With the stressors of our day-to-day environment, being proactive and boosting your immunity is more important now than ever. The truth is we can’t control a virus, bacteria or disease, but we can control the host and how our body responds.
Here are eight proven daily rituals that will keep you healthy year round, even during the most vulnerable times like the flu, back to school and travel seasons.
1. Hydrate Before Doing Anything Else
This surely isn’t surprising news but to flush toxins out, we have to be properly hydrated.
Start by hydrating when you first awake. When sleeping, we lose roughly one liter of water, causing many people to wake up feeling dehydrated.
This is detrimental to the brain, skin and your body’s immunity. The liver and other key organs work through the night collecting toxins, storing them until drinking water helps to flush them out.
It’s something easy to do and doesn’t take much time. Leave a water bottle by your bed and aim to kick off your day with at least one liter of water when you wake up. As a bonus, adding lemon and ionized salt adds a boost of electrolytes.
2. Conduct a Two-Minute Dry-Skin Brush
Moving your lymphatic system takes out all the toxins so your cells can get back to defending, repairing and rejuvenating rather than processing toxins.
This not only keeps your skin ridiculously healthy and smooth, but is the quickest way to maintain your health while adding in a little mindfulness by paying attention to each part of your body.
3. Eat Breakfast
They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day and it’s proven to help boost your immunity.
While it’s not always easy to pack in your daily dose of fruits and veggies, a smoothie is a great alternative to sneak in all the nutrients as the first meal. There are many tips to stay healthy at home and on a vacation.
If you start out healthy, you’re more likely to carry that habit throughout the rest of your day.
4. Get Moving
With the changes in our environment and much of our lives becoming virtual, we’re now sedentary a lot of the day. As a result, it’s important to find ways to remain active.
The hardest part is remembering to give your mind a break. Try setting a timer to make it a habit to move at the top of every hour. Even if it’s just a few minutes of stretching or yoga, it will do the body and mind good.
If the weather is nice, go for a digital detox by going for a walk outdoors.
5. Spend Time in Nature
There’s something special about being surrounded by nature that helps ease the mind and body. Sometimes, going for a weekend getaway to surround yourself with some sun can leave lasting effects.
Even 15 minutes of sunlight can help optimize your circadian rhythm, reduce anxiety, and elevate your mood.
6. Prioritize Quality Sleep
While you can drink countless cups of coffee to boost your energy, there’s nothing better than getting sound sleep to boost your immune system.
Studies show that approximately 7.5 to 8 hours of sleep is needed every night to hit the right zone. Some people may need less, some may need more. During the hours of slumber, the body runs on a 90 minutes sleep cycle and at least five of those are needed to perform at your best.
High quality sleep washes out toxins from our brain and body. Aiming for a similar bedtime each night will help you fall into the rhythm of a better sleep habit.
7. Eliminate Added Sugar
As much as sweets can bring joy to our lives, the effects of adding too much sugar weaken the immune system. Added sugar not only sucks the collagen right from your face, it’s the key to making your immune system weaker.
Sugar feeds all bacteria, viruses and cancers. While it gives a small dose of joy in the moment, the long-term effects can be hurtful.
Take healthy eating steps to limit your intake of sugar by monitoring what you eat and saying no to that last cookie!
8. Reduce Your Surrounding Chemicals
While there are ingredients that may be harmful in food, personal care and cleaning products are also something to consider.
There are several thousand chemicals legally allowed in products sold in the US even though they’re extremely toxic to us.
Pay special attention and toss out anything with these ingredients as they are the worst offenders when it comes to suppressing your immunity. This includes “Fragrance”, Formaldehyde, Phthalates, Parabens, SLS and SLES (Sodium Lauryl Sulfates).
Even incorporating one small healthy ritual can provide a massive benefit to improving your immune system. Try one of these suggested rituals that resonates with you, then challenge yourself to build up to all eight.