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Things You Can Do to Avoid Illness

By Sara Butler

With cold and flu season here, you're probably devoting a little time to things you can do to avoid getting sick. Of course, you can do the traditional things such as wash your hands and make sure you get enough Vitamin C, but there are some other things you can do to support a well-functioning immune system to help you stay healthy. Here are a few!

Get Outside

Researchers have discovered that being outside can have an impact on your health. It turns out that getting outside helps you to relax, helping to boost your mood and your immune system. Plus, the Vitamin D your body gets from a little sunshine can help to support a healthy immune system, too, along with stronger bones and better sleep. So get out in the sun and soak up some nature if you want to help stay healthy this winter.

Rest

Exercise is a great way to support your health as well as your immune system, but it's important to remember to take breaks in your workout schedule too. Working out too much can actually place excess stress on your body and create an inflammatory response that can sink your immune system. That's why you should have active recovery days in your schedule where you take a break from hitting it hard and do something else such as go for a walk or take a yoga class.

Snuggle an Animal

If you don't have an allergy to animals, then feel free to snuggle up -- it's good for your immune system. Studies have found that petting a dog for just 20 minutes can help increase the antibodies in your system that are key to a well-functioning immune system.

Laugh Out Loud

OK, it doesn't have to be out loud, but laughing does have a positive impact on your immune system function. So, watch your favorite funny movie or read a joke book. Doing so can help you feel more optimistic and positive, two things that can have a real impact on the function o your immune system. Remember, when you feel distressed, stressed, and overwhelmed, you release stress hormones that actually don't allow your immune system to work at its best. Beat back the stress with a little laughter. It really is the best medicine.

You can avoid illness a lot of ways. Try a few of these and you'll stay healthy in body, mind, and spirit!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Englewood, Colo.

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