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Boosting Your Immune System: How to Improve Your Body’s Natural Defenses

Your immune system is a network of processes protecting your body from disease. The immune system acts against anything harmful, from viruses and bacteria to parasites, cancerous cells and even foreign bodies like splinters. There are many components that make up your immune system, including your skin’s biome, your gut flora, organs like the spleen, the lymphatic system and bone marrow, and protective cells like the lymphocytes, neutrophils and macrophages.

When your immune system doesn’t function properly, you are more susceptible to an array of diseases, both acute and chronic, some of them quite dangerous and even potentially life-threatening. But this is not the only type of malfunction the immune system can suffer. Autoimmune disorders, resulting from an overactive immune system, are similarly problematic, as they attack the body’s healthy tissues, causing illness. This abnormal response is behind conditions such as Hashimoto’s disease, Diabetes Type 1, and Lupus.

For these reasons, it’s important to keep your immune system optimally in order to lead a healthy life. However, you may be unsure where to begin. There’s still a lot that scientists don’t know about the immune system, but there are some lifestyle changes that have been shown to yield positive results.

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Quit smoking

You are likely already aware that smoking is purported to have several detrimental effects on human health. But did you know that it can also inhibit normal immune function? Smoking makes your body less adept at fighting off disease, so if you’re a smoker yourself, consider quitting or gradually reducing your nicotine intake. Many body parts are impacted by smoking. For example, chain-smokers are more likely to develop arthritis. Your vision, lungs, digestive system and even the appearance of your skin can suffer. Some of this damage is reversible while others are not, so if you’re looking to stop, there’s no moment like the present.

Get enough sleep

If you’re habitually catching colds, notice scratches and bruises take a long time to heal or get frequent skin infections, it may be due to an improper sleep schedule. If you’re frequently missing out on sleep hours, you’re not only making yourself fatigued and sleep-deprived, but you’re also working against your own immune system. Improper sleep weakens your defenses in the face of pathogens and delays your recovery period if you happen to get ill. When you don’t get sufficient shuteye, you’re decreasing the production of protective cytokines and antibodies that protect your system. Moreover, the lack of sleep has also been associated with disorders that harm immunity, like diabetes, heart problems and obesity. So make sure you go to bed at a reasonable hour and get that much-needed rest.

Adopt a healthy diet

“You are what you eat” is a true statement when it comes to your immune system. When your diet lacks healthy vitamins and minerals, your immunity also takes a hit. That’s why it’s important to develop healthy dietary patterns and habits. Some of the essential nutrients your body requires to function properly are vitamins D, C and E, iron, zinc and amino acids. In order to get all these vital substances, you should consume a variety of fruits, vegetables and beans. Get your fiber from whole grains, and eliminate refined sugars and excess fats. Probiotic foods, such as yogurt, fermented veggies, kombucha, miso and kimchi, are also good options. They contain active cultures of helpful bacteria that help your body boost its immune defenses.

Another essential aspect you should keep in mind is to use supplements. It can often be difficult to have a diet that is so perfectly balanced to offer you optimal levels of all the beneficial nutrients you need. If you’re looking for a well-known nutritional agent to help, you should try Panax Extract, a type of Korean ginseng. Known for centuries as a traditional remedy for many illnesses, ginseng is a widely popular superfood trusted for its beneficial effects on health. Owing to its high concentration of vitamins, including vitamins C, K, E, calcium, folate, potassium and magnesium, it has a positive effect on people suffering from neurological illnesses, as well as helping improve fatigue and reduce blood sugar levels. Ginseng is a potent antioxidant with many anti-inflammatory properties, making it effective in immunity-boosting and an anti-aging product. Easy to use, you can just add a few drops to water or your beverage of choice. Its pleasant taste lends itself well to a number of drinks so that you can enjoy the many health benefits together with your favorite refreshment.

Start exercising

Movement is life, and when you keep your body moving and get regular exercise, you improve your health and general well-being. To get the most out of a workout routine, you should aim to exercise for roughly one hour each day. If that’s not feasible for you, try to work out as often as your schedule allows it. When you exercise, it’s not only your limbs that move but also your immune cells. This process helps these helpful cells circulate through your bloodstream more easily. This makes your body more resistant to infections as immune activity increases and enhances the defense mechanisms.

Another benefit of regular exercising is the slowing down of stress hormone releases. High levels of stress over a long period of time are associated with impaired immune function due to the release of cortisol. While this hormone is beneficial during short-term situations, it acts as a compromising force and damages the immune system if its levels become chronically elevated. Working out reduces stress hormones and responses and helps improve mood so that you are less likely to get stressed altogether.

Another well-known advantage of exercising is reducing chronic inflammation, a known cause of illness. Mid-intensity exercise reduces your risk of abnormal immune responses in the face of inflammatory reactions, guaranteeing that you won’t get sick.

Taking care of your immune system is no easy business. You need to take care of many aspects to ensure your body gets the best protection out there. It may seem like a chore almost if you’re not used to it, but developing healthy habits will only work in your favor, and you’ll notice that your general welfare and fitness improve in no time.

Jeff Campbell