You can definitely not spend an hour these days, without hearing the word ‘coronavirus’. The outbreak, which has now been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, has infected more than 1,00,000 people globally. It is hence, advisable to strictly practice precautions. The most important factor in the wake of coronavirus, that can save you possibly, is immunity. Though there isn’t any proof as to why and how does immunity help in keeping away coronavirus, there have been speculations that since this virus initiates with flu-like symptoms a strong immune system can help. Here’s how you can strengthen your immune system
Be Physically Fit
The modern job and study routine has eliminated physical activity to a great extent from our lives. The National Health Services, UK, says adults should be physically active in some way every day and do at least 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic activity (hiking, gardening, cycling) or 75 minutes of vigorous activity (running, swimming fast, an aerobics class). As exercise allows a better blood circulation, it is one of the best ways to strengthen the immune system. For older people, any sort of advice that suits them is advisable. However, if exercise is done beyond a point, it turns negative. So its good to stick to the advisable limits.
According to a study by the University of Birmingham and King’s College, London found that 125 non-smoking amateur cyclists aged 55 to 79 still had the immune systems of young people. Even scientists have warned that smokers might face an increased risk of Coronavirus, with even worse symptoms. So if you’re thinking of giving up smoking, this is the best time! A public health expert at Nottingham Trent University, told The Sun Online: “There is certainly a respectable body of medical opinion that thinks serious outcomes are more likely among heavy smokers. Basically any previous lung damage increases that risk. If you are an ex-miner with pneumoconiosis and a smoker you should definitely be concerned.”
If you look closely, all the factors for strengthening the immune system are interlinked. According to experts, Stress hormones such as cortisol can compromise immune function, and this can make you more vulnerable to infections. Chronic stress can affect your white blood cells, hence, making you even more susceptible to contracting an illness. Meditation helps, along with other exercises. It is also advisable to get good sleep.
Heavy Drinking Depletes Immune Cells
Another health expert told The Guardian, “Some studies have suggested that the first-line-of-defense macrophages are not as effective in people who have had a lot of alcohol. And there’s been suggestions that high alcohol consumption can lead to a reduction of the lymphocytes as well. So if the bug gets into you, you’re not going to be as good at containing and fighting it off.” So its time to eliminate everything that isn’t healthy.
Vitamin A And Vitamin D
According to The Sun, vitamin D helps stimulate the production of peptide – substances in the body that are able to fight off bacteria, fungi and viruses. NHS recommends taking a Vitamin D supplement. Also, since the virus initiates with cold and cough, it is advisable to take more of Vitamin A as it helps keep the mucosal linings in our nose and lungs robust enough to defend against infection. For Vitamin A, fruits and vegetables such as oranges, mango, apricots, and melon should be taken.
Picture Credit- Facundo Arrizaba BALAGA/ The Conversation