WHAT IS IMMUNITY?
Immunity is insusceptibility or resistance of a body to infectious agents and external substances that cause the destruction of its cells and tissues. In other words, our ability to cope with a particular infection or virus (including coronavirus) is directly linked to the state of our immune system.
WHICH ORGANS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR STRENGTHENING THE IMMUNE SYSTEM?
Our immune system consists of several organs. Namely:
- Tonsils and adenoids
- The lymph nodes.
- Bone marrow.
- Peyer’s patches in intestine.
They all produce or accumulate our main protective cells – lymphocytes (white blood cells). When an infection gets in the body, the lymphocytes initiate the secretion of antibodies that “kill” this infection. If the immune system is healthy, you have many strong lymphocytes and they can defeat the infection.
Lymphocytes have an excellent “memory”, and they perfectly recall and “know by sight” all the microbes that they once met. Thus, when this microbe attacks your body again, the lymphocytes know how to destroy it, and they will do it quickly and painlessly. The vaccination principle is based on this.
WHAT CAN NEGATIVELY INFLUENCE IMMUNITY?
Various drugs based on interferons are popular now – interferons are substances that affect the regulation of the immune system. It is important to know that such drugs must only be used for serious indications, for example, after surgery, taking heavy antibiotics or when someone has severe immune deficiency due to oncology or hepatitis. In all other cases, uninformed stimulation of immunity with interferon drugs can make your immune system “lazy”, and it will stop operating itself when needed.
Factors, which have direct effect on immunity:
- Passive lifestyle
- Bad sleep
- Grief or bereavement
HOW CAN YOU STRENGTHEN YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM WHILE AT HOME?
There are several easy ways to do this. The key here is to be systematic. Everything that you do irregularly, your body categorizes as “stress”, and stress, in turn, destroys the immune system.
During sleep, the nervous system is restoring itself and your cells are renewing, while toxins are coming out of the body and memories are being sorted and providing space for new information.
DAILY MOVEMENT OR PHYSICAL ACTIVITY.
Take a walk (if you have an opportunity), subscribe to YouTube channels or practice via Skype with friends. Suppose you have a balcony, than you can practice there (if access to the street is restricted during quarantine). Regular physical activity assists you in strengthening the immune system and gives it the capacity to fight infections at age 80 as well as at 40 or 20. Sports can be of use to reduce stress levels and speed up metabolism. The most important point here is a measure (extent), as many studies suggest that excessive physical activity has a harmful effect on the immune system and immune reaction.
EAT FRUITS AND VEGETABLES.
My main principle is the combination of colors – in any meal, your plate should contain at least THREE colors. Each color adds vitamins and phytonutrients to your diet to help your body maintain immune defenses against viruses.
It is important not to overdo it with fruits, because they contain a lot of sugar – give preference to fruits or berries rich in vitamin C (for example, my favorite blackcurrant tea steamed with boiling water). Carotenes, from which vitamins A and E are synthesized, provide the best protection for thymus cells. The higher their concentration, the more successfully this organ is able to fight microorganisms.
The spleen also produces antibodies and must be protected from harmful substances by antioxidants such as vitamins A and E. You can find provitamin A in all orange vegetables and fruits (carrots, pumpkin, sweet potatoes, apricots, red and orange peppers), spinach, green peas and rosehip berries. In addition, you can experiment with herbs and spices, such as paprika, cilantro, marjoram, parsley and chili. For a daily dose of vitamin E, it is enough to add 2 tbsp. of olive oil in a salad.
It may seem like a nothing, but when you drink little, the body and brain cannot function properly, which is very crucial during a pandemic.
How do you support your immune system? Think to yourself, what else could you do today to support your immune system?