A robust immune system is vital to stay healthy and live a quality life. As various sources of stress fire at you — especially the workplace — strong immunity must be your priority. When you’re in good health, you can do your job, care for your family and do what you love.
The responsibility of creating a positive office culture falls into the hands of HR professionals and the leadership team. But you also have a part to play by bringing self-care into the workplace. Here are thoughtful practices you can cultivate to combat stress and take care of your immunity in the office.
1. Pack a Power Lunch
You nourish your body by eating, so you only want to consume the good stuff. The body doesn’t discriminate between the good and harmful chemicals from food — it absorbs what the stomach digests, whether you eat processed foods or healthy salads.
If your workplace cafe offers limited healthy options, it’s best to pack a lunch instead of eating pizza, cakes or sandwiches that make you feel sluggish. Build a power plate by filling your lunch box with vegetables, lean protein and whole grains.
A balanced diet is essential for immunity, so add one to two 3-ounce servings of fatty fish a week, which is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids. These substances help lower blood pressure and regulate heart functions. Cook and bring your own lunch, and have a better mood every after meal.
2. Cut Down on Sugar in Your Diet
Another conscious choice you can make is cutting down on sugary drinks. Most workplaces offer free drinks, but leaders often don’t realize the options they make available for their workers are unhealthy.
Whether it’s coffee, soda or artificial juices, make a deliberate effort to reduce your glucose intake. Excess sugar in the blood can react with immune proteins and trigger changes in the immune system, potentially leading to atherosclerosis. It’s a condition where plaque builds up in the artery walls. You don’t have to eliminate sugar, but adjusting the sweetener content of your coffee can go a long way in protecting your immunity and health.
A woman’s body consists of about 55% water , and you must maintain this hydration level as metabolism and other activities like exercising and breathing release fluids out of the body. You must drink equal or more than the amount of water you lose to avoid dehydration. When dehydrated, you may experience dizzy spells, headaches, muscle weakness and tiredness — all signs of an interrupted immune system.
If you’re like most people who are aware they must drink a lot but forget to, bring your own water bottle, drink before you feel thirsty and track your intake using a mobile app. Hydration can protect you from diseases, so drink your water religiously and make it a part of your lunch routine.
4. Take Vitamins and Supplements
While the food you eat is the body’s primary source of nourishment, it can be challenging to get all your micronutrients from food alone. Your plate’s lack of variety may result in a vitamin or mineral deficiency.
Supplements are alternative sources of the good stuff you can’t get from food. They can support strong immune system functions and help you fight diseases.
You can get immunity-booster bottles easily, but visit your doctor first for your nutrient profile assessment. Vitamin and mineral pills sold in drug stores or pharmacies are generally safe. However, it’s better to consult your health care provider if you have an existing condition or allergic reaction to certain ingredients in these supplements.
5. Stretch During Breaks
Unlike decades ago — when working in an office was considered partly active — the shift from paper-based to digital work methods made office jobs sedentary. Before, you walked to a co-worker’s desk if you needed them to sign a document. Now, you sit in front of your computer and wait for the signed copy in your email.
Such a work lifestyle increases the risk of obesity by 5% and mortality by 7% for every two hours spent sitting. If you work a desk job all day, take a break every few minutes and do stretches. They can help reduce muscle tension , increase your productivity and reduce back pain.
6. Join Corporate Fitness Programs
Besides a brief session of stretches, you can significantly benefit from your company’s fitness programs. As employee wellness moves up the priority list of most organizations, you’ll want to take advantage of the free yoga classes, on-site fitness centers and online exercise training your workplace provides.
Physical activity is an integral pillar of health. When you exercise, the immune system’s fighters — your white blood cells — circulate more rapidly throughout the body. As a result, they could spot diseases early. On top of that, moving also releases endorphins that make you feel good and improve your mood.
7. Use Employee Wellness Benefits
Businesses launch employee wellness programs to support their workers’ well-being. Realizing employees are the most productive if they’re in their best mental and physical state, leaders opted to offer add-on perks to care for their workers.
If there are any programs applicable to you — such as smoking cessation or online therapy services — participate and use the benefits. They typically cost nothing, so taking advantage of them is a logical choice to improve your overall well-being.
Make Better Workplace Choices for a Resilient Immune System
Sometimes, the difference between a supportive and unsupportive workplace is the choices you make. What you eat, how much you drink and the time you spend being active all contribute to keeping you healthy. Follow these tips for a stronger immune system in the office.
This is a Sponsored post – the author has requested this post be shared on WE Magazine for Women and we were compensated for sharing.