Immune System is a biological system that helps protect against external harm. Every Organism has a certain kind of immune system which let them fight against harmful invaders.
Similarly, humans have an inbuilt immune system which gives them the strength to fight against numerous pathogens and prevent harmful diseases. A good immune system is always required for a healthy body.
The immune system varies among each individual. Some have a strong immune system, some have weak immune systems. The one who has a stronger immune system can fight external disease-causing pathogens better compare to one having a weak immune system.
It also varies during different phases of life, like during the weak health condition the immune system stays weak, it is also got impacted by the kind of medication we take.
In general terms, the immune system becomes stronger on exposure to different pathogens. Our body produces antibodies to fight these pathogens. Once the body produces an antibody, it keeps a copy so that if the same antigen appears again, the body can deal with it more quickly.
In Humans, there are three types of immunities:
- Innate – > Innate Immunity is something a child gets from his/her birth. Their Immunity attack invaders from birth
- Adaptive – We can term it acquired immunity as well because a person acquires the immunity by fighting pathogens that develops as they go through life.
- Passive >> Passive immunity is one which we receive from another person.
How Immune System Work?
Our body is built in such a way that it has multiple components which compose the immune system.
- The lymphatic system: It is similar to the blood circulatory system; it forms a network similar to the blood vessel. It carries a fluid called LYMPH. Lymph carries an immune-related cell in the area that needs them. Lymph System includes Lymph vessels & lymph organs including lymph nodes, tonsils, thymus, spleen, and bone marrow. Lymphocyte [type of white blood cells] travels to lymph node via lymph vessel and destroy the harmful substance there.
- Spleen: It is present on the left side of the body under the ribs and above the stomach. Spleen is one of the largest lymphatic organs that filters and stores blood. It produces white blood cells that fight infection or disease.
- Thymus: It is one of the Lymphatic organs which matures off a specific type of white blood cells to fight the foreign organism. It is located in the upper chest beneath the breast bone.
- Tonsils and adenoids: Tonsil is present in the back of the mouth and on the upper side of the throat. They are our body’s first line of defense against foreign invaders because they trap pathogens from the food you eat and the air you breathe.
- Bone marrow: Bone marrow is present in the center of bones, they are soft, spongy, gelatinous tissue. They are of two types of which Red marrow becomes White blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets.
- Appendix: They are lymphoid tissue that destroys micro-organism before it breaches the intestine wall during absorption.
Why Strong Immune system is important?
As we know Immunity is the first line of defense against harmful bacteria and micro-organisms. The immune system plays a vital role in preventing harmful diseases. This is the reason a person with weak immunity gets sick easily compared to one who has strong immunity. So, for a healthy body, strong immunity is very important.
A strong Immune system makes our body cable of fighting germs. Stronger the immune system, the better its capability to recognize harmful pathogens and act on them.
How to Improve Immunity?
Adapting a healthy habit builds better immunity. Below are a few ways in which you can build stronger immunity.
Exercise & Walk Regularly:
Exercise and regular walking impact the circulatory system of the body. The heart pumps blood in the whole body faster and improves the circulatory system. The white blood cell reaches every part of the body and helps in fighting germs. This is the reason people experts say Exercise regularly to stay fit.
Researchers are not exactly sure how exercise can help strengthen the immune system but many Studies show that people who do exercise regularly have better-functioning white blood cells Exercise is associated with the release of natural hormone Endorphins which promotes relaxation and well-being. It helps in getting destressed and better sleep, which in turn, improves immunity.
There is no substitute for a healthy diet to build a stronger immune system. The proper amount of nutrients is very important for a diet plan as it leads to a healthy body and if we follow w unhealthy diet plan it leads to obesity or malnutrition which will reduce the immune capability of the body and in turn attract diseases.
Doctors always advise taking a meal with the optimum quantity of nutrients. Also, many fruits help in boosting immunity which one can consume as a part of a healthy diet. In the studies, it was found that a diet rich in antioxidant vitamins boosts resistance to the pathogens.
Getting Plenty of Sleep
You might have experienced insomnia or less numbness of sleep hours cause you fatigue and makes you the tired whole day. Not only this if you keep sleeping for fewer number hours regularly it will make you prone to several diseases as better sleep is directly proportional to strong immunity.
Poor sleep could be the reason for diabetes and obesity. Proper sleep act as an oxidant as it reduces oxidative stress. Better sleep gives a proper amount of relaxation to the body by reducing the whole day’s stress.
Meditation, Practice Stress Management
Stress is the biggest concern for many people, Stress is the main cause that invites major diseases. It has been found that people who work on stress management are more fit compared to one who doesn’t bother about it.
One cannot avoid stress in day-to-day life but getting relief is very important. In studies, it was found that Stress induces a release of hormone-like cortisol and adrenaline which impacts badly on the body. Release of these hormone in the body impacts the immune system.
Stress is linked to diabetes, hypertension, and heart diseases. It also impacts of poor functioning of blood cells.
Avoid Excess Alcohol
It was known that proper amount of alcohol is good for health like lowering heart diseases but its excessive consumption has an adverse effect on the health. It inhibits the functioning of white blood cells hence impacting on immune system.
Food that helps building better immunity
Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, and Indian Gooseberry are rich sources of Vitamin C and it is very well known that consumption of Citrus fruit boosts improves immunity. This is the reason you have heard that vitamin C help in fighting cold and flu.
As per this article from NCBI https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5707683, Vitamin C stimulates neutrophil migration to the site of infection, enhances phagocytosis and oxidant generation, and microbial killing.
It was found that garlic keeps the body warm, and consumption of garlic in winters prevents the cold and FLU. Garlic contains a compound that helps the immune system fight germs. This compound, ALLICIN contains Sulfur which gives it a distinctive smell and it boosts some types of White blood cells in fighting germs.
Turmeric is being used as a medicine since ancient times to treat colds, wounds, and infections. In studies, it was found that turmeric contains the compound curcumin, which has an anti-inflammatory benefit. It also acts as a strong antioxidant. Drinking turmeric milk in winter improves the immune system and helps fight winter cold and flu.
The green tea is known for its antioxidant properties. They are a natural anti-stress agent, and a rich source of vitamin C. Its anti-oxidant property prevents the oxidative damage of the body cells.
Green tea has anti-microbial properties which inhibit the growth of bacteria and viruses. They are rich in polyphenol compounds also referred to as flavanols. They include -epicatechin, -epigallocatechin, -epicatechin-3-gallate, and -epigallocatechin-3-gallate(EGCG). These compounds improve the immune system of our body.
Blueberries, one of the immune-boosting superfoods contain a type of antioxidant called flavonoids that help reduce damage to the body cells and boost our immune system. Since they are a rich source of vitamins C, they help fight germs.
Olive oil not only plays an important role in reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease but also has immune-boosting properties. Besides the monounsaturated fats content, they also contain phenolic compounds that have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and immunomodulatory properties.
For ages, ginger has had medical benefits. Tea lovers, prefer “adrak wali chai” in winters to keep away from cold and flues. Ginger has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties which help in improving the body’s immune system.