9 Quick Ways to Boost Your Immune System
If you’re looking for information on how to quickly boost immune system response, you’ll find 9 science-based answers in this in-depth article.
If you are wondering how to quickly boost your immune system, this article covers the most important steps you can take to achieve that result.
Unfortunately, there is no magic bullet for instantly improving immune response with a single dose of a vitamin, mineral, or herb. However, by consistently practicing certain healthy habits as described here, you will likely see positive results in your ability to fight infections and get healthy as soon as possible.
In this article, you’ll learn about well-known ways of improving immune health, like eating healthy fruits and vegetables, taking zinc and vitamin C supplements, and engaging in physical activity.
In addition, you’ll learn several immune healthy lifestyle practices and facts that most other articles on this subject don’t cover. For example, we’ll discuss the importance of the lymphatic system for staying healthy and how lymph relies on physical movement to remove waste products from the body.
Read on, and discover nine science-based lifestyle practices for quickly improving and strengthening your immune system and overall health.
1. Eat Foods High in Vitamin C, D, E, B6, and Zinc
Eating healthy foods is always a good idea, but if you want to boost your immune response as fast as possible, it’s essential to eat foods high in vitamins C, D, E, and B6, along with the mineral zinc. 
In addition to these immune system-essential nutrients, beta carotene, healthy fats, and high-quality protein are also critical for high-functioning immunity. 
Here are some of the best fruits, vegetables, and protein sources for achieving a healthy diet and the nutrition you need to keep your immune response in optimum condition:
- Vitamin C rich fruits and vegetables, including citrus fruits, broccoli, and red bell peppers
- Vitamin E from nuts and seeds such as sunflower seeds, walnuts, almonds and cold-pressed olive oil
- Beta carotene from dark leafy greens, apricots, sweet potato, carrots, and broccoli
- Vitamin B6 in foods including tuna, beef, chicken, avocado, salmon, bananas, spinach, and sunflower seeds
- High vitamin D foods like oily fish, mushrooms, and foods fortified with this nutrient.
Good quality protein is also essential for a healthy immune system.  Excellent sources of protein that also provide high amounts of other critical immune-boosting nutrients, such as zinc and vitamin B6, include:
- Wild-caught salmon
- Lean beef
- Pumpkin seeds
In addition, fermented foods contain healthy gut bacteria that assist the body in absorbing nutrients from the foods you eat. These probiotic foods include:
- Live culture yogurt and kefir
- Naturally fermented sauerkraut and pickles
- Natto, tempeh, and miso
By focusing your daily diet on these superfoods, you can give your body a boost of the essential nutrition needed to strengthen your immune response.
2. Get Enough Sleep for Improved Immune Health
Multiple research studies conclude that getting enough deep and restful sleep is essential for optimizing the natural defenses of the body and boosting immunity to optimum levels. 
If you’re tossing and turning all night and waking up unrested, these tips can help improve the quality and quantity of your sleeping hours.
- Avoid caffeine after midday.
- Get off your phone or computer an hour before bed.
- Keep the bedroom dark when sleeping.
- Take a warm shower or bath before bed.
- Drink a cup of relaxing herbal tea in the evening.
- Listen to soothing music shortly before bedtime.
- Listen to theta or delta wave binaural beats before going to sleep.
During sleep, the immune system is especially active, and the dreamless period of deep sleep is most crucial for the activation of this bodily function. So by doing whatever you can to get enough sleep, you can quickly boost your immune system health.
3. Cut Out Toxic Stress to Improve Immune Function
Multiple studies show that chronic stress levels adversely impact immune function. However, eliminating all stress is impossible, and low amounts of stress, like the type experienced during an occasional ‘fight or flight’ situation, can strengthen immune response. 
However, many research studies show that chronic stress harms overall health and decreases strong immune system function. So if you are trying to boost your immune response as fast as possible, cutting out toxic stressors can help.
Here are some ideas for reducing your stress levels:
- Avoid people and situations that stress you out.
- Take walks in nature.
- Practice mindfulness or meditation.
- Listen to binaural beats designed for stress reduction.
- Have fun and laugh.
- Spend relaxing time with friends, family, and pets.
In addition, moderate exercise during the day can help with reducing stress and also improve sleep quality and duration.
4. Rapidly Boost Immunity with Supplements
Getting all the essential nutrients from a healthy diet alone is challenging and sometimes impossible, especially if you want to give your immune system a quick boost.
For the fastest results, consider taking these supplements to boost immune system function in addition to eating a balanced diet.
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin D
Strong scientific evidence supports supplementing with vitamin C and the mineral zinc to fight and prevent infection and provide the body with crucial antioxidant levels needed to fight off the common cold and other acute illnesses. 
To boost vitamin D intake, you can use a supplement, eat foods rich in this vitamin, or get a daily dose of sunshine. Going outside and exercising at midday is an excellent way of combining vitamin D-generating sunlight exposure and healthy physical activity to stimulate the immune system.
5. Exercise Stimulates the Immune Response
Research studies have shown a positive connection between exercise and increasing T cells and other immune cells. 
Getting a moderate amount of physical activity at least five days per week contributes to better overall health and an ability to resist infection. Exercise also plays a crucial role in cleansing the body of waste products and toxins.
The lymphatic system is the waste disposal system of the body. However, the lymphatic system does not have a pump like the heart to circulate this fluid around the body.
Instead, the lymphatic system relies on the movement of muscles through physical activity to circulate lymph and remove waste products from the bloodstream and tissues. Movement is essential for keeping lymph flowing and eliminating toxins from the body, and this is one reason exercise is so vital for optimum health and immune functioning (Cleveland Clinic). 
Getting the benefits of exercise does not necessarily mean you need to jog five miles each day or race in a bicycle marathon. Research shows that even modest, regular exercise contributes significantly to improved health of the immune system by increasing oxygen in the blood, reducing stress, and activating the lymphatic system. 
For an alternative to working out at the gym, consider:
- Putting on some music and dancing
- Doing yoga on the living room floor or outdoors
- Catching up on strenuous housecleaning
- Working in the garden
- Walking briskly for 20 minutes
6. Stay Well-Hydrated for Better Immune System Health
Evidence on the connection between staying hydrated and immune health is still unclear. However, we know that staying hydrated assists the body in flushing out waste materials and toxins, and hydration is also crucial for healthy blood circulation and the functioning of organs, such as the liver and kidneys. 
However, drinking plain water is not the only way to hydrate your body. Herbal teas and green tea are other beverages that provide essential liquid and include delicious flavor and a dose of antioxidants.
In addition, consuming bone broth or chicken soup can increase your uptake of hydrating and nourishing liquids while also providing vitamins, minerals, protein, and loads of delicious flavor.
By adding a dash of turmeric to chicken soup or broth, you can give your immune system an additional boost with this powerful, anti-inflammatory and immune system-enhancing herbal additive. 
7. Dump Unhealthy Habits for a Strong Immune System
Smoking, and other forms of tobacco use, drinking alcohol, and using recreational drugs take a heavy toll on immune system function. 
By eliminating these unhealthy habits or engaging in them at a moderate level, you can boost immunity and increase your body’s abilities for fighting infections.
8. Fasting Can Improve Resistance to Disease
Forbes magazine shows several studies that a fast can reduce oxidative stress, improve the activity of healthy gut microorganisms, and lower blood glucose levels and blood pressure. 
A fast does not need to involve days of not eating anything, and lengthy fasts might be unhealthy and counterproductive, especially for people with an illness, pregnant women, and the elderly.
Intermittent fasts are easier on the body and easier to accomplish. An intermittent fast involves reducing the window of time where you consume food to about six hours each day: for example, only eating between noon and 6 PM.
However, it’s always wise to consult with your doctor before undertaking a fast, especially if you have an illness or are pregnant.
9. Take Soothing Saunas to Boost Your Immune System
The warm air in a sauna has several health benefits, including stimulating the immune system. In one study conducted in Finland, two treatment groups were evaluated before and after taking saunas followed by brief, cold water baths to cool down rapidly. 
One treatment group had nine athletes, and the other group had nine non-athletes. The researchers found that immune cells such as T cells, white blood cells, and lymphocytes, increased in both groups after the sessions.
Additionally, the scientists found that the increase in immune system function was higher in the group of athletes. The researchers also noted that a fast cool down after the sauna was critical for preventing prolonged sweating and keeping the immune cell count at a high level.
This research supports the claim that taking saunas followed by a quick, cold shower or dip in a cool bath is another way to quickly boost your immune system.
However, saunas are not beneficial for everyone, and it’s a good idea to consult your health care provider first, especially if you have a severe illness or are pregnant or elderly.
10. Bonus tip: How to Improve Immune System Health with Blood Testing
The Alcat Test is a validated method for investigating a person’s immune reaction to foods, food additives, drug ingredients, herbal supplements, molds, and biogenic amines. This test can be helpful for people who want to fight inflammation using reliable information about what foods, supplements, and other substances might be adversely affecting their health.
Boosting your immune system cannot be done overnight. However, you can often speed up a healthy immune response for fighting infections and staying healthy by:
- Consuming foods or supplements containing vitamins C, D, E, B6, and zinc
- Regularly engaging in moderate exercise
- Getting sufficient restful deep sleep
- Staying hydrated
- Avoiding smoking, recreational drugs, and excessive alcohol consumption
- Reducing stress
- Taking saunas and practicing intermittent fasts.
By engaging in as many of these healthy lifestyle practices as possible, you have the greatest chance of quickly boosting your immunity to infections and disease, and, especially by eating healthy foods that are right for your body.
Based on healthy lifestyle habits supplements can fill in the gap if you have health conditions or deficiencies that increase your need for certain nutrients. Alcat blood testing can help determine if certain foods and other substances interfere with your optimum health.
German version of this article: Wie lässt sich das Immunsystem schnell stärken?
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