One of the best defenses in this time of the Corona Virus, and with any sickness and disease, is a strong immune system. Here are some simple things we can do to build our immunity and stay healthy.
Avoiding Sugar. According to Nutrition Diva Monica Reinagel, Eating excess sugar may put your white blood cells into a temporary coma. We need our white blood cells active to fight invading pathogens. Without them, these bacteria and viruses will multiply.
Sleep. Most of our healing from daily stresses is done when we sleep. When we deprive ourselves of sleep, there is more catch up for the body the following night. This takes a toll on your neuroendocrine and immune-inflammatory molecules known as cytokines, as well as stress hormones like cortisol and norepinephrine. 7-8 hours is recommended. Recent studies have given the thumbs up for naps. A 2015 study in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, showed that even short naps during the day was enough to erase the loss of sleep the night before.
Reduce Stress. When we’re stressed, the immune system’s ability to fight off antigens is reduced. That’s why we are more susceptible to infections. The stress hormone corticosteroid can suppress the effectiveness of the immune system. With stress, we tend to pick up bad habits, like eating junk food or drinking alcohol, which will continue to decrease our ability to fight off antigens.
Mcleod, S.A. (2010). Stress, illness and the immune system. Simply Psychology.
Eating Fruits and Veggies. As a general rule, the darker the skin, the higher the antioxidants. However, all the different colors of fruits and vegetables have different immune-boosting properties. They also are packed with vitamins and minerals that our body needs to stay healthy. A study showed that green vegetables — from bok choy to broccoli — are the source of a chemical signal that is important to a fully functioning immune system. They do this by ensuring that immune cells in the gut and the skin known as intra-epithelial lymphocytes (IELs) function properly.
“Eating green veggies improves immune defenses.” ScienceDaily, 17 October 2011.
Exercise. Physical activity may help flush bacteria out of the lungs and airways. This may reduce your chance of getting a cold, flu, or other illness. Exercise causes change in antibodies and white blood cells (WBC). As we mentioned before, These are the body’s immune system cells that fight disease. These antibodies or WBCs circulate more rapidly, so they could detect illnesses earlier than they might have before. The brief rise in body temperature during and right after exercise may prevent bacteria from growing. This temperature rise may help the body fight infection better. (This is similar to what happens when you have a fever.) Generally, weight-bearing exercise gets your metabolism going faster then aerobic exercise. However try to do both. Remember, simply taking a walk is good exercise. You want to move! Use soup cans as weights at home. Be creative!
Exercise and immunity: MedlinePlus Medica Encyclopedia. Jan 14, 2018
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Dr. Michael Failla DC
Monmouth Pain and Rehab.