8 Science-Based Ways to Boost Your Immune System

8 Science-Based Ways to Boost Your Immune System
Your immune system is your main line of defense against disease, so you better keep it in top shape. Especially now that novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is raging in country.

You are born with an immune system. Everyone's immune system is a little different, but there are things you can do to boost your immune system. Maintaining a healthy immune system requires you to take care of your body.

How exactly does immune system work?

Your immune system actually consists of a "layered defense" that includes your skin, physical barriers such as cilia (cilia-like structures), and specialized cells that recognize and attack foreign substances such as viruses and bacteria.

Some of these immune cells are non-specific and destroy everything that is found on a foreign body. “Other cells produce antibodies that recognize and attack protein markers (called antigens) on surface of bacteria.

Your immune system is also able to recognize pathogens you've been exposed to and respond quickly to them. That's why we don't usually get sick after coming into contact with germs we've encountered before.

8 Science-Based Ways to Boost Your Immune System
How to strengthen immune system

There are several scientifically proven ways to boost immune system, most of which are recommended for general health:

1. Control your alcohol consumption.

High alcohol consumption has been proven to suppress immune function. In addition, alcohol can cause dehydration, and hydration is important to protect against disease. When you are dehydrated, your cells cannot function properly, leaving you open to disease. If you don't want to stop drinking completely, sip moderately. This means up to one serving per day for women and two servings per day for men.

8 Science-Based Ways to Boost Your Immune System
2. Reduce stress

Anything you worry about may seem harmless when you deal with it, but research shows that stress can damage or suppress immune system, making us more susceptible to infections. In particular, studies have shown that stress triggers release of hormone cortisol, which in turn raises cortisol levels. Inflammation is precursor to many diseases in body. Chronic stress can also impair ability of white blood cells to fight infections, making you more susceptible to disease.

3. Eat more fruits and vegetables

Fruits and vegetables help body obtain antioxidants to fight oxidative stress, including infections in the body.

Choose a lot: leafy greens, bell peppers, citrus fruits, sweet potatoes, and berries.

8 Science-Based Ways to Boost Your Immune System
4. Vitamin D supplement

Vitamin D plays an important role in maintaining immune system by helping body produce antibodies to fight disease.

Active vitamin D travels to various parts of your body, including bones, intestines, colon, brain, and immune cells, where it binds to receptors on those cells, eventually activating them.

Most people don't get enough vitamin D. Your body mainly makes vitamin D from sun's ultraviolet rays (it's called sunshine vitamin for a reason!), but you can also get it yourself. Foods rich in vitamin D to increase your intake include oily fish and seafood, mushrooms, eggs (do not skip yolks). doctor. He or she may do a blood test to determine the correct dose.

8 Science-Based Ways to Boost Your Immune System
5. Give preference to sleep

Drowsiness is key. Getting enough sleep helps our body recover from everyday stressors - physical and mental - and promotes better functioning of our immune system.

When you don't get enough sleep, your body may produce fewer protective proteins called cytokines, which your immune response needs more of when it's under stress to fight off infection or inflammation.

How much sleep are we talking about? The National Sleep Foundation states that adults under the age of 64 should get seven to nine hours of sleep a night, and those 65 and older should get seven to eight hours of sleep.

8 Science-Based Ways to Boost Your Immune System
6. Wash your hands often

Regular handwashing will help prevent viruses and bacteria from getting into your eyes, nose, and mouth and boost your immune system. This reduces variety and number of microbes we are exposed to and prevents our immune system from being overwhelmed.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) strongly recommends washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

7. Regular exercise

Physical activity helps protect your lungs and airways from pathogens. This can minimize your chances of catching a cold, flu, or other illness. Exercise also increases antibodies and white blood cells, spreading them more widely throughout body, where they can better detect disease than when you're not moving.

8 Science-Based Ways to Boost Your Immune System
8. Finally, if you haven't quit smoking yet, do it

You already know that smoking is bad for your health in many ways, but it can also wreak havoc on your immune system and cause "direct damage".

For example, smoking leads to immobilization of cilia - hair-like structures in airways that help "cleanse" bacteria. These cilia are first line of defense against respiratory infections. When bacteria are immobilized, they have "easier access" to your lungs. Coughing and sneezing.

Bottom line: Adopting certain healthy habits can boost your immune system.

Of course, you can do everything right and still get sick. But if you do your best to boost your immune system now, it means your body will be more prepared to deal with any problems you may have later.