What It Really Takes To Get Your Immune System Working Well
We are getting a lot of questions about how we can improve our immune system and I think this is a really important topic at the moment and I think it has been simplified a little bit to just taking a couple of supplements and our jobs are done so I want to elaborate on that.
Gut health and the immune system
We really need to consider what’s happening with our gut health so what we need to first look at is some of the things that help the gut microbiome which is the beneficial bacteria. First, we need to look at our diet because our diet has the biggest influence on our gut microbiome and our gut microbiome is the biggest influence on our immune system. So changing the diet and having a look at what we are eating is one of the first strategies.
What nutrients are important?
The next thing we want to do is to measure some of the nutrients that drive and support the immune system. Those things are vitamin D, zinc, B12, folate, and protein intake- all of these things are required for the immune system. It’s difficult to know how much to supplement with vitamin D if you don’t know where you are starting from, some people have very low levels to start with, others have higher levels. That will influence how much you supplement for those. And also where we can find them in our diet.
Inflammation and auto-immunity
Other things we want to look at and measure is if there’s any underlying inflammatory behaviour going on so we can check markers for inflammation or autoimmune conditions. We can also look at different detoxification pathways, are they working as we expect them to be and what the thyroid is doing. So there are few things there that we can easily measure and check to know what I call what’s going on under the bonnet, our health bonnet.
How sleep and stress can be influential
We also want to look at things like the quality and quantity of our sleep. Because that affects our cortisol levels which are our stress hormone, this also feeds into affecting our glucose metabolism, insulin levels along with food. These all influence our immune system, things like if we’re run down or not getting enough sleep. This can’t be overridden by just taking something, we need to look at it more holistically. We want to look at, are we driving ourselves too hard, are we over-exercising, or under-exercising? So these factors can be all taken into consideration. There are very very important in helping our immune system. And there are other things as well like stress, how we manage stress, environmental influences, chemicals in our environment, hygiene products, food, and cleaning products. All of these things can be looked at but some of the major things to start with is to change our diet, get the sleep right, measure some of our nutrients so we know where we are starting from and we can go from there.
I hope this has been helpful 🙂
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