The immune system is the most important defense mechanism that is present in your body. The better your immune system, the better your body reacts to the infections and keeps them off your body. There is a fact that daily lifestyle habits tend to influence your immunity. Here are some daily habits that harm the immune system that you must quit.
1. Stay up late at night
If you usually stay up late, watch TV, or do your work, you are at high risk of weak immunity. When you are sleeping, your body releases many types of cytokines, which help your body fight infections. When you lack sleep, it reduces the cytokines produced and makes your body weaker before succumbing to diseases. A 2017 study was conducted on 11 pairs of twins with different sleeping habits. The result pointed out that the twin who had sleep deprivation was more depressed than their sibling. Therefore, getting enough sleep is the most important thing to ensure a strong immune system.
2. Drink alcoholic beverages daily
One of the bad habits that harm the immune system is drinking alcoholic beverages every day. Overconsumption of alcohol will impede white & red blood cell production. As a result, this will weaken your immunity over time. Besides, alcoholic drinks have many negative health effects because the alcohol prevents the ability of the body to absorb essential nutrients, leading to deficiencies.
3. Neglect personal hygiene
When it comes to a good immune system, proper hygiene is a must. If you neglect your personal hygiene, your immune system will surely suffer.
Unhygienic habits increase the risk of being exposed to harmful germs, which in turn makes you susceptible to more infections and diseases.
Practice good hygiene by brushing your teeth twice daily, washing your hands before eating and after using the bathroom, keeping your nails clean, taking a shower daily, cooking food in a hygienic manner, wearing clean clothes, and more. It can go a long way in boosting your immunity.
Avoid using other people’s belongings, as germs and viruses can be transmitted by sharing things that are for personal use only.
4. Overdose on sugar
If you often eat or drink something sweet to satisfy your sweet tooth, you can suffer from weak immunity.
Refined sugar can reduce the ability of the white blood cells to kill germs. Sugar prevents vitamin C from getting into the white blood cells, resulting in weakened immunity.
Interestingly, the immune-suppressing effect of sugar starts within 30 minutes after ingestion and may last for hours.
If you need to eat something sweet, opt for fruits like oranges, apples, mangos, kiwis, watermelon, strawberries, and others that contain natural sugars to satisfy your craving. The vitamin C in these fruits also will help your immune system work properly.
5. Eat junk food
Junk food is generally high in fat. One of the main causes of obesity is eating excess fat. Basically, your immune system can be affected by a diet high in saturated fat. Saturated fats trigger the immunity to begin attacking healthy cells. According to a 2014 study, overconsumption of saturated fat has a negative effect on the immune system. It can lead to reduced control of infections, increased inflammation, increased rates of cancer, as well as increased risk for allergic & auto-inflammatory diseases.
6. Lack water intake
We all know that two-thirds of our body is water so if you do not supply enough water you will surely suffer from a decrease in immunity. Frontiers in Zoology (2013) claimed that the osmotic state greatly affects the immune system. A person is advised to drink from eight to 10 glasses of water per day. However, this amount can be changed, depending on the climate, constitution, and overall health.
7. Not use sunscreen
This may sound very lame and vague but not using sunscreen can be a major cause of skin-related diseases and even cancer! Exposing your body to early morning sun will give you the necessary Vitamin D, but when you spend a long time under the scorching heat of the sun, exposing your bare skin, you are harming it. It can also aggravate yeast infections and thereby a lowered immunity.
8. Drink too much coffee
Caffeinated drinks and coffee are never good for our health, especially our immune system. Drinking too much will increase your anxiety, worsen your nervous system and put more pressure on your body. Cortisol, a hormone released when you are stressed, will harm your body and make it more prone to inflammation and diseases such as heart issues, high cholesterol, and blood sugar levels.
This habit is one of the daily habits that harm the immune system.
You are advised to drink one or two cups of coffee per day to maintain your immune system.
9. Not exercise regularly
Exercise plays an important role in increasing your immune system and preventing diseases caused by infection. Scientists pointed out that people who exercise regularly not only keep their bodies fit but also effectively boost their immunity by increasing the number of white blood cells, which is vital to fighting bacteria and germs. Therefore, if you want to increase your immune system and keep your body healthy, try to exercise or play sports regularly.