Being sick is no fun, especially in the summer. While trying to balance work with a social life, we often end up slacking on what's most important...our health!
When you start feeling run down, stop what you're doing and prioritize self-care instead of trudging through to the point of complete exhaustion. I've outlined a few ways to boost immunity and stave off that next cold.
How to Not Get Sick — Follow These Tips
Get Plenty of Sleep – How much have you been sleeping recently? With those late summer nights gazing at the stars and dancing the night away, somehow catching z's becomes less of a priority. How many hours of sleep are needed varies from person to person, but aim for a solid 7-8 hours per night. Allowing our body time to rest and restore itself is an essential part of staying healthy and happy.
Drink Your Fluids – Hydration is key to great health. As a rule of thumb, aim to drink half your weight in fluid ounces (e.g., if you weigh 150 lbs, drink 75 ounces of water) every day. Also great for hydration is a home-brewed, low-caffeine iced tea or green juice.
Try Essential Oils – When I start feeling under the weather, I look to my natural arsenal of therapeutic-grade essential oils to nurse me back to health. I use a combination of clove, cinnamon, eucalyptus, rosemary, and peppermint oils on a regular basis. I diffuse them, drink them in water, and rub them on my feet.
Eat Well – When you get that first feeling of a stuffy nose or a sore throat, check what you’re feeding your body. Instead of summer hot dogs, focus on eating leafy greens, whole grains, and foods rich in antioxidants such as blueberries.
Take “Me Time” – When we're overscheduled and overworked, sometimes our only "me time" is when we're running errands or doing laundry. Not exactly relaxing! We run from one event to the next and end up wearing ourselves out in the process. If you don’t already prioritize true downtime for yourself, consider giving it a try. I schedule a recurring invite in my calendar for my "me time." Sounds silly, but that way, I always have self-care non-negotiably built into my schedule.
How Does Stress Affect Immunity?
You've probably noticed that when you get a cold, you've been burning the candle at both ends; not getting enough sleep or succumbing to stress.
Excess stress negatively affects immunity and leaves you susceptible to illness. Have you ever felt that tickle in the back of your throat after a challenging work deadline or excess stress? Yup. Burnout can take a real toll on our health if we aren't careful.
When you start feeling under the weather, listen to your body and slow down. It always knows best, but we usually don’t listen to it enough. We don't need to do anything radical to avoid getting sick unnecessarily. Simply getting enough sleep, eating right, hydrating, and curtailing excess stress is enough to boost immunity.
You've got this!
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