What is the immune system?

The immune system is a system in our body that works to help protect us day-to-day. It involves all parts of the body and is made up of a network of cells and organs that help to defend the body against attacks by foreign invaders such as viruses.

When your immune system is functioning properly, your body will be better equipped to can fight off infections by agents like bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites. When it is not working right, you can find yourself getting sick more often, for example catching more colds than you otherwise would.

What is the importance of a healthy immune system?

Having a healthy immune system is important because we are exposed to foreign bodies all the time; whether it’s touching a dirty subway pole, someone sneezing near you or consuming a unwashed salad in a restaurant. Really anytime we are out and about, at home or work and interacting with others, there is the chance that we are going to come across some germs.

However, that doesn’t mean we should panic! Our immune system does a great job of looking after us. It acts as a first line of defense against these foreign bodies. Then if, for example, a bacteria does manage to pass into our blood, the immune system will produce white blood cells to destroy the bacteria. You can watch a white blood cell chasing a bacteria here.

How to boost IT

There are a few different things that reportedly help boost your immune system. These include:

Taking healthy exercise –  You will find that when you are exercising and staying active, you are going to feel better inside and out. Doing a little bit is going to go a long way and make you feel your best because you are keeping active and keeping your blood pumping.

Eat fruits and vegetables – So the saying goes ‘An apple a day keeps the doctor away.’ I bet you’ve heard it many times. Eating a healthy, balanced diet with plenty of fruits a vegetables is often recommended. Try to cut back on the junk food that you eat. The more of this that you let into your body will mean that the less effective your body will be. You want to keep yourself on a good diet that is full of fruits and vegetables so that you can build up a good immune system. You also want to have proteins and carbohydrates added to your diet as well. This will help to keep your body filled with energy to maintain a healthier lifestyle. If you don’t think you are eating enough fruit and veg you might consider taking a multivitamin.

Avoid Smoking and consuming too much alcohol – This probably won’t come as a surprise but it’s worth considering.

Get enough sleep – Getting enough sleep is also recommended if you are trying to boost your immune system.

Try to reduce your stress – As well as being quite emotionally taxing, stress does also have negative effects on the physical body too. Avoiding stress can seem like an impossible task but finding good coping mechanisms that work for you can be a great starting point. Perhaps you find cooking a nice meal in the evenings is a great way to unwind? Or maybe meditation or a good exercise session is more up your alley? Reiki can also be a great way to help you calm and relax your body and mind – if you want to learn more about taking a Reiki course click here.

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