Health certainty, namely a robust immune system, is a common concern amidst our global crisis. We are ever more burdened with anxiety, frustration, uncertainty, and feeling out of control. Add social isolation to the mix and stress levels are at an all-time high.
Stress is ubiquitous in our modern culture on the best of days. It subtly seeds itself into your life when you are not paying attention. When it grabs hold, it begins to erode your health and wellness on the cellular level, leaving you vulnerable to disease and compromising your immunity.
It is important to realize that stress can come in physical, chemical, or emotional forms. It can be real or perceived. No one is immune!
We are exposed to hundreds, if not thousands, of chemicals in our environment, water, food supply, personal care products, and cleaning supplies. We are living with emotional wounds, toxic relationships, and financial pressures. The list is endless.
It is impossible to avoid all the stresses that come your way, but the solution lies in the way you react to it. The key factor is resilience, and it is determined by the flexibility within your nervous system to shift into a state of fight or flight when faced with a stressor, and then swiftly shift back into rest and rejuvenate mode when the threat has passed.
Unfortunately, your nervous system responds to all stressors in the same way, whether real or perceived. All of that worrying is doing you more harm than good!
The bottom line is that if you have constant, chronic stress coupled with low resilience, you lay open to various illnesses which can have a devastating effect on your health, now and in the future.
You have been given a gift. Even if it feels like punishment, you have the power to change that perspective.
Now is the perfect time to focus on building your resilience, and ultimately shoring up your immunity. Here are six things you can do to give yourself some grace and love yourself a little extra:
Hydrate: Most, if not all, of us are dehydrated. We just don't drink enough water. Strive to consume one half of your body weight in ounces of water every day, at a minimum. (Read “Sipping Society” to learn more)
Avoid sugar and processed foods: People who consume sugar tend to consume less water, vegetables, and fruit. This makes achieving health and boosting your immunity an uphill battle. Sugar and processed foods tend to promote an acidic environment within your body which can up your chemical stress and compromise your immunity.
Increase vegetable intake: Consider a food-first approach to building your immunity. Eat at least ten servings of diverse vegetables and two servings of fruit each day. Your body needs this abundance of plant nutrients to give your body what it requires and keep your cells working efficiently.
Move your body: A minimum of ten thousand steps is required as a baseline to be considered as having an active lifestyle. In addition to your steps, yoga, HIIT, Barre, and resistance training can provide hours of fun for the whole family. Movement helps to promote the elimination of toxins and promotes a “feel good” positive attitude.
Sleep: Sleep is an underrated influencer of health and resilience. It is important to get at least seven to eight hours of good quality sleep every night. In times of high stress, you may need an additional hour or two to help your body recover and build resilience.
Decrease your toxic burden: Chemicals are commonplace in our environment; there is no doubt about it. They wreak havoc on our health and hormone balance. Take some time to evaluate the things you can control like personal care items, household cleaners, fresh produce, and even electric and magnetic fields (EMFs). The Environmental Working Group has databases for you to see how toxic your choices are.
Please know that you have more control over your health and healing potential than what you have been led to believe. Small steps, taken consistently, can lead to big results. Reclaim your power and use this time to build your resilience.