Exercise and Your Immune System

people exercising
Daily Exercises

A quick look in Google reveals that exercise can improve your immune system in many ways. It can increase blood flow, help clear bacteria out of your airways, cause a brief elevation in body temperature that may be protective, strengthen antibodies to help fight infection, and reduce stress hormones. Who wouldn’t like to have benefits like that?

Start by Following a Moderately Energetic lifestyle

It is said that becoming obese is one of the fastest ways to ruin your health. So how do you prevent that from occurring to you? Staying active is and following a moderately energetic lifestyle is a GREAT way to begin. By living an active lifestyle you are not likely to ever become obese. I grew up on a farm and we didn’t have much but we grew our own food and we ate good! And we ate a lot! My Mom and Dad were both slim! Friends called me skinny! I remember our church had a potluck dinner once a month and as teenagers, several of us would see who could eat the most food. NEVER did you see any of us getting fat because the next day we were back to work in the field, the barn, the garden or milking the cows… Whatever our Dad’s had up their sleeves for us to do. All that food we ate earlier was burned up and we were soon at the table looking for more. The Energetic Lifestyle did the trick.

The trick in our Senior Years is to NOT Quit having at least a Moderately Energetic Lifestyle! We don’t need, necessarily, to ‘lift that bale and tote that barge’ but we do need to move and keep moving. Sitting all day does not burn the calories that turn into inches at the waistline. A quick stop at the local mall will provide you many sights to see and reasonable temperature any time of the year so drop by and take a look around. Hey guys… All our wives love to shop so get them out walking and tag along so YOU don’t need a new belt anytime soon.

Walking is a great way to Improve Your Immune System

A short walk about the same length as your lunch break is enough to keep your immunity functioning like it should. One study tracked 1,000 adults during flu season, and those who walked for 30 to 45 minutes a day had 43 percent less sick days than those who didn’t. Schedule in a brisk walk at least five times a week for at least 30 minutes to really reap the benefits of walking.

Walking for Exercise

If your lunch break does not allow for walking, get an app for your phone that tracks your steps through the day. I still work full time and discovered that some days I walk as much as six (6) miles inside my store! Who would have thought? No, it’s not all continuous but I do keep moving and moving is what keeps the joints loose and your blood pumping.

Something else to consider, you don’t need ANY fancy equipment to go walking. Of course, it’s nice to have a treadmill but they’re not necessary when sidewalks or trails in parks are available. Some will want to purchase some nice sweats (for cooler weather) or shorts (for warmer weather) so they look spiffy but that’s NOT what is important. MOVING is what is important… and doing it daily, if possible, will help your immune system do for you what it does best.

Supplementing is an easy way to Improve Your Immune System

Here’s where I will get some disagreement but it’s my strong belief that we can ALL benefit from supplements. As a youngster, my mentor introduced me to a book by Linus Pauling entitled, “How To Live Longer and Feel Better”. I did not take seriously what he shared with me at the time but later in my 20s and 30s I had some challenges and I dug out the book my mentor gave me and started reading. My first supplement I began using was Vitamin C. My doctor told me I was peeing my money down the toilet but I began noticing that I quit having colds in the winter. Just like the book suggested! As time has passed I have added additional supplements to improve my immune system. That proved VERY beneficial (in my opinion) during the 2020 – 2021 time frame when so many were being hospitalized by a spreading virus. My wife and I both made it through those years without having any illness at all and we contribute our success to having had strong immune systems. And yes, we got our shots when they became available.

Get Enough Sleep to Improve Your Immune System

In today s world, many of us do NOT get enough sleep. You might say you get enough sleep but do you get enough QUALITY sleep? Some who read this watch TV until just before going to bed OR fall asleep WATCHING TV. To really get high quality sleep you need to turn the TV off a good while before laying down to go to sleep. And, while I’m on a rant… Put down that phone too! The blue light from a cell phone messes with your brain and your ability to get into a good level of quality sleep too. So, maybe an hour or so before going to sleep, set your alarms and put your phone away.

If you need help sleeping, a little magnesium can help. Check with your doctor if you have any concerns about taking supplements.

No one method works for everybody. Mix it up!

Having a STRONG Immune System is, in my opinion, extremely important to “Aging Gently and Comfortably”. How you accomplish that is up to you. The steps above, any or all, can help. I highly encourage you to consider adding any of the steps that you are not now utilizing. Absolutely nothing I have mentioned will hurt you if you do things in moderation. You can always work up to your limits and… when you hit your limits… work there for a while before attempting to do more. Develop strength so you will not injure yourself by exercising.

In future article I will talk more about easy ways to do more exercises at home (on the cheap) that can be VERY beneficial and pain relieving for us seniors.

2 Comments

  1. Thanks for sharing this informative article. Exercising no matter how little is good for the overall functioning of the body. It improves blood flow around the body while keeping the body fit. Accumulation of excess fat in the body can be harmful in different ways. Exercising helps the body to burn these stored excess fats thereby increasing overall wellbeing.

    1. I was thinking about my wife as I wrote the article. She has her health challenges and her mobility is not the best. I do my best to encourage her to use her walker and get some exercise but the old saying… “You can take a horse to water but you can’t make them drink” applies in this case. For her, laying on the bed watching TV is her joy in life. We all need to learn EARLY in life the importance of exercise and the benefits it brings to us and our bodies.

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