Inability of bacteria by themselves, to create disease is further confirmed by, the well known fact that human body possess natural immunity. Human beings are more or less affected by hereditary or acquired disease taints, morbid, encumbrances and drug poisoning, due to prolonged violation of nature’s laws and also suppression of acute and chronic diseases with unnatural methods and drugs.Immunity is a state of protection against disease through the activities of the immune system. It is classified as under.
1. Innate or Natural immunity, which is the inherent power present in our body from birth and
2. Acquired or adaptive immunity, which is developed either through exposure to invading micro-organisms or through immunization.
The immune system is the body’s primary defensive mechanism against the attacks of micro-organisms, abnormal cells and chemicals. Generally, vast majority of microbes are not harmful. On the contrary, many are helpful, including the natural flora present in the body in the intestines “good” microbes prevent bad bacteria from flourishing. When these good microbes are depleted, diarrhoea, often occurs.
“Immune system is the body’s doctor, our own personal physician that cures and protects us from a panoply of diseases.”
A healthy body teems with many millions of different white blood cells that work together and destroy bacteria and viruses because WBC’s are so vital to the immune response, they are used as the key measure of Immune System.
The Immune Force
Immune system is made up of a complicated network of organs with the power to manufacture, store and aid the team of WBC’s that fight against diseases. Each individual player is in constant communication with the others via nerves, hormones and the brain. Its an amazing, high-wire balancing act and these are the players that keep it all in synchrony.
1. Bone Marrow: Bone marrow is at the core of certain long bones, such as the upper arm bone which produces Beta-cells, natural killer cells, phagocytes and immature T-cells through a process called Haematopoiesis.
2. The Lymph vessels: Comprises a special circulation system throughout the body that carries lymph, a yellowish liquid around the body which accounts for about a quarter of the total weight of the immune system and is rich in the beta-cells and T-cells that battle infection.
3. The Lymph Nodes: Small bean shaped lymph nodes are found throughout the lymph systems and cluster where lymph vessels converge in the neck, chest, armpits, abdomen and groin. Each node contains a mesh that filters the lymph to remove antigens and each node also serves as a hub where white blood cells gather until called to action. When the body is fighting an infection, the lymph nodes can swell to the point where one can easily feel them
4. Thymus Gland: It is a gland behind the breast bone, where baby T-cells multiply and in a process called T-cells “education”, learn to target specific antigens. Scientists once thought that the thymus shut down in early adulthood after producing a life times worth of T-cells. Now, it is clear that the gland stays functional far longer.
5. The Liver: It is not technically a part of the immune system. But it is a vital partner that helps to protect the body by transforming harmful chemicals like poisons, pesticides and environmental pollutants into harmless products, which can then be removed from the body in bile or urine.
6. The Spleen: is another place where WBC’s congregate before being deployed. It is also a spot where some immune cells are activated and where worn-out blood cells and foreign materials are filtered from the blood.
7. PEYER’S Patches: These are OVAL lumps of tissue similar to the tonsils and adenoids in their function and composition. They are found on mucous membranes lining the small intestines.
Contributions Factors For Decreased Immunity : Unnatural Life Style towards
- Unnatural Food and Drinks: eating such as non-vegetarian food, eggs, frozen, processed, preserved, refined, coloured, deodorised, white flour, sugar foods, eating saturated fats, hydrogenated oils, oily and fried foods and intake of coffee, tea, bottled aerated drinks, overeating, untimely eating, late lunch and dinner etc.
- Sedentary Life and no physical exercise.
- Inadequate Sleep and Rest.
- Air Pollution and Toxicity.
- Addictions – Tobacco, smoking, Alcohol, pan masala, jarda and drugs.
- Taking antibiotics medicines frequently.
contributing factors : Physical and mental.
METHODS TO IMPROVE NATURAL IMMUNITY
Creating Strong Immunity Through Lifestyle
Every thing we do, everything we touch, breathe, eat and think affects our immunity. How we live our life is the most powerful resource known for preserving and restoring our immunity. Factors such as sleep, exercise, nutrition, stress reduction and spiritual connection provide the foundation for a strong immune response.
A healthy life style is a natural way to build our immunity by highly skilled at fine tuning of the life style to produce maximum health. These changes can be incorporated into daily life gradually or at our own pace.
Lifestyle and Immunity
Our health depends on the balance between the strength of our immune system and its dealing with potentially invading particles.
Inability of bacteria by themselves, to create disease is further confirmed by the well known fact that human body possess natural immunity. Human being are more or less affected by hereditary or acquired disease taints, morbid, encumbrances and drug poisoning, due to prolonged violation of nature’s laws and also suppression of acute and chronic diseases with unnatural methods and drugs.
Nutrition and the Immune System
A healthy diet is absolutely essential to maintain good immunity. Food provides our cells with the raw materials for energy and also immune boosting phytochemicals and antioxidants. A healthy immune system depends on adequate supply of vitamins, minerals and other metabolic nutrients necessary for peak fighting performances. Its efficient function depends on Vitamin A, B6, C, E and minerals such as iron, magnesium, calcium, selenium and zinc, which are essential for enhancing cell-to-cell communication and also act as a antioxidants. Antioxidants are chemicals that neutralizes the harmful molecules called free radicals, which causes damage to the healthy cells in the body.
Vitamin C: It is the most important vitamin for the health of the immune system. It has potent antiviral properties. It is also antibacterial and is essential for disarming arid devouring invading pathogens carried out by the immune cells, which stimulate the production of specific antibodies. This process enhanced by the presence of zinc. It is also needed for the production of strong collagen and connective tissue which does not allow pathogens easy access to spread between organs and body tissues. When in good health an adult needs 1000-2000 mg of vitamin C per day. This can double or treble during acute and chronic diseases. The body cannot manufacture its own vitamm-C so it must be obtained through diet. Rich natural sources include all citrous fruits, leafy vegetables, berries, Indian gooseberry (amla), kiwi fruit, papaya, parsley, etc. if diet contains plenty of fruits and vegetables one will get enough vitamin C.
Vitamin A: Immune system needs adequate supplies of vitamin A as it has potent anti-viral properties. It is important for the health of mucous membranes such as those found in nose, throat, lungs and vagina as these surface areas are constant in battle with invading pathogens. Plentiful amounts of vitamin A exist in red and yellow fruits and vegetables such as carrots, pumpkins, papaya, in green vegetables and also found in cheese.
Vitamin B6: The ability of the white cells to eat offending pathogens is enhanced by this vitamin. Thymus gland requires good levels of vitamin B6. Food sources include brown rice, green vegetables and brewer’s yeast.
Vitamin E: It is a powerful anti-oxidant that works closely with vitamin C. It protects body cells against harmful effects of free radical damage and toxins. Rich sources include wheat germ, sunflower oil, almonds, pea nuts, sunflower seeds, cashew nuts sweet potato, butter and green vegetables.
Magnesium: It is essential for proper thymus gland functions and also required for the formation of prostaglandins and for controlling histamine levels. It is found in dark green vegetables, soya beans, sesame and pumpkin seeds.
Calcium: It plays many roles in the immune system. Firstly, it is involved in the synthesis of enzymes that T-cells use to defeat pathogen invaders. Like vitamin C, it is essential for enabling the white cells to digest and destroy certain viruses. Calcium is present abundant in dairy products but it is better to eat nuts, seeds and green vegetables to balance calcium and magnesium.
Selenium: It is involved in antibody synthesis. It works in combination with vitamin E. Rich sources of selenium are onion, garlic, whole grains and cereals although a certain amount can be derived from green vegetables.
Iron: It plays an essential role in the production of all white blood cells and is involved in the synthesis of antibodies. The richest sources of iron are green vegetables, wheat grass juice, whole grains, dates, dry grapes, other dry fruits and molasses.
Zinc: Thymus gland requires zinc to manufacture the T-cells that fight pathogens and towards active maturity of these cells. It is found in chickpeas, wheat germ, peas, brown rice cashew nuts and pumpkin seeds.
Manganese: It is a trace mineral in required for bone and cartilage formation and to control glucose metabolism. Good sources are whole grains, wheat germ, rice bran, nuts, ginger and cloves. Tea, coffee and smoking hinder absorption for manganese from our food intake.
The body appearance and vitality reflects the health of the immune system. The body has a remarkable ability to increase its metabolic capacity through consistent regular physical exercise. Overall fitness creates reserve capacity that not only serves as a buffer against disease but also helps us to recover more quickly.
Exercise has an immediate effect on the body. By stimulating circulation – immune cells travel more quickly through the body, attacking and destroying invaders before they harm. By increasing muscle activity – moves dead WBC’s and toxins through and out of the lymphatic vessels.
It also helps to improve self-confidence and self esteem which are helpful to minimize the negative effects of stress.
Aerobics / Warm-up Exercises: Aerobic exercises means which increase the supply of oxygen to the body Oxygen plays a key role in our immune function. It is the source of ammunition used by natural killer T-cells against viruses and tumours. Aerobic exercises includes walking, jogging, running, swimming, tread mill etc. In fact aerobics like swimming and walking can be modified to become more therapeutic by slowing them down and focussing on breath. Mild fitness practices are at least as beneficial as vigorous fitness practices. So when you exercise be mindful and monitor your self carefully doing in the comfort zone,
Yoga : Yoga is a subtle form of exercise that originated in more than 2000 years ago. Hatha yoga of Patanjali provides a subtle and powerful form of healing. Each asana of posture is designed to stretch the muscles, flex the joints and stimulate the internal organs and endocrine glands in various areas of the body. A thorough session of yoga can provide the sense of deep relaxation and efficient functioning of immune system. The following yogasanas are useful to practice daily.
- Ardha Matsyendrasan
- Yoga Mudra
- Pada Hastasan
- Kali Chakrasan
- Surya Namaskar etc.
Hatha yoga can be complemented by other practices which include breathing exercises, meditation and karma yoga for health and vibrant immunity.
Adequate or Good Sleep and Rest: Natural immunity depends on adequate restful sleep to restore the vitality of body and to refresh our-minds. During deep sleep the body releases potent immune enhancing substances that strengthen immune function. It is especially important to have additional sleep and rest hours when we are ill. The quality of health depends mostly on the quality of sleep. The lack or loss of sleep depresses natural immune responses such as reduction in the percentage of infection fighting T-cells. Even a modest disturbance of sleep produces a reduction of natural immune responses.
Stress Reducing Methods: The impact of stress on immunity is susceptibility to illness. Stress has also been found to stimulate immune-suppressing chemicals such as adrenaline, causes decreased T-cell production and anti-body levels. Research has found that stress reducers such as meditation, Relaxation techniques such as Instant Relaxation Techniques [IRT], Quick Relaxation Techniques [QRT], Deep Relaxation Techniques [DRTJ and Hypnosis can effectively enhance immunity.
Stress management techniques like Self Management of Excessive Tension [SMET] can improve health, attitude, productivity, relationships and longevity.
The body always attempts to eliminate toxins from the system through natural eliminative organs to maintain their full ability to function. Naturopathy has many natural detoxification mechanisms. The organs that perform this task are the skin, lungs, gastrointestinal tract [GIT], kidneys and liver.
These methods include:
- Drinking enough water [3 liters per day].
- Juicing and fasting.
- Exposing the body to sun light at morning and evening hours for a short period.
- Natural Diet.
- Breathing Techniques especially all types of pranayamas and fresh air breathing.
- Detoxifying baths such as Steam and sauna, mud baths, under water massage, Jacuzzi, circular jet shower, hip bath, spinal baths of various water temperatures are all helpful.
- Massage : It is another excellent complement to any detoxification program. Body responds both externally and internally to friction on the skin, pressure on deeper tissues and sensor input around the joints.
To function and survive well every cell must continuously receive nutrients, water and oxygen, while expelling toxic wastes. This requires good circulation, massage increases circulation which facilitates cleansing and removal of waste materials from the lymph system throughout the body. It improves blood and lymph circulation, increases oxygen supply to cells and eliminates excess fluid in the muscles and tissues. Massage also directly affects nerves and helps the body and mind to cope up with stress and pain. Massage enhances immune function most effectively in a natural way.
Strengthen your immune system naturally and your chance of staying healthy, robust and vigorous will soar.