Your immune system is a complex, codependent structure of white blood cells, antibodies, complex proteins, networks, and organs. Some parts of the system act as literal barriers, preventing viruses and bacteria from reaching organs like your brain, while others hunt and remove invaders from your body.
Though your immune system is effective against many disease-causing germs and viruses, it requires time to familiarize itself with the enemy. In many scenarios, it must be able to recognize an illness-causing pathogen as a danger before it can be removed from your body. This is typically only possible once you’ve developed specific antibodies after having been sick. Here are some important words to know when understanding how your immune system works.
When an antibody recognizes the antigen of an invading pathogen, it binds itself to it tightly. Once attached it acts as a beacon, signaling other elements of the immune system to attack the invader.
It’s important to know that a strong immune system will not prevent you from contracting COVID-19.
However, developing a strong immune system while you’re healthy can sustain your body as it familiarizes itself with the new virus in the event you get sick. The stronger your immune system, the quicker it may be to battle the virus and/or recover. Taking steps now to boost your immune health can also help you fight other common bugs such as cold or flu viruses.
More research is necessary, but it’s believed that quality exercise and activity, nutrition, emotional and psychological wellbeing, and lifestyle choices can benefit your immune system. Here are a few tips to help you feel as healthy as possible.
Although prolonged intense exercise can suppress your immune system, moderate exercise can give it a boost.
Studies indicate that even a single session of moderate exercise can boost the effectiveness of vaccines in people with compromised immune systems.
What’s more, regular, moderate exercise may reduce inflammation and help your immune cells regenerate regularly.
Examples of moderate exercise include yoga, steady bicycling, jogging, swimming, and light hiking. Most people should aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week
Getting adequate rest may strengthen your natural immunity. Also, you may sleep more when sick to allow your immune system to better fight the illness.
The CDC and American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends 7 or more hours of sleep for adults, 8-10 hours for teens, 9-12 hours for school age children, 10-13 hours for preschoolers (including naps), and 11-14 hours for toddlers (including naps) in a 24-hour period.).
If you’re having trouble sleeping, try limiting screen time for an hour before bed, as the blue light emitted from your phone, TV, and computer may disrupt your circadian rhythm, or your body’s natural wake-sleep cycle.
Other sleep tips include sleeping in a completely dark room or using a sleep mask, going to bed at the same time every night, and exercising regularly
Fermented foods are rich in beneficial bacteria called probiotics, which populate your digestive tract (1). These foods include yogurt, sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir, and natto.
Research suggests that a flourishing network of gut bacteria can help your immune cells differentiate between normal, healthy cells and harmful invader organisms (2).
In a 3-month study in 126 children, those who drank just 2.4 ounces (70 mL) of fermented milk daily had about 20% fewer childhood infectious diseases, compared with a control group (3).
At PH Naturals, we have put together a unique combination of these essential vitamins and minerals that have been shown to keep your body healthy.
While you may not be able to completely avoid getting sick, a strong and healthy immune system can be your first line of defense. Focusing on your immune health can also help take the edge off your symptoms if you do get sick.