Improving Immune System Function
A healthy and effective immune system is essential for preventing infectious diseases caused by invading micro-organisms and controlling allergic and inflammatory reactions in the body. White blood cells, called macrophages, neutrophils and other phagocytes (cells that eat), are able to identify and remove invading micro-organisms, toxins, foreign cells, cancer cells, mutating cells, dead and/or dying cells present in your body. These immune cells, along with natural killer cells, are the centre of your body’s primary immune system. If the immune system is working correctly, it will prevent infection, disease and cancer. Regulators of the immune system include your T helper cells of which there are three major types. T helper 1 cells regulate our defence against bacteria, viruses, fungi, parasites and also responsible for attacking cancer cells. It is these cells that are stimulated to prevent infection and help fight cancer. T helper 2 cells promote the production of antibodies against foreign matter in the blood stream. An excess of these cells may manifest itself as allergic disorders. T helper 3 cells are responsible for controlling the correct balance between T helper 1 and 2 cells which is critical for good health. These cells malfunction by overgrowth of unhealthy bacteria in your gut. All these cells communicate via glycoproteins on their cell walls known as glyconutrients.
People with impaired immune function are more susceptible to invading micro-organisms. Conditions of immune compromise include: Chronic fatigue/fibromyalgia patients, HIV patients, patients undergoing radiation or chemotherapy, allergy suffers, toxic people, people over 40 whose immune system begin to slow through the aging process; people suffering recurrent fungal, bacterial, viral or parasitic infections; people with poor nutrition, geriatric patients; people with bronchitis, pneumonia, Epstein bar virus, periodontal disease, people with a hormone imbalance, the common cold; diabetics, athletic trainers and people under stress. These people should take certain steps to improve their immune system in order to avoid infection and prevent the onset of disease and certain cancers. The first steps to improve your immune system should be:
- Avoid and Eliminate Toxins that can lower immunity which include chemical sprays, heavy metals, solvents, and highly processed foods. This can also include overgrowth of unfriendly bacteria, yeasts, or parasites in your gut.
- Exercise. Lymph, our immunity fluid that removes pathogens from our body does not move much unless we move our muscles. Therefore exercise is essential for maintaining a healthy circulation of our lymphatic system.
- Relax. In periods of stress our immune system is weakened by elevated cortisol levels thus increasing our suscepability to infection. Any form of relaxing activity such as yoga, meditation, massage, gardening, walking in nature, or any activity that you enjoy boosts your immunity.
- Unnecessary use of antibiotics. Apart from being responsible for creating stronger resistant bacteria, the wrongful use of antibiotics against self limiting infections never allows your immune system to develop its own powerful resistance.
- Nutraceutical preparations are available which have been scientifically proven to boost your immune system function. Some of the most potent immune system stimulators are discussed below:
How to Boost your Immune Function
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