Five ways to winter-proof your immune system

Each year Australians book more than 80,000 doctors appointments for cold and flu related illnesses alone1.

Expert Scientist at USANA, Sheila Zhou, says, “The cooler months are often associated with sneezing, coughing, and fevers, so it’s no surprise many of us hate winter. Staying healthy during this time however, doesn’t have to be difficult. By implementing a cold and flu prevention regimen before the season starts will boost your immune system significantly.”

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Ms. Zhou shares her professional advice on how to winter-proof your immune system this season:

1. Soak up the sunshine

A significant number of Australians are deficient in vitamin D. Did you know that just 20 minutes of sunlight each day significantly boosts the production of vitamin D in your body? Vitamin D not only helps protect your body in maintaining healthy immune function, but it also assists in general wellbeing. Unfortunately, with the days getting shorter and the daylight hours diminishing, winter can be a difficult time to get the necessary sunshine, soVitamin D supplements can be beneficial.

2. Drink like a fish

Like any other time of year, staying hydrated during winter is extremely important. Even though you may not feel as thirsty or sweat as much during the cooler months, drinking plenty of water is still essential to help eliminate waste and prime your body against infections from pathogens.

By implementing a cold and flu prevention regimen before the season starts will boost your immune system significantly

3. Get Moving

Never underestimate the importance of regular activity. Exercising is of course a great way to get into shape, but it also increases the number of natural killer cells in our bodies that fight off infection. So even if you only have time to walk around the block, making the effort goes a long way in keeping you healthy and infection free as the weather cools down.

4. Get creative in the kitchen

Eating brightly coloured fruit and vegetables is also a great way to keep infections at bay. They are rich in vitamin C and E and antioxidants. Their ability to increase the functionality of your immune system means that adding these fresh fruits and vibrant veggies to your daily diet helps your body safe guard itself from nasty viruses, while tasting delicious too!

Never underestimate the importance of regular activity

5. Stress Less

You’re probably aware that stress isn’t good for you, but very few people are aware of how much it actually impacts your health. Stress takes an enormous toll on the immune system and makes you more vulnerable to everything from a common cold to major diseases. So if you don’t already, make sure you get enough sleep and take time out to do the things you enjoy.

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[1] BUPA – Colds and Flu Symptoms and Treatment


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Sheila-Zhou-Leaders-in-HeelsSheila Zhou

Sheila Zhou holds a Bachelor Degree of Science in biology from the prestigious Fudan University in China. She is an accomplished scientist having spent six years as a research scientist in medical research field in Australia, and has contributed to and co-authored 12 scientific papers in peer-reviewed journals. Sheila joined USANA Health Sciences in 2003. Sheila is passionate about evidence-based nutritional medicine. She strongly believes in holistic approach to health and well-being through optimal nutrition, exercise, and a healthy life style.