It’s no surprise that one of the effects of the past few years has been a general increase in attention to our health and well-being.
Besides the direct prevention of COVID, mental health has become a higher priority for some, while others have focused on factors like diet or exercise.
Boosting immunity has remained a huge topic! Vaccines aside, there is more interest than ever in preventing illness and promoting our health holistically.
So can immunity be boosted? And with so many factors at play, how can you set realistic goals? We’ve put together some information for you to help answer these questions!
You’ll also find inspiration to use your MOD Cold Press Juicer or MOD Blend Pro to promote your immunity and well-being.
Enjoy! -Team MOD x
What influences immunity?
There are many factors that influence our overall immunity. Genetics and gut health play a large role, as do lifestyle factors such as diet and exercise habits.
Sleep, stress-levels and even the type of job we have can play a role! Our individual immunity will also vary over time with lifestyle, age and following events such as illnesses.
While we can’t control all of the above factors, the good news is that there is plenty we can do to be proactive.
Can immunity be boosted?
Absolutely! While we want to steer clear of false promises, there are many ways in which we can improve our overall health and boost immunity.
*Harvard Health Publishing advises that factors such as managing stress, getting plenty of sleep, exercising regularly and enjoying a healthy, balanced diet can all support a healthy immune system. More on this below!
When we make a choice to make a change in this space, the bonus is that we often enjoy the benefits of feeling better too.
How can we increase our immunity?
The immune system is complex, so there are many areas that influence immunity! Let’s go through them.
Stress and tension this one may come as a surprise, but prolonged or excessive stress can restrict the absorption of nutrients and trigger hormones that suppress our immune system.
If you know your stress levels are higher than they should be, our suggestion is to focus on what you can do in this space! And if you needed an excuse to invest in a mindful activity such as meditation, yoga or even healthy ‘you-time’ pursuits, know that reducing your stress levels is helping your immunity too.
Smoking if you’re a smoker, we know you’ve probably heard it all! But yes, tobacco can have a suppressive effect on the body's immune system too.
Alcohol is also linked with lowering the body’s immune response, so depending on your weekly intake you may choose to minimise, especially if you are run down.
May we recommend a delicious mock-tail with cold press juice instead? Tis Christmas in July with this one! Apple & Beetroot: Christmas Mock-tail
Healthy and well balanced - the old adage! Variety is key, so aim for a range of fresh veggies, fruits, proteins and nuts. Vitamins associated with immunity include (A, B group, C, D, E), and Minerals (Zinc, Selenium, and Iron). Where will you find these?
Vegetables Shocking, we know! But your body will love you for adding more veggies, with green leaves at the top of the list. Think kale, spinach, cabbage, beet greens, and lettuce.
Check out this Healthline article of The 13 Healthiest Leafy Green Vegetables for more varieties and the nitty gritty of what makes these veggies so great. **Celery, broccoli, tomatoes, carrots and capsicum are all beneficial too.
Fruits such as citrus (lemons, lime, orange, grapefruit) are recommended as well as berries, papaya, kiwi and watermelon.
Proteins such as fish, soy, eggs.
Beneficial, natural sweeteners include unrefined cane sugar (jaggery) and honey
This Sleep Foundation article advises that adults (between 26 - 64 years) generally need between 7-9 hours of sleep. This is how we end up with the general recommendation of 8 hours! Everyone is different, and our sleep needs do vary during different life stages.
Sleep is the time our body repairs, builds resilience and manages inflammation, making sleep a crucial role in our immune response. The Sleep Foundation cover the benefits of sound sleep to the immune system in their article How Sleep Affects Immunity.
*Harvard Health describes exercise as a pillar of healthy living and regular movement will support your overall health and immunity.
Remember that any movement is helpful! If you’re not where you’d like to be, start from where you are and think about ways you enjoy to move. Gym isn't the only option either - you can walk, dance, swim or yoga your way to well-being.
Thanks MOD, but that’s a lot - how do I know what to focus on right now?
At MOD, we believe that a holistic approach is the best way to set yourself up for success. However, we are also very mindful of keeping things realistic - after all, achievable goals are the ones that get done!
There can be a lot of pressure to get everything right in life - managing work, others that depend on you and whatever life throws up is a very real challenge for most of us.
Right now, if you only have the capacity to focus on one or two health factors, it is absolutely worth doing whatever you are able to at this time.
You may even find that the initial changes you make help you feel better able to take on other areas in due course! A happy health-cycle, if you will.
Small changes, big wins
Maybe instead of an ‘all or nothing’ approach, you increase the number of home made, healthy balanced meals you eat each week.
You could introduce more incidental exercises such as stairs instead of the elevator, a few walks or yoga sessions per week as a starting point for fitness.
For sleep, it may simply be a case of deciding to go to bed earlier, or it may be more complex if you have young ones, shift work or sleep disturbances. This article by the Sleep Foundation on Sleep Hygiene has some great tips!
It’s your journey
Wherever you’re at, the key is to take it bit by bit and day by day. Immunity, good health, and well-being are a lifelong journey, not a race.
We encourage you to applaud yourself for the areas you are doing well in and be compassionate about areas that will benefit from improvement, when you are ready.
Be good to you and enjoy the journey!
Did you know? We have recipes for juice, sorbet and blender!
Try these recipes for your MOD Cold Press Juicer or MOD Blend Pro to support your healthy, balanced diet and health journey.
Tess Begg Shares Her Favourite Juice Recipes !
For more MOD recipes click here
*Article - “How to boost your immune system” by Harvard Health Publishing https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/how-to-boost-your-immune-system