Building and maintaining our immune systems are vital during any age and season, however, as the winter season is in full effect, your immune system requires some extra protection to avoid colds and flu.
What is the Immune System?
The immune system is a complex organ system in the body comprised of white blood cells, skin, mucus and bacteria. Its central role is to seek, recruit, attack and destroy foreign invaders, such as bacteria and viruses that enter the body. There are two main levels of immunity:
1. Innate immunity system
This system provides a quick first line of defence and acts against a wide range of pathogens. The innate immunity system refers to nonspecific defence mechanisms that come into play immediately or within hours of an antigen’s appearance in the body. These mechanisms include physical barriers such as skin, chemicals in the blood, and immune system cells that attack foreign cells in the body. The chemical properties of the antigen activate the innate immune response.
2. Adaptive Immune System
This level refers to antigen-specific immune response. The adaptive immune response is more complicated than the innate one. The antigen first must be processed and recognized. Once an antigen is identified, the adaptive immune system creates an army of immune cells specifically designed to attack that antigen. Adaptive immunity also includes a “memory” that makes future responses against a specific antigen more efficient.
How to Support your Immune System
The immune system is precisely that – a system, not a single entity. For it to function well, it requires balance and harmony. Researchers are still exploring the effects of diet, exercise, age, psychological stress, and other factors on the immune response.
In general, a healthy lifestyle is the single best step you can take toward naturally keeping your immune system strong and healthy. Every system in your body, including the immune system, functions better when following balanced and healthy strategies such as these:
- Eating a whole food diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables
- Exercising regularly
- Staying hydrated
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Getting enough sleep
- Reducing stress
- Drinking alcohol in moderation
- Not smoking
Speak with your health care professional for ideas on how to best support your immune system and visit our website for some healthy recipes and activities to keep you and your immune system strong and protected.
Servicing the Ottawa Community since 1998. We are now accepting clients in Smith Falls, Kemptville, Prescott, Brockville, through to Kingston, Ontario.
#immunesystem #support #ageing #seniorcare #seniorliving #healthcare #ottawahomecare #elderlycare #assistedliving #caregiving #homehealthcare #dementia #eldercare #elderly #alzheimers #parkinsons #health #mealassistance #homecare #ottnews #seniorhomecareinottawa #mealsonwheels #senior #dementiacare #Ottawa #ottawaretirement #retirement #ottcity #LHIN