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September 03, 2023 2 min read

Labor Day signifies a lot of things – opening day of dove season, it’s time to transition your wardrobe, and college football has FINALLY kicked off! It’s arguably the most wonderful time of the year!

BUT… it also means seasons are changing, temperatures are (hopefully) dropping, and above all, school is back in session which means that students and teachers alike are exposed to ALL the germs. Plus, cold and flu season is right around the corner. Now’s the time to take a little extra care of the ol’ immune system.

Here are a couple quick tips, total no-brainers (but we can always use a reminder), and a few foods to fill up on to boost your defense so you won’t find yourself sidelined from the fall fun!


That’s right, vitamins. The best defense is a good offense. Hopefully you’re already pretty religious about a regimen, vitamins are key to good health all year round, but check that you’re getting adequate (or even a little extra) B6, C, and E for a bit of a boost.


Listen, quantity and quality of sleep is the cornerstone of keeping yourself healthy. Your body and your brain both rely on rest to perform at their peak, so try to prioritize it.


Around the block, around the pool, around the bike path – it doesn’t matter if you prefer to walk, run, bike, swim, or skip, just get a move on. It helps ALL your systems function better, from pulmonary to cardiovascular and even your gut, and that will help your immune system focus on bigger threats.


Easier said than done with a calendar full of cookouts and tailgates, but do your best to cut down on the cocktails – or just be mindful of moderation. And on the occasions that you do over-imbibe a little (we can all get a little carried away after kickoff), make sure you counter it with an abundance of H2O. (Do we even need to mention it’s beyond time to quit smoking?)


Food is half the fun of football parties, so why not let your snacks do double duty? Don’t worry, you don’t have to be a bummer around the buffet, a lot of immune-boosting bites pair perfectly with a little pigskin-tossin’. For instance, sunflower seeds are a great sideline snack for any sport, and they’re full of nutrients, including phosphorous, magnesium, and vitamins B6 and E. You can easily add red bell peppers (rich in Vitamin C and beta-carotene) and broccoli (Vitamins A, C, and E, plus fiber and antioxidants) to your crudite tray. And, if you’re feeling fancy, crack a little crab or lobster – shellfish are excellent sources of zinc.

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