5 Easy Steps to Boost Your Immune System
It is a well-established fact that prevention is better than cure. Medical professionals world over recommend that the best time to cure an infection is before it begins. With modernization and the advent of travel, our immune systems are constantly being exposed to harmful bacteria, new pathogens, and carcinogens from every direction. The exposure ranges from air-borne, contact and waterborne, follow these steps on how to improve your immune System.
While the solution seems fairly simple, isolation is difficult in a time and age where we are all too exposed.
The human body has both an active and passive immune system. The active immune system is acquired from exposure to pathogens while the passive one is acquired when one is given vaccinations or from breast milk.
Our innate immune system ranges from the barriers of contact such as skin, mucous membranes and integral blood vessels which are all part of the first line of defense.
It also consists of the innate immunity which is conferred to white blood cells produced in the bone marrow and lymphocytes produced in the lymph nodes and other lymphoid organs. Other equally essential parts of the immune system include the normal flora, the pH maintained in certain body regions as well as the normal baseline body temperature.
Any breach in these tightly regulated mechanisms can have a serious impact on the life and health of the affected individual.
Most of the body’s immunity is maintained by systems that are internal to the body. Very little of the human body is expected in terms of the immune response to temperature or pH control. Its central role in the maintenance of immunity revolves around avoiding breaches of these barriers.
The goal is to help or rather boost your Body’s immunity by creating microenvironments that are suitable for optimal body functioning and to produce antibodies.
It is important to note that the body may, in some instances, be overly immune, triggering a series of events otherwise known as autoimmunity.
One example of this immune system disorder is rheumatoid arthritis.
Since we have no role or directly implicated cause of autoimmunity, doctors suggest that a healthy immune system should always be at an expected 100%.
The first line of defense to infection is the white blood cells. It is therefore important to ensure that there is no damage to the immune cells.
This can be caused by bacteria and viruses such as the common cold.
Why We Need To Boost Our Immunity
1. Health Care Is Expensive
Regardless of how much your insurance coverage amounts to, quality healthcare has remained comparatively more expensive over the years.
If there is anything that can be done to prevent sickness, it is logical to pursue it.
2. There Is A Rise In Resistance To The Typical Antibiotics
Due to the rising number of ill prescriptions in the country, more and more people are becoming resistant to common antibiotics.
This, in turn, is giving rise to a new strain of infections which are not only multi-drug resistant, but super resistant to even atypical antibiotics.
It, therefore, serves that some infections are best kept from the body.
3. Preventing Is Always Easier Than Cure
Boosting of immunity consists of simple daily practices that are considerably way more comfortable than pills and injections.
4. Some Drugs Are Immunosuppressant
Steroids and cancer therapy drugs tend to affect the immune system leading to immunosuppression. This causes the patients to be susceptible to infections that would otherwise not affect healthy individuals.
Patients with co-morbid conditions such as diabetes and HIV/AIDS also need to boost their immunity because of the risk of infection with opportunistic infections. Part of a healthy lifestyle for these individuals revolves around ensuring their bodies can handle infection even while on medication.
So How Do You Boost Your Immune System In 5 Simple Steps?
1. Sort the Stress
According to WebMD, up to 90% of doctor visits are related to stress. Of this, only 45% have the actual illness. Science shows an actual correlation between the levels of stress and ails such as headaches, migraines, back pain, and hypertension.
This means that if we found a way to manage the stress, we would cut down medical bills and doctor visits up to 100%. So, how do we do this?
- Toning down on the pressures of life, taking time to exhale and rest.
- Choosing which battles are worth fighting and eliminating life situations that make it hard to survive.
It is worth noting that most of life’s challenges are not an individual’s doing. As such, there should be a deliberate decision on how to maintain one’s inner peace. It has also become socially acceptable to seek out help for mental illness up to, and including, depression.
Dealing with stress will go a long way in ensuring that your immunity remains stable.
One of the well-known ways of eliminating stress is getting a good night’s rest. There truly isn’t anything that a nap won’t cure. It is also key that you eliminate ergonomic hazards such as poor sitting postures, exposure to glare and radiation.
2. Eat A Well-Balanced Diet.
The knowledge of a balanced diet is fairly understood by everyone. The implementation, however, seems to be reserved to a select few. There are a lot of benefits to a balanced diet, paramount of which is that they directly work on the bone marrow aiding with the production of blood cells and the antibodies.
The ⅔ quota of fruits and vegetables is not one to be taken as a suggestion but as a rule.
More and more people are becoming obese as per the results of research by the American diabetes foundation.
This is attributed to the rising preference for fast foods over healthy protein and vitamin-rich diets.
What a bad diet does to your immunity is that it raises the blood sugar levels. With high glucose levels in the blood, one is predisposed to Diabetes Mellitus which inadvertently causes immune suppression. This explains why patients with diabetes are prone to many illnesses.
A diet lacking in vitamins and nutrients also means that an individual is then predisposed to conditions such as pellagra and anemia. While it is true that whole foods are more expensive than fries, in the long run they end up being cheaper, with regards to health.
Regular exercise serves to reduce blood sugars. It also helps with the loss of fat around the body which is unhealthy. Regular exercise raises the body’s metabolic rate ensuring that at all times, toxins and other chemicals are broken down quickly and released from the bloodstream.
Also, during exercise the body releases endorphins. These are hormones that help the body feel better. In essence, they help with stress. This explains why people feel so much better after exercising.
4. Always Protect Your Gut
The alimentary canal, which begins in the mouth and ends in the anal cavity is the epicenter of immunity. The easiest way to detect a breakdown in immunity is by changes in the bowel movements, appetite and weight.
Therefore, it is important that the micro bacteria in the gut are well balanced. In a normal healthy human, the body contains both good and harmful bacteria in the colon. Imbalances causing a rise in harmful bacteria are a common cause of intestinal discomfort.
In a bid to ensure the good bacteria or probiotics are at an optimal level, medical practitioners recommend taking probiotics regularly.
While you can opt for the capsules, healthier alternatives include kombucha, natural yogurt, and wine, which are all great sources of good bacteria for the body.
Vaccination has helped to eradicate diseases which were a cause of morbidity and mortality in the past. One such disease is polio. It still holds that vaccination is a great way to prevent mortality from deadly conditions. There are indeed significant disadvantages to vaccination. However, the overall positive upsides far outweigh the discomfort of taking vaccinations.
It is important to ensure that the vaccination schedule is always adhered to especially when traveling to endemic areas.
Vaccinations to certain viruses such as human papillomavirus are also great ways to prevent the development of cervical cancer.
If you hold doubts on the importance of vaccinations, consider talking to your healthcare provider about them.
Their medical knowledge will go a long way in ensuring you make an informed decision on how to best move forward. Take note of available vaccines and their need for you.
Certain age groups are more susceptible to infections than others. These include women, children and the elderly. Special attention should be given to individuals with diabetes, leukemia and those on steroid medication.
It is important that you are keen on boosting your immunity, especially so if you fall in any of the categories mentioned. All in all, regular exercise, a balanced diet, and an apple a day will serve to keep the doctor away for quite a while.