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Your immune system does an amazing job of protecting you and defending you against microorganisms that cause you to get sick. However, sometimes successful is able to invade and you get sick. What can you do to boost your immune system and reduce your risk of getting sick? Let’s look at some of the things that have the potential to improve your immune system.
#1 Live a Healthy Lifestyle
The first line of defense that you have at your disposal is living a healthy lifestyle. Your immune system will do better overall with a healthy lifestyle backing it.
- Eat a diet high in fruits and vegetables, low in saturated fat, and including whole grains
- Don’t smoke
- Exercise regularly
- Control your blood pressure
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Get adequate sleep
- Drink only in moderation
- Get regular medical screenings
- Wash hands often
The immune system needs good nourishment if it is to operate optimally. Scientists acknowledge that people who live are malnourished are at a higher risk of developing infectious diseases. There are still some newer studies looking at the direct link between the immune system and nutrition.
There is some evidence that micronutrient deficiencies (selenium, zinc, copper, iron, folic acid, Vitamins A, B, C, & E) alter an animal’s immune response. The research on the how these immune changes affect the animal’s health is not as clear. Research indicates you should ensure you have the following micronutrients in your diet at adequate levels.
- Zinc – A trace element essential for cells of the immune system, and zinc deficiency affects the ability of T cells and other immune cells to function properly.
- Selenium – Low selenium levels increase the risk of breast, bladder, colon, lung, rectum, and prostate cancers.
- Vitamin A –Plays a role in infection and maintaining mucosal surfaces by influencing some subcategories of T cells, B cells and cytokines. A deficiency is linked to impaired immunity and an increase in the risk of developing infectious disease.
- Vitamin B2 – Enhances resistance to bacterial infections.
- Vitamin B6 – A deficiency can depress the immune response, to mature various types of T and B cells.
- Vitamin C – Works with other micronutrients rather than providing benefits alone.
- Vitamin D – Signals an antimicrobial response to the bacterium that causes tuberculosis, and further research is needed to see if it has the same affect on other diseases.
- Vitamin E– Increases antibody responses to hepatitis B and tetanus after vaccination.
There has been a direct link between stress and a variety of conditions including hives, stomach upset, and even heart disease. The relationship between stress and immune function is being currently studied. This is a difficult type of study to conduct. However most medical practitioners will agree that stress can directly affect the immune system in a negative way.
#4 Aging and Your Immune System
Research confirms that as we age our immune system becomes less effective, which leads to more inflammatory diseases, and more cancer. Many research studies confirm that the elderly are far more likely to contract infectious diseases including respiratory infections, influenza, and pneumonia. Some scientific studies have observed that this increased risk is related to the production of fewer T cells, which fight off infection. The thymus function production begins to decline at age one. In addition, the body’s production of HGH (human growth hormone) decreases significantly after the age of 20.
University of Arkansas researchers are looking at why the immune system weakens with age. They studied cell death in mice. They conducted an experiment to compare the life span of memory T lymphocytes in older mice with those of younger mice and what they found is that the lymphocytes in older mice die sooner. This suggests that as the lymphocytes die off, the elderly immune system loses its memory for the microbes it is intended to fight and fails to recognize the microbes when they reappear. The body thus becomes less able to mount a vigorous immune response.
Supplements That Can Help Your Immune System
- HGH supplements – An HGH supplement will help the body to replenish its natural supply of HGH and thus will lead to an increase in the immune system. Scientific studies have confirmed the many benefits of HGH Find out more about HGH. It is safe to use and is available without prescription. HGH injections require a doctor’s prescription.
- Astragalus membranes – Is derived from the plant’s root and is marketed as an immune system stimulant. Caution should be used as there are numerous side effects.
- Echinacea – Has long been marketed as an immune stimulant.
- Garlic – Has long been recognized as having infection fighting qualities. Research has shown garlic can work against viruses, fungi, and bacteria.
- Ginseng – Is said to boost the immune system, but there is insufficient studies to confirm.