Now is the perfect time to talk about the number one thing you can do right now for your immune system. We’re coming into flu season and this is the time of year where you typically see flu and ILI’s, which are influenza like illnesses.
THE TRUTH ABOUT VIRUSES THIS TIME OF YEAR
Only about 10% of ILIs are actually the flu. Most of the time what you have is a virus that appears like the flu and has similar symptoms. And contrary to popular belief, there isn’t just one virus hopping around right now getting everybody. There are multiple viruses all the time.
The flu is still a thing, and pneumonia is still a thing. Influenza like viruses are still a thing. They’re everywhere. But why is it more prevalent at this time of year?
YOUR AWESOME IMMUNE SYSTEM
Your immune system is pretty interesting and it has multiple layers to it. The innate immune system is the one that will attack anything that comes in that’s a foreign object. So it could be a pathogen, it could be an injury. Or it could be something else like a cold or flu virus or bacterial infection.
All of those things will initially be attacked by your any immune system. You’re going to have this initial response, your body knows what to do right away. In fact, your immune system starts on your skin. You have this microbiome that lives on your skin and it helps attack invaders right from the get go.
Then you also have an adaptive immune system and that’s the part that learns from previous experience. So if you’ve been sick with something before, it’s why you don’t get it again (for example, the chicken pox), because your immune system learned how to fight against that one thing. Then if you’re ever exposed to it again, your immune system is going to jump into action, know exactly what to do, and wipe it out before it before you have symptoms.
So your immune system is actually super fascinating. But one of the key things that your immune system needs, both your innate and your adaptive, is vitamin D in order to function correctly.
WHY YOU NEED VITAMIN D TO SUPPORT YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM
Vitamin D is not even a vitamin. It’s a hormone and your body would make it on its own if you were getting enough sun exposure every day, which is very difficult these days. Right now it’s really difficult if you live near me in Buffalo because it’s just raining all the time.
Also, we have a tendency to wear sunscreen all the time when we go outside which means our skin is not really exposed and not able to make usable vitamin D. This is the time of year we really start to notice that that drops off because we’re not spending time outside. It’s not very sunny out the sun is less intense, and we start to see people getting sick.
There have been many studies that show the difference in people who have adequate vitamin D versus people who are deficient in vitamin D, and how the deficient people are more sick. If you have lower vitamin D levels, you are more susceptible to getting sick or more susceptible to getting severely sick.
OTHER CAUSES OF ILLNESS DURING FLU SEASON
Secondly, it is sugar season. So Halloween, and then Thanksgiving dessert and then Christmas cookies….. We are dumping sugar in our bodies for the next two months like no other time of year. Sugar wreaks havoc on your immune system.
Now you’re not getting enough vitamin D and you’re eating too much garbage food. That is like the perfect storm to make you more successful susceptible to any pathogen that’s coming your way.
So one of the best things you can do right now is make sure your vitamin D levels are adequate. It is possible to get too much vitamin D, it’s just very unlikely if you’re taking over the counter of vitamin D supplements. But one thing you can do is ask your doctor if you feel like that your vitamin D is off. Always check with your doctor before you take anything.
DON’T STRESS OVER IT
I take vitamin D every day, 1000 IUs. If somebody in my house is coming down with something I’ve ramped that up for everybody in the house just because I know that if one person got something we’ve all been exposed. If our vitamin D is up, our immune system is going to function better.
If you’re constantly stressed out and worry that you’re going to get sick, you’re not helping things because you’re just raising cortisol levels. That negatively effects your immune function when you’re stressed out.
Just go take some vitamin D; that’s something so easy that you can do that is going to be helpful. If you aren’t sure how much you should take, or if it’s something that might interfere with another medication you’re on, find out from your doctor if it’s a good idea for you.
10 DAYS 10 YEARS YOUNGER THIS HOLIDAY SEASON
If you want to get some help navigating through the holidays and staying healthy, reducing your stress for the holidays, maybe tweaking recipes and finding out how to make yummy delicious Thanksgiving foods that are still healthy…..
This is something I have perfected over the years and teach in my 10 Days 10 Years Younger program is starting on November 11, 2021. So in just a couple of weeks, through those 10 days, you’re going to learn a little bit more about:
- how your immune system works,
- how to stay healthy,
- how to how to fit fitness into your life,
- how to reduce stress at this time of year,
- how to navigate eating in a restaurant or at a party while still heading towards your goals instead of totally derail yourself so that you don’t head into January five pounds heavier and coming down with something.
So this program is designed to design your game plan for you to help you through it all and give you that support. This is my lowest cost program. It is $39 and is by far the most economical way to work with me.
I you have been thinking about finding out how I can help you with a health issue, this would be the ideal program for you. It’s group coaching and you get the benefit of the group as well. You’re going to get to hear other people’s struggles or questions that you might have that you didn’t think to ask.
To join, just send me a message on Facebook or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You’re gonna have a great holiday season and it starts with just 10 days!