There’s a lot of information circulating right now about COVID-19, some is true, others is not, some we just don’t know yet. One thing for sure is a lot of people will be exposed to this novel virus over the next several months to years. Washing hands, social distancing, and avoiding obviously sick people will certainly help reduce the community spread! However, there is still more that YOU can do to determine how YOUR body will respond if exposed.
Boost Your Immune System!
Your nervous system controls and coordinates everything in your body – including your immune response! Staying well adjusted ensures that your immune system is functioning at its best. And you want it to function at its best in the event that you come into contact with the COVID-19 virus (or any potential pathogen!).
Your immune response is beautifully designed to handle this virus; continue to do the things you know to do to keep yourself healthy and you’ll have the best chance of limited to no infection!
What should you be doing to stay healthy during this stressful time? The same thing you do every day to promote health! Stay hydrated, eat well, exercise, go outside and enjoy the fresh air, unplug from social media and the news (even for a short time), sleep well, take your vitamins…and keep up with your chiropractic adjustments!
WHAT YOU CAN DO?
EAT A WELL-BALANCED DIET
The potential to have to be quarantined for 2-3 weeks is rightfully scary. Certainly make sure you are stocked up on canned and frozen foods that will last, just in case! However, this does not mean stock up on junk food. While supplies and your health permits, continue to buy fresh and local as much as possible! Fresh vegetables and fruit (in moderation) will boost your diet with antioxidants! Fresh meat, eggs, fish, oils, nuts and seeds will pack your diet with healthy fats. Long-grain rice and quinoa are great grains to have on hand as well! Stock up on frozen meat and veggies and canned beans. Eating a nutritious diet is one of the best things you can do to optimize your health and not add extra stress to your body!
Excessive alcohol and sugar should be avoided! These things directly impact the functioning of the immune system.
GET PLENTY OF REST/DON’T RUN YOURSELF DOWN
Sleep is crucial to the proper functioning of all systems of the body, including our immune system! If anything, try to get a more sleep than usual during this time. Stress drains our energy and makes us tired. Listen to your body and if you feel the need to go to bed early, sleep in, or take a nap, do it!
Drink water! All day, every day! Hydration is key to the proper functioning of the lymphatic system (which is part of the immune system). Being hydrated keeps the good things circulating and gets the bad things flushed out!
MANAGE YOUR STRESS
Stress directly impacts the immune system. Studies have shown psychological stress impacts if and how severely people are affected by the common cold. It will be no different for this virus! Not to mention, getting yourself hysterical over the current situation will make you more susceptible to ANY type of infection! Find a good source of stress-reduction that will work for you, whether it be meditation, journaling, walking, listening to music, prayer, yoga, etc. Find what brings you peace and stick with it!
Fresh air and sunlight greatly boost the immune system! During the 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic, patients treated outside had higher recovery rates than those treated indoors. Fresh air is calming, but also boosts your energy! A daily walk should be part of everyone’s routine during this time. Just avoid crowded areas and instead head for the woods or back roads! Even a short 10-15 minute break outside can do wonders for your physical and mental well-being!
Keeping your nervous system strong is one of the best ways to keep your immune system in tip top shape! Your nervous system controls every other system in your body, this includes your immune system!
TAKE SUPPLEMENTS TO BOOST IMMUNITY
Any extra boost will help right now! Vitamin D is so essential to immune function and most people are low, if not deficient. Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) will also be crucial for overall health and immunity. If you’re concerned about the quality of your diet, adding a good quality multivitamin can help. Superfood blends can give you an extra boost of antioxidants as well! Finally, a good probiotic is essential to optimize gut health, which is crucial for overall health!
The only way to catch anything is by being a hospitable host. Do everything you can to make COVID-19 feel unwelcome in your body and it won’t stay long – and likely won’t even come in!
If you have any questions or concerns during this time, please reach out! We are always here and dedicated to helping our patients and community Get Healthy and Stay Healthy!