Fall season is upon us and many of us struggle with seasonal colds and the flu. If you seek some simple ways to boost your immune system, Harvard Medical School offers the following tips:
- Don’t smoke!
- Eat nutritious foods and enjoy junk food in moderation.
- Exercise regularly.
- For most healthy adults, the Department of Health and Human Services recommends these exercise guidelines:
“Aerobic activity. Get at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity a week, or a combination of moderate and vigorous activity. The guidelines suggest that you spread out this exercise during the course of a week. Greater amounts of exercise will provide even greater health benefit. But even small amounts of physical activity are helpful. Being active for short periods of time throughout the day can add up to provide health benefit.
Strength training. Do strength training exercises for all major muscle groups at least two times a week. Aim to do a single set of each exercise, using a weight or resistance level heavy enough to tire your muscles after about 12 to 15 repetitions.
Moderate aerobic exercise includes activities such as brisk walking, swimming and mowing the lawn. Vigorous aerobic exercise includes activities such as running and aerobic dancing. Strength training can include use of weight machines, your own body weight, resistance tubing or resistance paddles in the water, or activities such as rock climbing.
As a general goal, aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity every day. If you want to lose weight, maintain weight loss or meet specific fitness goals, you may need to exercise more. Want to aim even higher? You can achieve more health benefits if you ramp up your exercise to 300 minutes or more a week.”
- Maintain a healthy weight.
- There are many online Body Mass Index (BMI) calculators to help you determine this, or talk to your doctor if you are concerned about weight.
- If you drink alcohol, drink only in moderation.
- The CDC defines “moderation” as up to two drinks per day for men and one for women. Men can drink slightly more due to creating more of an enzyme called alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH).
- Get adequate sleep.
- Adults need 7-9 hours every night.
- Take steps to avoid infection, such as washing your hands frequently and cooking meats thoroughly.
- Try to minimize stress.
- Journaling, meditation, massage, regular exercise, and saying “no” to more tasks than you can handle are all good ways to decrease stress.
Take good care of yourself and your loved ones this fall season. Call us to schedule self-care if you need a massage, chiropractic care, or physical therapy.