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6 Simple, Science-Backed Ways to Strengthen Your Immune System

If you’re looking for ways to boost overall immune system function, start here! What exactly are immune system functions in the body? The primary function is to protect your body from threats like germs that can make you sick.

The immune system is comprised of cells, organs, and proteins that, when fortified, create a powerful defense against infections. When you are exposed to harmful germs or bacteria, it is your immune system that keeps you healthy.

In terms of strengthening your immunity, the best defense is a good offense. And learning simple ways to boost immune system function is the first step.

There are many ways to boost immune system functions, and in this article we will explore six simple, scientifically-proven ways to support a strong immunity. Here’s to your health!

Here Are 6 Ways Science Says Can Strengthen Your Immune System Naturally:


1. Don’t Just Exercise – Be Intentionally Active

There’s no denying exercise is one of the key components of living a healthy life. It lowers blood pressure, improves heart health, and protects against many different illnesses.

“Just like a healthy diet, exercise can contribute to general good health and therefore to a healthy immune system,” according to Harvard Health. “It may contribute even more directly by promoting good circulation, which allows the cells and substances of the immune system to move through the body freely and do their job efficiently.”

Practice These 5 Immunity Boosting Yoga Poses

Interestingly, moderate exercise is scientifically proven to increase vaccine effectiveness in people with compromised immune systems.

YouAligned offers a free trial of our premium YA Classes online yoga and fitness membership so you can start moving today!


2. Allow Yourself the Extra Rest You Need

While you sleep, your immune system releases proteins called cytokines, which support a healthy night’s rest. When you have an infection, cytokines increase.

And sleep deprivation reduces these protective cytokines, making you more prone to getting sick.

“Infection-fighting antibodies and cells are reduced during periods when you don’t get enough sleep,” the Mayo Clinic reports.

It’s scientifically proven that our bodies require more rest during majorly stressful events.

So in addition to making sure you’re getting enough rest, also allow yourself added time for sleep if your body asks for it.

Can’t drag yourself out of bed for that 7am alarm? Let yourself sleep an extra hour. If you’re not able to do that, then be sure you schedule a nap in that day or go to bed an hour earlier that night.

Want to fall asleep faster? Try this 30-Minute Bedtime Yoga Sequence


3. Pay Special Attention to What You Eat and Drink

These include fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds – all of which are packed with antioxidants that help fight harmful pathogens and reduce inflammation caused by free radicals.

Whole plant foods also contain fiber, which promotes healthy gut bacteria.

The healthier your gut microbiome, the healthier your immune system.

In terms of foods to avoid, cut down on added sugar, and steer clear of fried and processed food.

Ready to ditch the sugar? Get Healthy With a Sugar Cleanse – Here’s How In 10 Steps

Hydration is essential to boost your immune system.

Many people assume drinking water is all it takes to stay hydrated. But H20 is only part of the equation. Did you know movement improves hydration? As counterproductive as it may sound, exercise increases circulation throughout your body and supports electrolyte and nutrient absorption.

But here’s the real reason why hydration is important: it protects you from dehydration. When you’re dehydrated, it can negatively impact your digestion, heart and kidney function, which makes you more susceptible to illness.

Now for what not to drink: a lot of alcohol. While having a glass of wine or two is fine every now and then, when it comes to our immunity, it’s so important to keep our alcohol intake to a minimum.

4. Try to Stress Less

Chronic stress increases inflammation and weakens our immune system by causing an imbalance in immune cell function.

Specifically, research shows that long-term stress can “suppress protective immune responses and/or exacerbate pathological immune responses.”

Stressing less is easier said than done, but there are many helpful stress management tools at our disposal – yoga, meditation, and mindfulness being one of the most effective.

Yoga is a great way to reduce stress! Have you tried Stress Less on YA Classes yet?

Yoga Class
With Melody Beuzelin

In addition to staying physically active for a strong immune system, it’s also important to practice other stress-relieving activities like breathwork, meditation, and mindfulness to keep your mind calm.

A stressed out mind and nervous system can lead to a compromised immune system.

5. Boost Immune System Function With the Right Supplements

Aside from the obvious immune-boosting power of Vitamin C, there are several other vitamins and supplements that support a healthy and strong immune function.

Known for its anti-inflammatory effects, Vitamin D and Vitamin A are also great for preventing infection. Research shows both vitamins are helpful for “modulating tissue-specific immune responses and for preventing and/or treating inflammation and autoimmunity.”

Turmeric also has powerful immune-supporting properties, containing the anti-inflammatory compound curcumin. To optimize effectiveness and absorption, Turmeric and Vitamin D can be taken together.

Your gut is the gateway to your overall health, so it’s also important to take probiotics for a healthy gut microbiome.

In addition, zinc is beneficial when it comes to maintaining a healthy immune system. Zinc deficiency can cause inflammation (a contributing factor to illness), so taking zinc supplements will help keep you healthy and strong.

Elderberry is another great supplement for warding off infection. Studies show it can reduce cold and flu symptoms and may speed up recovery.


6. Schedule Time Daily to Do What Lights You Up

Activities that improve your mood and mental state directly correlate to a stronger immune system, and science proves it.

Some ideas include exercising while listening to your favorite music. (Shoutout to my oldschool 80’s workout mix!) Nothing puts me in the present moment more than listening to Whitney Houston.

Also, journaling is a great daily habit for your mental health. Writing down your thoughts can help reframe your perspective and give you clarity regarding what’s causing you stress and anxiety.

Boost Your Immune System to Increase Your Chances of Staying Healthy

There are many ways to support your immune system functions, and this list is a great place to start for simple ways that don’t require a lot of time or effort to implement. Take this opportunity to examine what from this list you already do, and what you are interested in adding to your wellness regimen.

If you want to strengthen your immune system naturally, switch to making these healthy lifestyle choices. Your mind and body will thank you!

All included information is not intended to treat or diagnose. The views expressed are those of the author and should be attributed solely to the author. For medical questions or concerns, please consult your healthcare provider.

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This Deliciously Addicting Turmeric Latte Will Boost Your Immunity (Easy Recipe)
This turmeric latte recipe - also known as a golden milk latte - is delicious, warming, easy to make, and boosts your immune system too!
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Kaitlin Vogel

Kaitlin has worked as a professional writer and editor in New York City for over seven years. Beyond her professional experience in journalism and psychology, it is her keen interest in personal development that has driven every one of her career decisions thus far. She's committed to creating content that matters.

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