Originating in Wuhan, China, coronavirus has traveled to the world, creating an impact on the nations like never before. Its drastic effect on the world population is increasing with the passing of every day. The reason being neither we have been able to prevent the damage caused by COVID-19 completely, nor we could find a cure for the same.
Today, almost every country has been affected by it in terms of health, life, and the economy. Everyone is taking preventive measures to minimize its effect, along with leaving no stone unturned to find a cure to eliminate it. So, let’s get started and throw some light on the same.
The Age Factor
If we focus on its effect on human beings, the ones who are older or are suffering from an underline health condition (including high blood pressure and diabetes) are at a high risk of developing severe symptoms and losing their lives from COVID-19.
On the contrary, if you are healthy or young, your probability of developing these symptoms is less. Also, if under any circumstances, you contract the virus, you will most likely experience mild symptoms, and be able to recover from coronavirus in a few weeks.
Why the Age Factor Matters?
The reason age factor matter is due to the fact that it is directly proportional to the strength of our immune system. If, by any chance, we contract this virus, it is our immune system only which is going to fight for us against coronavirus. There are a lot of uncertainties involved around COVID-19, and not even a single person can fully eliminate the risk of contracting the same.
The only thing we can do is work on making our immune system stronger by consuming essential nutrients. Amongst these, micronutrients such as the minerals zinc, selenium, iron, and vitamins A, B, C, D, and E help in fighting against this disease.
Why do some People have a Weak Immune System?
Just as we discussed above, the immune system of the very young and very old is weak as compared to other people. The reason being the immune system of the very young babies hasn’t really matured, and in the case of old people, their cells start becoming slow in their ability to react to the infections.
Apart from this, individuals who are suffering from a severe disease or are taking an immunity suppressing drug also fall into this category. This includes people who are undergoing chemotherapy, suffering from conditions such as cancer, rheumatoid arthritis or had organ transplants.
Top Ways to Boost Your Immune System
Get Sufficient Sleep
As per Moyad, M.D., M.P.H., Jenkins/ Pokempner, University of Michigan Medical Center’s director for preventive and alternative medicine, “Sleep helps in rebooting the system. It is like a computer system that needs rest moments upon becoming overheated.”
When you do not get enough sleep, your body produces stress hormones such as cortisol to keep you alert and awake, suppressing your immune system eventually. On the other hand, when you get a proper 8 hours of sleep, your body comprises a higher number of disease-fighting T cells.
So, in order to have a strong immune system, you must take 7 to 9 hours of sleep regularly.
Consume Vitamins that Boost Immunity
To make your immune system stronger, you should eat foods that support the same like spinach, citrus fruits, broccoli, garlic, and more. In case your immune system is already weak, consuming essential minerals and vitamins like Vitamin D, Zinc, Vitamin B, and Vitamin C will help you in an overall way. One of the best methods for getting a high amount of Zinc, Vitamin B, and Vitamin C is intravenously (IV).
Natural Vitamin Sources:
- Iron: fish, chicken, and meat. Vegetarian sources comprise iron-fortified breakfast cereals, whole grains, and legumes
- Zinc: chicken, meat, oysters and other seafood, dried nuts and beans
- Vitamin A: cheese, tofu, oily fish, egg yolks, seeds, whole grains nuts, and legumes
- Vitamin C: limes, broccoli, tomatoes, berries, oranges, lemons, kiwifruit, and capsicum
- Vitamin D: primarily sunlight, but is also available in a few foods like as fish, eggs, and fortified margarine and milk brands
- Vitamin E: vegetable oils, green leafy vegetables, and nuts
- Vitamin B6 (riboflavin): nuts, fish, cereals, legumes, chicken, meat green leafy vegetables, and fruit
- Vitamin B9 (folate): commercial flour for bread-making, legumes, green leafy vegetables, nuts, and seeds
- B12: animal products (meat, dairy, eggs, and fortified soya milk)
- Selenium: nuts, mainly Brazil meat and nuts, mushrooms, and cereals
Consume Nutritional Foods: Fruits, Veggies, and Seeds
Get rid of processed foods and instead consume healthy fats, fruits, lean meat, whole grains, and vegetables in order to give your immune system and body their essentials to make them function in the best possible manner. Apart from this, it is recommended to optimize dietary habits too.
Also, alcohol, sugar, vegetable oils, and processed meat fall in the category of inflammatory foods, making your immune system extremely busy to address other body problems.
So, if you want a healthy immune system, you need to remove these inflammatory foods from your diet.
A lot of studies have proved that regular exercise not only benefits your immune system but also helps to keep your lungs and heart healthy.
Even if you are physically distancing, there are multiple ways to execute a daily exercise program. However, you need to exercise slowly in the beginning if you are not accustomed to it, explains Professor Pellegrini, an expert for infectious diseases at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute.
He further explained that if you are exercising a lot at the beginning stage itself, your body will invest a large amount of energy into building your fitness and muscles, leaving less amount of it to boost the immune system.
Work on Eliminating Stress
Chronic stress elevates the risk of various illness types and slows the immune system, along with raising hormone levels of catecholamines. Apart from this, it also suppresses T cells’ level, which, in turn, further suppresses the immune system.
With the suppression of T cells, you are more prone to catching viral infections, including respiratory ones like flu, cold, and the novel coronavirus. Stress releases an allergic molecule named histamine, adding to the overall complexity. Try to eliminate stress through relaxation, deep breathing, exercise, and meditation.
This brings us to the conclusion that everyone needs to take care of their good health amidst the COVID-19 outbreak. We should try to strengthen our immune system as strong as we can by eating healthy foods, saying no to processed foods, taking enough rest, exercising daily, and, most importantly, by maintaining social distancing if we want to win this Coronavirus battle.
Now, when we talk about consuming healthy foods, do we actually know if they are healthy? What if they are not grown and processed naturally? For this, one must have adequate knowledge about the various fruits and vegetables we consume.
Meet Apni Kheti, a popular online agricultural platform, helping in the upliftment of farmers and rural India through information and knowledge sharing at the hands of its experienced and educated agricultural experts.
Visit the website or download the Apni Kheti app to learn in detail about horticulture, crops, and everything related to farming to figure out the difference between a natural/organic food and manually processed food, helping you consume the right food products to boost your immune system to fight coronavirus.