Healthy Immune System
Modern conventional medicine battles disease directly by means of drugs, surgery, radiation, and other therapies, but true health can be attained only by maintaining a healthy, properly functioning immune system. The immune system fights off disease-causing microorganisms and that engineers the healing process. Even the aging process may be more closely related to the functioning of the immune system than to the passage of time.
The task of the immune system is to identify those things that are naturally in the body and those that are foreign or otherwise harmful material, and then to neutralize or destroy the foreign material. The immune system is a system of complex interactions involving many different organs, structures, and substances, among them white blood cells, bone marrow, the lymphatic vessels and organs, specialized cells found in various body tissues, and specialized substances, called serum factors, that are present in the blood. Ideally, all of these components work together to protect the body against infection and disease.
In cell mediated immunity, white blood cells called T-cells, identify and then destroy cancerous cells, viruses, and microorganisms like bacteria and fungi. When a B-cell is presented with a particular antigen, it engineers an antibody to match it and stores a blue print of the invader so that it can initiate the production of antibodies in case of subsequent exposure, even if a long period of time elapses in between. These cells are your body’s first line of defense.
There are two primary types of immune system disorders. Immunodeficiency diseases result from weakened immune function. Autoimmune diseases occur when the body’s own immune system cells attack healthy cells, as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus.
The immune system can work as it should only if it is cared for properly. This means getting all the right nutrients and providing the right environment, plus avoiding those things that depress immunity. Many elements in our environment compromise our immune systems’ defensive abilities. The chemicals in household cleaners, the overuse of antibiotics, pesticides, and additives in foods and exposure to environmental pollutants all place a strain on the immune system.
Choices in your everyday life are the biggest factors that influence your immune defenses. Not smoking, increasing fruits and vegetables in your diet, eating regular meals, maintaining a healthy weight, get enough sleep and relaxation time, exercise, eat a high fiber, low fat diet and use nutritional supplements that support immune function.
Vitamin A is a powerful immune booster. White blood cells can not survive with out vitamin A. Recommended daily doses are 1,000mcg for men and 800mcg for non-pregnant women. Note: Pregnant women should take a carotene complex in combination with a wide range of other antioxidants to provide the benefits of vitamin A, without the risk.
Vitamin D. Beyond Vitamin D’s positive affects on bone health, it offers a tremendous variety of additional benefits. Its helpful affects contribute to preserving muscle strength and improving cardiovascular health, as well as protecting us from autoimmune diseases and cancer. There are receptors for this hormone all over the body including the brain, heart, breasts, prostate, and immune cells. This helps explain why Vitamin D has such widespread affects. It has been shown to have support the immune system and have anti viral properties.I like to keep patients serum levels from 60-100 ng/ml . Sometimes this requires doses of 1000 – 5000 IU a day
Zinc helps to fight and prevent free radicals. Zinc also increases the absorption of vitamin A. Recommended daily dose is 15mg daily for men and 12mg daily for women. Ensure all minerals are albion chelated minerals.
Vitamins C and E helps the body resist oxidative stress and fights free radicals. Recommended daily dose ranges from 500-1,000 mg of vitamin C and 400-800iu of vitamin E. Ensure this is mixed tocopherols.
Coenzyme Q10 is found in all parts of the body. This substance plays a critical role in the production of energy in every cell of the body. It aids circulation, stimulates the immune system, increases tissue oxygenation, and has vital anti-aging effects. Research has shown that CoQ10 has the ability to counter histamine, and therefore is also beneficial for people with allergies, asthma, or respiratory disease. It is also beneficial in fighting obesity, candidiasis, multiple sclerosis, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. CoQ10 along with B6 appear to increase lymphocytes, which are important components of the immune system. Recommended daily dose suggests starting at 10mg daily and building up gradually as needed.
Iron is essential for the white blood cells that kill bacteria. The daily recommended dietary allowance is 10mg for men and 15 mg for premenopausal women. Supplemental iron may not be appropriate for postmenopausal women.
Folic Acid, a B vitamin, largely impacts the immune system. Prevents cardiovascular disease and cervical dysplasia. Along with zinc, selenium, iron, copper, beta-carotene, and vitamins A, C, and D, defend against infectious agents. The issue with folic acid is many people might have a genetic defect in their ability to methylate or activate their folic acid. It is critical to check the MTHFR gene to understand if one needs the methylated form of folic acid.
Selenium protects the immune system by preventing the formation of free radicals that can damage the body. Selenium plays a vital role in regulating the effects of thyroid hormone on fat metabolism. The daily recommended dietary allowance is 50mcg to 200 mcg.
Echinacea fights inflammation and bacterial and viral infection. Stimulates certain white blood cells. Good for the immune system and the lymphatic system. Recommended not to take long term on a consecutive basis. Take echinacea two weeks on two weeks off.
Elderberry combats free radicals and inflammation. Relieves coughs and congestion. Builds the blood, cleanses the system, eases constipation. Enhances immune system function. Increases perspiration, lowers fever, soothes the respiratory tract, and stimulates circulation. Effective against flu viruses. Consider True Botanica Elderberry-Thyme syrup from the medicinal store.
Milk Thistle protects the liver from toxins and pollutants by preventing free radical damage and stimulates production of new liver cells. Also protects the kidneys. Good for gallbladder and adrenal disorders, psoriasis, weakened immune system, IBS, and all liver disorders. Have shown anticancer effects against prostate cancer and breast cancer. The medicinal store carries a milk thistle product from designs for health that is supportive to the liver.
Garlic detoxifies the body and protects against infection by enhancing immune function. Lowers blood pressure and improves circulation. Lowers blood lipid levels. Helps stabilize blood sugar levels. Aids in treatment of arteriosclerosis, arthritis, asthma, cancer, circulatory problems, colds and flu, digestive problems, heart disorders, insomnia, liver disease, sinusitis, ulcers, and yeast infections. Taking garlic in a supplement is great but you can also eat raw garlic. Take a clove of garlic and cut it into quarters. Swallow the quarters like a pill. It is a great and very potent way of getting the anti-oxidant properties. If you do this frequently, the smell of garlic will not be a problem.
Astragalus a.k.a. Huang qi acts as a tonic to protect the immune system. Aids adrenal gland function and digestion. Increases metabolism, produces spontaneous sweating, promotes healing, and provides energy to combat fatigue and prolonged stress. Increases stamina. Good for colds, flu, immune deficiency related problems, including AIDS, cancer and tumors. Caution: should not be taken if fever is present. Consider ImmuCare 1 from Natura Health Products or Viracid from OrthoMolecular Products.
Some healthy solutions from our store include:
ImmuCare 1: Immucare I is a concentrated immune system tonic designed to build, nourish and invigorate the blood while supporting healthy function of the immune, digestive and endocrine systems.
ImmuCare 2: Immucare II is designed to support key systems in the body responsible for maintaining a healthy immune system, including the liver, digestive tract, endocrine glands and spleen.
ImmunotiX: ImmunotiX 250™ delivers 250 mg of whole glucan particle per capsule. *Supports Healthy Immune Function* *Supports the Body’s Defenses Against Seasonal Immune Challenges*
Prolive: a highly effective, natural food supplement obtained from selected extracts of the olive tree formulated with antioxidants (vit A, C, E and selenium) Increase your water intake while using this product.
Viral Immune Spray: a homeopathic remedy to fight viral attacks on your immune system.
Bacterial Immune Spray: a homeopathic remedy to fight bacterial attacks on your immune system.
Winter Tonic/Winter Balance: a homeopathic remedy during the flu season to prevent and fight off infection.
WholeMune: By supporting higher levels of immune function, WholeMune helps build the critical foundation of immune strength to last throughout the season.
Viracid: Viracid provides a powerful combination of key nutrients and botanical extracts that provide immediate support for immune challenges.
Take an inventory of the factors that may be compromising your immune system and take steps to correct them. Two of the most common immune suppressors include stress and incorrect diet. Your immune system can’t do it without you. Adopt a balanced diet, healthy lifestyle, positive attitude, and see your doctor on advice on which supplement and herbal extract is right for you.