A strong immune system is critical especially during a time like now. It reduces chances of catching those seasonal bugs as well as common colds. But most importantly gives your body a chance to fight off quick spreading viruses. Being sick and having a strong immune system will help aid in the recovery process and have you better in no time. Understanding what a strong immune system is as well as how to obtain such is important.
How your Immune System Works
Any substances that are unfamiliar to the body that try and enter can activate the immune system. These are known as antigens. Antigens allow for an immune response fungus, viruses, and bacteria. We often refer to the immune system as one solitary unit. But it is actually made up of two separate ones.
The first subsystem is the innate immune system. This system offers a general defense against harmful substances that enter the body. Digestion tract and or skin are two entry points for this type of defense. The second subsystem is the adaptive immune system. If the body encounters an antigen it has never seen before, it doesn’t know how to respond. A prime example of this is the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Once this happens your body creates a new antigen to fight off the virus and also keeps that antigen to help fight off or keep the virus away in the future.
However, there are sometimes where your body cannot figure out a way to fight off an unknown substance and may sometimes start attacking elsewhere as a response. Most of the time when this is happening autoimmune disease is present. In Harvard health publications, Harvard medical students did a study on many things you can do to boost immunity. These include eating a lot of fruits and vegetables, and getting enough sleep. Regular exercise is helpful as well and regular physical activity may be one of the easiest to maintain.
What does Exercising do for your Immune System?
Exercise is beneficial to immune system function in many ways. One is that it helps lower white blood cell count. High white blood cell count is associated with inflammation. Another risk of too many white blood cells is coronary heart disease.
Engaging in regular exercise also helps protect the immune system from aging. This may be most important in elderly. Making exercising later in life very important as it can prevent diseases as well as infections in the future.
According to Exercise and Sports Sciences -”regular moderate exercise can help reduce the risk of respiratory infection”. It also reduces inflammation within the respiratory tract. This helps reduce the symptoms of upper respiratory tract infections.
Exercise also has a positive effect on long lasting inflammation in the body. This can occur due to factors such as poor diet or smoking. It also puts clients at greater risk of developing major health conditions. These include cancer and diabetes. Other researchers have found that obesity impairs immune function. This is due in part to obesity’s connection with chronic inflammation. Regular exercise helps clients maintain a healthy weight. Along with that maintaining a good body weight also involves healthy dieting which is also mentioned as a way to help increase your body's immune function.
What type of physical activity can improve your body’s ability to fend off infection and other foreign invaders? Most would think high intensities exercises are the only way but any type of moderate exercising can get the job done.
Examples of that include brisk walking or other forms of aerobic exercise. Training at the gym can be considered moderate-intensity exercise as well. The biggest thing is staying consistent which may include exercising every other day or 5-6 times a week for regular routine gym goers.
Including others in your workout is also beneficial as social support helps lower inflammation during exercising or Some studies have also included social support with a reduced risk of some life-threatening conditions.
One of the easiest ways to do so is including your kids in your daily routine of exercising. They are the easiest support to maintain because they want to be involved and curiosity will be present. Enjoying the good outdoors which has been found to benefit mental health stability or finding a well maintained gym would also be beneficial in your quest to find some consistency during pandemics.
All in all, finding a way to stay active during a pandemic can benefit you more than you think. There have been many studies done on immune function and maintaining a strong one could help prevent or lessen effects of any virus or bacteria your body may encounter. Involving others and maintaining a healthy diet can help you fight off this virus and make for an easier transition to normal.