Medically Reviewed by Poonam Sachdev
Regular exercise plays a starring role in keeping you healthy and preventing illnesses. It strengthens your immune system and helps fight viral and bacterial infections.
Could it keep you from getting the flu this year? Or what if you’ve already come down with symptoms? Should you push yourself to work out anyway? We’ve got answers for you.
Can It Prevent the Flu or a Cold?
Maybe. The best way to stay well is to keep your immune system strong. When you exercise, your white blood cells — the ones that fight infections — travel through your body faster and do their jobs better.
Experts say you should get at least 30 minutes of moderate cardio like walking, swimming, biking, or running each day.
Regular exercise may be the ticket. And you don’t have to run a marathon, either. Moderate activity is all you need.
Some studies show that “moderate intensity” exercise may cut down the number of colds you get. That type of activity includes things like a 20- to 30-minute walk every day, going to the gym every other day, or biking with your kids a few times a week.
In one study in the American Journal of Medicine, women who walked for a half-hour every day for 1 year had half the number of colds as those who didn’t exercise. Researchers found that regular walking may lead to a higher number of white blood cells, which fight infections.
In another study, researchers found that in 65-year-olds who did regular exercise, the number of T-cells — a specific type of white blood cell — was as high as those of people in their 30s.
Read more https://www.webmd.com/cold-and-flu/exercise-when-you-have-the-flu