Small tricks that can effectively support our natural defense system

Our immune system responds to countless stimuli over the course of our entire life. He is continually exposed to challenges, always ready to respond to any type of external "solicitation".
Very often, however, we forget that external solicitations do not only concern infections or viruses, but we can solicit our immune system even if we are constantly alarmed by other "external agents or that we believe as such".
Physical inactivity, nutritional deficiencies, stimulation of stress hormones, loss of circadian rhythms, excessive use of backlit devices, recurrent and negative thoughts, feeling of danger and dehydration, are among the main and continuous challenges that our immune system modulates to  that our body is protected and ready to react. [1-4]
A similar day in which we particularly challenge our immune system is for example waking up after 9 in the morning, not having breakfast, drinking sugary drinks, staying on the sofa all morning often watching social networks, having lunch with salt-rich foods, such as cold cuts  and processed products (sandwich bread, chips, salami, snacks, etc.), in the afternoon drink a hot chocolate and for dinner, while maybe we have a dispute with a relative or while watching the news on TV, we eat a pizza or a plate of pasta, staying awake until at least one o'clock.
To challenge our immune system for too long does not allow it to work efficiently against infections such as viruses and bacteria.  Scientific literature is now in agreement on how simple but effective rules followed loyally can make our immune system a valid ally for the duration of our life.
The first important aspect is the circadian rhythms, respecting adequate hours of sleep (at least 7 during the night) and an awakening between 5 and 8 in the morning, allows excellent stimulation of countless hormones in support of both awakening (some examples: cortisol, adrenaline, testosterone and estradiol), that of the night rest (some examples: melatonin, prolactin).
Obviously we must remember that in itself cortisol (called stress hormone) is essential for countless functions in our body, but if in excess it becomes harmful.  In fact, it is the fight or flight hormone, activates the senses, increases heart rate, alters blood pressure, has actions on the reproductive, thyroid system and many other functions, including its influence on the immune system.
For this and many other reasons, many studies have shown how regular physical activity, preferably in the morning, thanks to the stimulation of myokines (anti-inflammatory substances), adequate hours of night sleep, positive thoughts, cultivating hobbies and seeking relaxation during the hours.  afternoon and evening and an anti-inflammatory diet (negative Potential Renal Acid Load - PRAL foods), are essential tools to make our immune system efficient in any situation, even in an emergency.  [5-11]

Simple tricks can effectively support our natural defense system:

  • Waking up early (by 8 am);
  • Wet your face and wrists with cold water for a few minutes;
  • Perform physical exercises. It might be enough to jump rope, go up and down stairs, jump on the spot, run on the spot or other, simple exercises that however require heart variability (alternate one minute of rest with one minute of exercise for 5-10 times) based  personal skills;
  • Make a hearty breakfast, preferring foods rich in fiber and minerals (perhaps combining them with a complete integration such as Melcalin VITA; you can dilute 2 scoops of Melcalin Vita in water and drink during the day, or blend for breakfast in a tasty smoothie with water and fresh seasonal fruit [12-19]);
  • Avoid recurring thoughts and negative thoughts;
  • Call nice people who enjoy us;
  • Read a book, use little backlit devices (e.g. phones, tablets, PCs);
  • Dine with vegetables and functional foods (negative Potential Renal Acid Load - PRAL foods), useful for not stressing the digestive system too much, in an hourly window where you don't have to work too much;
  • Take a warm bath, useful to give a further signal of relaxation and sleep preparation.

Author: M. Lucafò, D. Boschiero


References

  1. National Library of Medicine www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000818.htm
  2. Zapatera B, Prados A, Gómez-Martínez S, Marcos A. Immunonutrition: methodology and applications. Nutr Hosp. 31 Suppl 3:145-54. 2015
  3. Albers R et al.  Markers to measure immunomodulation in human nutrition intervention studies. Br J Nutr. 94(3):452-81. 2005
  4. Calder PC & Kew S. The immune system: a target for functional foods? Br J Nutr 88, Suppl. 2, S165–S177. 2002
  5. Buxton OM, Cain SW, O'Connor SP, Porter JH, Duffy JF, Wang W, et al. Adverse metabolic consequences in humans of prolonged sleep restriction combined with circadian dis- ruption. Sci Transl Med ;4:129ra43. 2012.
  6. Scheer FA, Hilton MF, Mantzoros CS, Shea SA. Adverse metabolic and cardiovascular consequences of circadian misalignment. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA;106:4453–8. 2009.
  7. Wittert G. The relationship between sleep disorders and testosterone. Curr Opin Endocrinol Diabetes Obes ;21:239–43. 2014.
  8. Albers R et al.  Markers to measure immunomodulation in human nutrition intervention studies. Br J Nutr. 94(3):452-81. 2005
  9. Chandra RK. McCollum Award Lecture: Nutrition and immunity: lessons from the past and new insights into the future. Am J Clin Nutr 53, 1087–1101. 1991
  10. Chandra RK . Effect of vitamin and trace-element supplementation on immune responses and infection in elderly subjects. Lancet 340, 1124–1127. 1992
  11. Scrimshaw NS & SanGiovanni JP. Synergism of nutrition, infection and immunity: an overview. Am J Clin Nutr 66, 464S–477S. 1997
  12. Shaik-Dasthagirisaheb YB, Varvara G, Murmura G, Saggini A, Caraffa A, Antinolfi P, Tete' S, Tripodi D, Conti F, Cianchetti E, Toniato E, Rosati M, Speranza L, Pantalone A, Saggini R, Tei M, Speziali A, Conti P, Theoharides TC, Pandolfi F. Role of vitamins D, E and C in immunity and inflammation. J Biol Regul Homeost Agents. 27(2):291-5. 2013
  13. Tamura J, Kubota K, Murakami H, Sawamura M, Matsushima T, Tamura T, Saitoh T, Kurabayshi H, Naruse T. Immunomodulation by vitamin B12: augmentation of CD8+ T lymphocytes and natural killer (NK) cell activity in vitamin B12-deficient patients by methyl-B12 treatment.  Clin Exp Immunol. 116(1):28-32. 1999
  14. Cheng CH, Chang SJ, Lee BJ, Lin KL, Huang YC. Vitamin B6 supplementation increases immune responses in critically ill patients. Eur J Clin Nutr. 60(10):1207-13. 2006
  15. Martin Hewison. Vitamin D and the immune system: new perspectives on an old theme. Endocrinol Metab Clin North Am. 2011
  16. Stephensen CB. Vitamin A, infection, and immune function. Annu Rev Nutr. 21:167-92. 2001
  17. Holick, Michael F. Medical progress: Vitamin D deficiency. N ENGL J MED. 357; 3. 2007
  18. Zittermann A. Vitamin D and disease prevention with special reference to cardiovascular disease. Prog Biophys Mol Biol;92:39-48. 2006
  19. Martin Hewison . Author manuscript;  Vitamin D and the immune system: new perspectives on an old theme. Endocrinol Metab Clin North Am. 2011

 

Archivio

Categorie

Other newsletter in the same category