The immune system is the body’s defense mechanism. It forms the second line of defense, after physical barriers like the skin and the mucous membranes. It is located throughout the body and includes the thymus gland, the spleen, bone marrow and a vast network of lymph nodes. It is made up of many cells, proteins, tissues and organs. The main function of the immune system is to prevent and fight infection. A good immune system is necessary for proper functioning of the body. A weakened immune system can cause symptoms like frequent sickness, allergies, fatigue, digestive issues, delayed growth and slow development.
A low immune function can be due to emotional stress, sleep deprivation, vitamin deficiencies, lack of physical exercise, over exposure to harmful ultraviolet (UV) sunrays, excessive use of antibiotics, exposure to environmental toxins, poor dietary habits and inadequate hygiene. Boosting the immune system is possible through lifestyle changes and some simple home remedies.
Garlic fights against bacterial and viral infections and anti-inflammatory activity. It has a protective action against heart diseases and high level cholesterol. A small piece of garlic can be added daily in your diet to increase your immunity and maintain perfect health condition.
Turmeric has antioxidants that are important for the immune system. Traditionally it has been used as an antibiotic. Turmeric contains Vitamin B6 and many minerals such as potassium, manganese and iron. It plays an important role in the functioning of different organ systems. It also contains curcumin which has antioxidant action. Hot milk mixed with 1 tsp of turmeric daily is beneficial. It should be added in your daily meals to boost immunity.
Drinking green tea boosts immunity. Several compounds in green tea help increase “regulatory T cells” in the body. These cells play a key role in immune function. The antioxidants in green tea protects the body from damage. 2 to 3 cups of green tea daily are recommended daily for good results.
Stress affects every person at some point in our lives. The hallmarks of stress are headaches, pounding chest pains, uneasiness and an overall tense feeling. In the presence of stress, the immune system has to work harder to defend the body against threats to health. Stress can suppress the immune system to such a point that it is severely compromised.
Our immune system cannot function well if our lifestyle is sedentary. Regular exercise can help the function of neutrophils. These cells can help kill disease causing germs that can negatively affect health.
While sleeping, the cells in the blood fight infections and keep them at bay. So lack of sleep and fatigue can leave you vulnerable to infection.
It is important to eat a well-balanced assortment of foods including fruits, vegetables and whole grain sources. These foods support the immune system by providing crucial vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals and antioxidants. Fatty junk foods should be avoided. Fats, especially polyunsaturated fats, tend to suppress the immune system. Sugar can inhibit phagocytosis, the process by which white blood cells work to destroy viruses and bacteria.
You may also view the list of other natural immunity boosting foods by Dabur Chyawanprash. Visit our immunity blog to know more.
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