When it comes to wellness, prevention is always better than cure, which is why it’s essential to consider bolstering your immune system before you’re struck down by the sniffles or the fatigue that often accompanies weakened immunity...
As a complex network, your immune system works synergistically to fight infection and keep you feeling healthy, well and vital. And while our body inherently knows what to do when a virus invades, our natural defence system can always do with a little extra support. Here’s how to supercharge your immunity with a few simple lifestyle tweaks…
Savour Your Sleep
We’re huge advocates for beauty sleep here at The Beauty Chef, but beyond the skin-nourishing benefits of getting enough shut-eye, sleep is even more important for supporting immune health. With research illustrating how a balanced circadian rhythm—our natural sleep/wake cycle—can actually help to produce anti-inflammatory cytokines, it seems that sleep may be able to boost the body’s ability to fight infection. On the flipside, prolonged periods of broken, low-quality sleep can have the opposite response—contributing to chronic low-grade inflammation and immunodeficiency. If sleep remains elusive for you, try addressing your sleep hygiene—turn off your devices a few hours before bedtime as research has linked blue light exposure to suppressed melatonin levels, avoid caffeine and establish a sleep routine which helps to reduce your stress levels.
We all know how damaging stress can be for our overall wellbeing—but stress and excess cortisol can directly impact our immune health, too. This means that when we’re feeling stressed, our ability to actually fight off infection is severely reduced—leaving us even more vulnerable. To help manage stress, we need to implement lifestyle practices that we can commit to consistently. A few ideas to try; meditation, yoga, Pilates, reading a book or stretching for 10 minutes daily.
Eat for Immunity
With an estimated 70 per cent of our immune system residing in our gut, it’s no surprise that we need to take care of our digestive health if we are to strengthen and support our overall immunity. Paying attention to how we load up our plate is therefore essential, and the two key ingredients to nosh on are fibre and fermented foods. More than any other food group, fibre is what helps to support our gut health and bolster our overall immunity by encouraging the proliferation of healthy bacteria in the gut. But the magic really happens when these beneficial bacteria ferment fibre in the colon—as the byproducts they produce are called short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) and it’s these anti-inflammatory marvels which help to strengthen the gut lining and supercharge our immune defences. Fermented foods are also vital. Rich in probiotic bacteria, fermented foods contain postbiotics, which have immune-modulating properties that can help to boost our overall health.
With countless products available these days that are said to boost your immune system and stave off illness, it can be easy for your kitchen (or bathroom) cupboard to feel a little like a pharmacy. We certainly advocate for boosting your health, beauty and wellbeing from within—but it’s important to be wise about the supplements you take as it can be so easy to double up on ingredients. The Beauty Chef's Immunity Kit has been consciously curated to help boost your immune system naturally, while also supporting your beauty, digestion and wellbeing.*