Boosting Your Immune System Naturally: Myths vs. Facts
We have come a long way from ascribing maladies to the whims of gods. Science and medicine have advanced so much, especially over the last thirty years, that we can easily find the right information on how to boost our immune system with a few clicks.
However, the internet is a double-edged sword. The right information will quite often drown in the sea of useless or downright dangerous tips and claims. It’s not all that hard to see how we’ve arrived at this predicament – everybody claims to be an expert these days.
If you feel your immune system is compromised for any particular reason, take a look at the tips and tricks below. They can serve as a reliable starting point to separate the weed from the chaff, and put you on the right track of boosting your immune system naturally.
Fact: Increase your sexual activity
The connection between sex hormones and immune responses is undeniable. Even if you don’t dig into the science of how regular sexual activity increases the presence of antibodies in your bloodstream, you can see how regular sexual activity helps.
First of all, it improves mood. Since long-term anxiety wastes away your immunity (more on that below), it also helps that sex does so much for de-stressing.
Unfortunately, many people stuck in the rut of routine start having less sex as time rolls on. Obstacles become unavoidable. You might have work-related obligations, or you are simply overwhelmed with raising kids, but these are mostly just excuses that stand in the way of intimacy. There are solutions for everything, and they come down to organization, discussion, and playfulness.
Myth: Long-term stress makes you stronger
One of the great misconceptions that has some logical background in the “what doesn’t kill you” philosophy is that long-term stress makes you stronger and more resilient. This, of course, is far from true.
Chronic stress makes you more prone to gaining weight, getting the flu, or getting various infections. It also contributes to diabetes and heart disease. Without a doubt, constant anxiousness leads to sleep disorders that push your circadian rhythm off-balance and make you even weaker in the long run.
Many individuals have found a solution in a regular workout routine, while others prefer to combine exercise with meditation and yoga.
Fact: You are what you eat
This is a big fact that covers a lot of myths. Food is a particularly tricky topic because each person has a unique set of preferences and sensitivities, and modern dietary habits tend to be messy. However, some general guidelines are easy to abide by if you want to boost your immunity through a healthy diet.
First of all, you need to keep your metabolic “wheels” well-oiled, which means that you have to take in a lot of fluid – pure water, primarily – combined with fruits and veggies. While vitamin C is important, don’t underestimate the importance of two other foundational elements of a healthy immune system – magnesium and zinc. Magnesium can be found in chia seeds and mineral water, while legumes, nuts, and seeds make for great sources of zinc. Overall, cleaning your diet of sugar and processed foods will keep your immune system stronger in the long run.
While this might sound easy enough, people often find it difficult to give up candy, sodas, and snacks. The best way to do this is to keep your protein and vegetable-rich diet diverse and experiment with recipes for healthy snacks.
Myth: Vaccines pose a health risk
I’ve said it in the introduction, but it’s worth repeating: many people consider themselves medical experts, even though they haven’t put in the necessary time and effort to study the actual science. This is how we get a vaccine hysteria which is blown out of proportion.
Truth be told, every single thing that we do involves some degree of risk. When you jump into a car to drive, there is a 1 in 6.700 chance that you will die in an accident. The chance of getting a bad reaction to a vaccine is one in a million.
That’s why regular vaccination is important in the modern world, where “herd immunity” extends so profoundly to an individual.
Modern medicine has made enormous strides to develop the safest possible tools to keep you healthy, and refusing vaccination now means taking an unnecessary risk (rather than the other way around).
Broadly speaking, two specific signs tell you something is probably an immune-system myth.
If a claim is generalized, making a bold statement that offers a be-all-end-all answer to a predicament, it is almost certainly a myth.
If the claim is very specific, offering a one-sided solution that ignores a whole range of additional, interconnected factors, the statement is probably a myth.
You have to keep in mind that the immune system is an overwhelmingly complex network of molecules, cells, and automated body-responses that have even the cutting-edge scientific community at a loss for an explanation.
Although the scientists are pushing the boundaries of knowledge forward with unprecedented speed, there is still too much to learn. However, within the boundaries of contemporary knowledge, you can feel safe to implement various doctrines and dietary changes to strengthen your immune system.