Your overall health is just as crucial as your kidney health! If you are experiencing chronic kidney disease, even a minor illness can significantly impact you. The first level of defense is your immune system. If this system is not operating at its highest capability, it is easier for germs and bacteria to enter your body. While people can have naturally stronger immune systems, there are also ways to improve their functions.
As a patient at Durham Nephrology, you are our highest priority. That is why we have compiled a list of ways to improve your immune system so that you can avoid more significant problems later.
Improve Your Immune System With Simple Steps
Prioritize a Balanced Diet
A well-balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats is essential for a robust immune system. Include immune-boosting foods such as citrus fruits, berries, garlic, ginger, turmeric, spinach, and yogurt. These foods contain vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that support immune function. Avoid excessive sugar and processed foods, as they can weaken immune response. Opt for a diverse and colorful diet to ensure you get a wide range of nutrients necessary for optimal immune function.
Regular physical activity has numerous benefits, including strengthening the immune system. Exercise improves circulation, which allows immune cells to move freely throughout the body, enhancing their effectiveness. It also reduces stress hormones, lowers inflammation, and promotes better sleep—all of which contribute to a healthier immune system. Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise each week and strength training exercises to build overall fitness.
Get Sufficient Sleep
Adequate sleep is vital for immune health and overall well-being. During sleep, our bodies repair and regenerate cells, including immune cells. Lack of sleep can weaken the immune response and increase susceptibility to infections. Aim for 7-9 hours of quality sleep each night. Establish a consistent sleep schedule, create a relaxing bedtime routine, and ensure your sleep environment is relaxed, dark, and comfortable.
Chronic stress can suppress the immune system, making you more susceptible to illnesses. Incorporate stress-management techniques into your daily routine, such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, yoga, or engaging in hobbies that bring you joy. Regular physical activity, time in nature, and connection with loved ones are also effective stress reducers. Prioritize self-care and find activities that help you unwind and relax.
Proper hydration is essential for optimal immune function. Water helps flush out toxins from the body and supports lymph production, a fluid that carries immune cells. Drink at least eight glasses (64 ounces) of water daily, and adjust your intake based on activity level, climate, and individual needs. Include herbal teas, infused water, and hydrating fruits and vegetables to add variety to your fluid intake.
Practice Good Hygiene
Maintaining good hygiene practices is crucial for preventing the spread of infections. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially before eating and after using the restroom. Avoid touching your face, particularly your eyes, nose, and mouth. When sneezing or coughing, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or elbow. Regularly clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces in your home and workplace.
Find More Resources With Durham Nephrology
Don’t leave your immune system in the dust! By working to increase this system’s durability, you are doing the rest of your body an excellent service. These simple steps can help make that happen. As a chronic kidney disease patient, are you looking for more ways to improve your immune system? Our team is here to help you along the way. Check out our website or call us at (919) 477-3005 for more information.