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STUDIO NEWS - A Healthy Immune System

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Exercise & the Immune System
The best way to strengthen your immune system is to choose a healthy lifestyle. That is the single best step you can take toward naturally keeping your immune system working properly. Every part of your body, including your immune system, functions better when protected from environmental assaults & bolstered by healthy-living strategies such as: 1. Don’t smoke, 2. Eat a diet high in fruits & vegetables, 3. Exercise regularly, 4. Maintain a healthy weight, 5. If you drink alcohol, drink only in moderation, 6. Get adequate sleep, 7. Take steps to avoid infection, 8. Try to minimize stress, &  8. Keep current with all recommended vaccines.(health.harvard.edu)
So how does exercise help build your immune system?  A study published in the Journal of Sport and Health Science states that people typically have only a small number of immune cells circulating around the body. Those cells prefer to hang out in lymphoid tissues & organs like the spleen, where your body kills viruses, bacteria & other microorganisms that cause disease.
Because exercise increases blood & lymph flow as your muscles contract, it also increases the circulation of immune cells. Specifically, exercise helps to recruit highly specialized immune cells that find pathogens & wipe them out.
While you do get an immediate response from your immune system when you exercise, that will eventually go away – unless you keep working out consistently. It all adds up as time goes on. Think of it this way, if you spend one hour on one day cleaning your house, at the end of the hour the house will look presentable on that day. But when you spend one hour each day cleaning your house, the house will consistently look presentable.
Another benefit of exercise is that it decreases inflammation in the body, which in turn can also improve immunity.  Some research from a 2004 study in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society linked decreased levels of inflammatory markers to those that exercise more often & have higher levels of fitness. That goes hand-in-hand with immunity. When immune cells try to function with inflammation, it puts the immune system in a chronically inflamed state too, which makes it harder to fight infection. To cut down in inflammation, increase the activity level.
It’s not rocket science, just common sense that tells you to keep moving to contribute to a healthy lifestyle, building the immune system & making it easier to fight infection & live disease free.

 

 


Moderate Alcohol Use?
Speaking of moderate alcohol use, this article discusses the risks and benefits. Not surprisingly, a healthy diet & regular exercise are more highly recommended for their health benefits.

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