Your first line of defense is to choose a healthy lifestyle. Following general good-health guidelines is the single best step you can take toward naturally keeping your immune system strong and healthy. Every part of your body, including your immune system, functions better when protected from environmental assaults and bolstered by healthy-living strategies such as these:

– Don’t smoke
– Eat a diet high in fruits and vegetables.
– Exercise regularly.
– Maintain a healthy weight.
– If you drink alcohol, drink only in moderation.
– Get adequate sleep.
– Take steps to avoid infection, such as washing your hands frequently and cooking meats thoroughly.
– Try to minimize stress.

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Diet and Immune Defence
Micronutrients, zinc, selenium, iron, copper, folic acid, and vitamins A, B6, C, and E are all important for immune function. In the UK the average adult gets adequate intakes of these nutrients, however if you catch illness quickly or generally have illness longer than expected, looking at your diet and increasing your intake of foods with these nutrients in can help.

Phoebe Wharton, nutritionist
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