We’d all love to have a healthy immune system, and most of us know that our nutrition plays an important role in achieving that goal. After all, you are what you eat, right? That said, new research is showing that the interconnectivity of body functions shows that while you eat to help support your overall wellness, you are also nourishing your body’s ability for stress reduction.
What You Eat for a Healthy Immune System Can Keep Your Stress Down
Over time, stress can take its toll on your overall wellness. There are many steps that you can take to help to counteract that impact. This includes everything from exercising on a regular basis to mindfulness practices such as breathing exercises or meditation. That said, the foods you eat can also impact the stress control you have at hand.
This is good news as it places some of your ability to control your stress in your own hands…and tummy. At the same time, it is even better news when you consider that the foods you’d be consuming to help manage your stress also often happen to be the ones recommended for a healthy immune system.
Which Foods Are Best for a Healthy Immune System?
New research published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics has found that a healthier diet overall is linked to a reduced allostatic load. What does that mean? An allostatic load is the concept of the overall buildup of biological risks that have accumulated due to chronic stress. By eating healthfully and supporting your gut’s wellness, you’ll reduce that allostatic load and simultaneously give your body what it needs for a healthy immune system.
The researchers found that stress management and a healthy immune system appear to go hand-in-hand. Moreover, a nutritious diet supports them both simultaneously. According to the researchers, vegetables and food sources of omega-3 fats, when incorporated into an overall nutritious and balanced diet, can help to provide notable cortisol level regulation for stress control and immune support.
Cortisol is often known as the stress hormone. It’s what the body produces to result in the fight-or-flight response. That hormone’s levels are kept unnecessarily high from the stresses we often experience in our lives including everything from tight schedules to getting too little sleep at night and from eating poorly to dealing with large and difficult issues on a regular basis. Controlling that hormone’s production can help to ease the stress we feel, and as a result, can also support a healthy immune system.