As BodyMe customers, you’re on the ball. You’ve put in the hard work, you’ve done your research and clearly, you’re invested in your health. Exercise, sleep, healthy eating, blah, blah. We get it. Heard it all before. So, how about some tips you may not have considered that can help fight off flu season.
1. Gut’s up, Doc?
Pre- and probiotics, that’s what’s up. Boosting the quantity and quality of microorganisms in your gut helps digestion and stimulates your immune system. For prebiotics, try Jerusalem artichokes, garlic, bananas and cacao (yay, chocolate! Well, in its rawest most flavonoid dense state). Just not all together, eh? Examples of probiotics are things like yoghurt (obvs), tempeh, kimchi and sauerkraut – essentially, fermented foods.
Embrace your inner Wim Hof with a cold shower. Your first reaction is probably similar to mine – urgh! Going “full cold” is too much for me so personally, I have a warm shower to start and then finish with an icy blast at the end. Used for hundreds of years, exposure to cold water can not only boost your immune system and metabolism but also release endorphins – the happy hormones. Cold equals happy! Be brave and give it a go.
3. Check your head.
No longer the sole reserve of monks and the select few, daily meditation now helps thousands of people deal with the stresses and strains of the modern world. By focusing on the present moment, the body naturally calms itself and allows your immune system to do its job and take care of you. Quite literally, healthy mind, healthy body. Try apps like Headspace, Calm and Ten Percent Happier Meditation to set you on the road to inner peace.
4. Take a HIIT.
Exercising to protect your body is a given. But in a time-poor world, HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) could be the perfect solution for those who struggle to find the time to work out. Even as little as 10 minutes a day, three times a week, can improve blood flow, build muscle and lower blood pressure. Smash it out and bask in that smug feeling of satisfaction for the rest of the day!
5. Rock out!
A little leftfield this one – singing. Yes, you read that right. A little karaoke with the hairbrush now and again can keep colds at bay. How, you ask? In a 2004 study, two groups were compared. One group listened to music and the other group sang along. Those who sang showed higher levels of immunoglobulin A, an antibody your body secretes to help you fend off infections. Listening to music (without singing along) reduced stress hormones but didn’t stimulate the body’s immune system.
So, there you go. A few hacks you may not have considered before but all of which have the ability to fight off infections: Pre- and probiotics, cold showers, meditation, HIIT and singing.
Never thought I’d be writing a sentence like that!
Author - Tom Charlesworth