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Why it Really is…Survival of the Fittest

The law of the jungle means that the fittest survive. The same law applies to an emergency situation. The more fit you are, the more likely you are to make it through challenges in the long run. How do you prepare yourself for an emergency situation? By making sure you are physically, mentally and immunologically fit! That’s right – immunologically fit.

What most people don’t realize is that, in a long-term survival situation, your immunity will be tested as much as your physical and mental fitness. Spending time in the outdoors will expose you to a whole new host of microorganisms and some of these can make you sick. If you enter

this scenario with an already weakened immune system you won’t last as long as someone who has a strong immune system defending them.

Health Care Collage Words Medicine BackgroundThe way urban societies live nowadays is not so good for your health and likewise your immunity. To build up your immunity you need to start by changing your whole lifestyle. The way you eat, sleep and exercise can all impact your immune health. A simple way to boast your immune system is to cut down on the things that are obviously bad for you. Don’t smoke. Cut back on alcohol. Eat more fruits and vegetables. Get adequate amounts of sleep and water. All of this sounds simple enough, stuff your mum always told you, but the impact of these changes on your health is astounding. This is because eating healthy foods provides your body with micronutrients that boost immune cells. Exercise causes a rise in body temperature that stalls the growth of some bacteria. Quitting smoking helps your cilia (the hair like cells that line your lung) clear pathogens from the lungs better. All these factors are great immune boosters and studies have shown people in healthy shape battle pathogens better.

There are also lots of foods you can eat to increase the power of your immune system. Your skin is your first barrier against the outside world and all the bacteria and viruses waiting to enter it. If you eat vitamin A containing vegetables like sweet potatoes and carrots, you strengthen your skin. The plus side is that these foods also contain beta carotene which is good for your vision. Tea is another health food that is rich in antioxidants and helps fight against bacteria. Garlic is also a super food to include in your diet. Garlic contains the active ingredient allicin and studies have shown this to prevent colds in individuals who consume garlic regularly. If you are a fan of seafood, then be sure to include lots of shellfish in your diet. Shellfish like oysters and crabs are rich in selenium. This micronutrient helps your immune cells produce cytokines which helps them fight against pathogenic invaders. Another antioxidant rich food is barley and oats. These antioxidants come from the fiber beta glucan in oats. The best immune boasting food is yogurt. Yogurt contains lots of probiotic supplements. Probiotics come from live bacteria found in yogurt. While this might seem counterintuitive, these live bacteria produce the chemicals needed to promote healthy flora in the gut. This gut flora then moderates the type of organisms that can enter the body.

In short, build up your health and immunity. These are the two factors that will most help you in a state of emergency. The fittest and healthiest are also the best prepared.

Zyana Morris is a passionate blogger who loves to write on trending health, fitness and lifestyle topics. She is a featured author at HealthableUplifting FamiliesInscriber Mag, Hello Mamas and few others. Her favorite quote “It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop”. You can follow her through Facebook and Twitter.

MFN Contributing Author

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