By Larisa Belote
There is no time like the present to strengthen your immune system. With the fall comes the Flu, more strains of Viruses and Bacteria. The human body has a powerful immune system that fights against ALL viruses, flu and bacteria. The important factor to consider is to have a strong immune system so our body can fight and protect us from harm. There are multiple things you can do to make sure that your body is in top shape.
So how do we make sure we have a strong immune system?
1) Don’t Panic! Being fearful and in panic may not necessarily get you infected, but it can suppress the agents in your body responsible for boosting your immune system. A brain study (Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics. Vol 72, p 253) carried out by the UK, and Italian researchers linked negative emotions with lowered immunity. In the study, when the elderly were depressed or in a state of fear, they had lower levels of lymphocytes and T-cells (white blood cells that help fight viruses).
2) Make Your Body a Bad Host to Protect Yourself from Viruses and Bacteria. This is the first step to take towards protecting yourself. Usually, viruses need a good host or an environment to grow and multiply, thereby causing more harm to your body. Creating an unconducive environment would stop the growth of the virus until they eventually die. You can become a good host by consuming too much sugar, being continually stressed, and getting little sleep.
Becoming a “bad host” is your mission. You can become a bad host by:
a) Going outside often and exposing your body to a moderate amount of sunlight which would help energize your T-cells. Sunlight is also a great source of vitamin D as it synthesizes in the skin after moderate exposure to UVB.
b) Staying physically active. Exercise is essential, but doesn’t necessarily mean you have to hit the gym or take a run. The idea is to make your body physically active for a good amount of time. An epidemiological study reveals that a physically active lifestyle reduces the chances of communicable and non-communicable diseases such as bacterial infections, viral infections, and cancer.
c) Consuming more Kimchi (a local Asian delicacy). It was found that consumption of kimchi helped people during the 2003 with severe acute respiratory (SARS) outbreak which hit many parts of the world, including Hong Kong and mainland China, only a few people in Korea were infected.
This was attributed to the antiviral component of the Kimchi, although, many argued it. However, in a study (Effects of heat-killed Lactobacillus Plantarum against influenza viruses in mice); the results showed that lactic acid bacteria and fermentation metabolites present on Kimchi prevents the growth of influenza virus.
d) Consume foods & supplements rich in Zinc, Echinacea, vitamins C & D. These nutrients are effective in preventing and treating the common cold, hence, suitable for dealing with the respiratory problems. The key player is vitamin D, which offers a lot of health benefits. Some benefits include enhancing macrophages, monocytes, pathogens; boosting the immune system, and protecting the body against respiratory infections.
e) Fast from time to time. Fasting is beneficial to human health as it serves different purposes, including protecting the body against some types of viruses. Fasting stimulates the immune system that would fight bacteria and viruses.
Intermittent fasting for about 17 hours can help your immune system fight against both bacterial and viral infections. Don’t fast longer than 17 hours as it would only weaken your body and suppress your immune system.
The immune system that fights viral infections does not thrive when glucose levels are down for a longer period. But the immune system that fights bacterial infections can go a long time without food.
f) Get at least 7 hours of sleep. Sleeping is an important part of human life as it helps you reduce your stress levels and boost your T-cells functions. Sleep serves as the foundation for all points mentioned above. This means that even though you eat a lot of Kimchi and often fast, if you lack at least 7 hours of good sleep, it will lower your immune system.
Larisa Belote, Health Practitioner, Certified Detox Specialist, and founder of Step by Step Wellness is dedicated to keeping up with the latest research and creating individualized programs that fit best with client’s needs. She specializes in Gut Imbalances, Cellular Detox and Fasting/Diet Variation techniques. Call/Txt 732.996.6963 or email: email@example.com to set up a free 20 min consultation.