Ministry suggests to include spices like Jeera (Cumin), Haldi (Turmeric), Lahsun (Garlic) and Dhaniya (Coriander) in your daily cooking.

Ayurvedic Immunity Promoting Measures

  • The Ministry suggests people to take 10 gm (1tsf) of Chyavanprash in the morning. It also mentions that Diabetics should opt for sugar free version.
  • It encourages people to drink one or 2 cups of herbal tea / decoction (Kadha) everyday, which will consists of Kalimirch (Black pepper), Tulsi (Basil),  Munakka (Raisin), Dalchini (Cinnamon), and Shunthi (Dry Ginger). The Ministry also suggests you to choose natural sugar like jaggery instead of refined sugar, also lemon can be added to enhance the taste.
  • Golden Milk is what is being used in India since ages but the name might sound new. Ministry of AYUSH recommends drinking, 150 ml hot milk with half tea spoon Haldi (turmeric) powder added to it. Golden milk is to be take once or twice a day.

The Ministry of AYUSH has also released some Simple Ayurvedic Procedures  that you must follow as per your convenience.

  1. The Ministry has suggested to apply coconut oil/ sesame oil or Ghee in the nostrils (Pratimarsh Nasya) in the morning and evening.
  2. In the oil pulling therapy suggested by Ministry of AYUSH, you have to take 1 table spoon coconut or sesame oil in your mouth and swish it in the mouth for 2-3 minutes. You do not have to drink it, after 2-3 minutes spit it off and rinse the mouth with warm water. You can do this once or twice a day, as suggested by the Ministry.

Ministry of AYUSH recommends to do these during dry cough or sore throat

  • Steam inhalation with Ajwain (Caraway seeds) or fresh Pudina (Mint) leaves once a day if you are suffering with dry cough or sore throat.
  • Lavang (Clove) powder mixed with honey or any other natural sugar can be taken 2 to 3 times in a day to relax cough or throat irritation.

The Ministry says that the measures are to treat normal dry cough and sore throat. They encourage people to consult doctors in case the symptoms persist.

So, now you know what Ministry of AYUSH recommends, follow them to stay safe and bolster your immunity. 

Now, I would like to tell a few more things that might help you, but what Ministry of AYUSH recommends should remain the priority. 

Healthy activities to keep healthy mind and body

If you can protect your each body part along with the immune system from environmental cuffs, bolstering by strategies of healthy living, they can certainly function in a much better way. A brief healthy guide would look like: 

  • Vegetable and fruit rich diet
  • Quit on smoking
  • Regular exercise
  • Keep healthy weight
  • Drink alcohol moderately
  • Get Sufficient sleep
  • Keep Stress at bay

Below, we will be discussing about some effective Immune-boosting tips:

Relax yourself

Some stress may help your body in getting prepared for certain challenges, but if they last for a long period of time, that’s not good news. Consistent stress can impair the defense mechanism of your body, so avoiding stress is very important. Whenever you find yourself in much tension, try to do things you get pleasure in.

Have a furry friend

Have you ever wondered why they are known as ‘man’s best friend’? Because, they are not just an enjoyable company, dog, cats and other pets keep you stress free. 

Develop social network

Our friends play a great role in our life, but strong ties with the society can also affect our overall health. Try to keep yourself active socially, as healthy relations can help you to live longer with a sound body. There are various ways to broaden your social circle, volunteering or joining a group that you like can help nurturing the bonds.

Stay positive

If you think positive, the defense system of your body works better. How can we stay constantly happy? Simply by engaging ourselves in the activities we enjoy. Dwelling with bad thoughts is certainly not a good idea to follow, instead try thinking of good times, especially while passing through tough times.

Laughter is certainly the best medicine

When you laugh, you not only feel happy, but you also stay stress free. To keep give yourself the much needed laughter therapy, watch comedy movies, series or practice laughter yoga.  

Consider regular exercise

Exercise is definitely one of the best ways for revving up your immune system. It helps easing stress and if you do exercise regularly, it keeps your heart and brain healthy, as well as keeps several disease at bay. 

Get adequate sleep

Without sufficient sleep, your immune system can’t properly fight against diseases. Adults require more or less about 6 to 8 hours of sleep. Maintaining a regular schedule of bedtime is a good idea which will help you in staying energetic throughout the day. Avoid boozing and caffeine intake before bedtime.

Drink alcohol moderately

Alcohol shops are now open in India and the excitement of people has been reported by media recently, but excessive consumption weakens your defense system, causing you to get ill more often. So, watch your alcohol consumption. If you do not want to stop drinking alcohol, at least try to consume in moderation, try not to have more than two drinks in a day. 

Kick your smoking habit

If you want to favor your immune system, you should quit smoking.It may take couple of attempts before you finally give up. Consult your doctor for suggestion on what path to follow in making this vital change in life. 

Consider your diet

Looking for Immune-boosting foods? It is important that you follow a plant-based and low-fat diet. Vegetarians tend to produce more active white blood cells to combat against pathogens because of their low consumption of fat and high consumption of vitamins.

Vitamins, minerals and antioxidants

Vegetables and fruits are considered as the best Food for immunity, as they are rich source of important nutrients such as vitamin C, beta-carotene and vitamin E which can boost the function ability of our immune system.Certain plant based foods also provide antioxidants, help reducing oxidative stress.

Beta-carotene

It is a strong antioxidant that can lessen inflammation and increase cells that fight against diseases, boosting the immune function. Some good sources of beta-carotene are carrots, sweet potatoes and green leafy vegetables.

Vitamin E and C

These vitamins are capable of destroying free radicals, supporting the natural immune reaction of the body. Excellent sources of vitamin C are oranges, red peppers, strawberries, mangoes, broccoli, lemons and other vegetables and fruits. Sources of Vitamin E include seeds, nuts, broccoli and spinach.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D reduces pro-inflammatory compounds production in your body, decrease your tendency to get viral infections that may include infections in respiratory tract. Increased amount of vitamin D in blood can prevent some chronic diseases like tuberculosis, cardiovascular disease and hepatitis. Some important sources of vitamin D are plant-based milks, fortified cereals and supplements.

Zinc

Zinc is an important mineral for human body that helps boosting white blood cells, supporting to build a powerful shield against invaders. You can have pumpkin seeds, nuts, beans, sesame seeds and lentils as Food for good immune system.

Conclusion

The most important thing is to have positive thoughts, maintain a healthy lifestyle and avoid things that can destroy or distort the normal balance of life. The next step is to stay updated on the current coronavirus pandemic, follow the hygiene measures announced by WHO and stay at home. The importance of food for immunity boost and other lifestyle tips are discussed above. Stay away from stress. 

Sta Healthy, Stay Safe, Stay Home. 

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