In one study, regular cold swimming over five weeks led to increased levels of molecules that fight inflammation. Research indicates that underactivity of the immune system can result in severe infections and tumors of immunodeficiency, while overactivity results in allergic and autoimmune diseases. A 2012 study validated myrrh’s enhanced antimicrobial efficacy when used in combination with frankincense oil against a selection of pathogens. This means: Related: Ozone Therapy: Should It Be Approved for Medicinal Use? Resveratrol is a polyphenol found in grapes, rhubarb, blueberries, and peanuts. Use these veggies to replace higher-carb foods in your diet for weight loss and blood sugar control. Turn off your mobile phone! Research (although largely in animal studies) has found that intermittent fasting is beneficial for health, improving glucose metabolism, reducing blood pressure, improving cardiovascular health, increasing resistance of cells to stress and disease and reducing inflammation. It also makes the gut 'leaky,' allowing pathogens to cross into the bloodstream; causes chronic liver inflammation; and damages cilia in the airways, making the lungs more susceptible to infection. Limiting alcohol intake and quitting smoking. The authors suggested that phytoncides, which are naturally released from trees, along with decreased stress from the trip, might explain the finding. . “There’s nothing worse you could do for your immune system than smoke,” Franklin says. This Dr. Axe content is medically reviewed or fact checked to ensure factually accurate information. Plants, herbs, minerals, foods and lifestyle changes can be used to prevent and fight infections due to their antimicrobial and immune-boosting properties. What if there’s a gap in your diet? Did you know immersing yourself regularly in cold water boosts your, ? Dealing with stress becomes even more important as we age, because our immune response naturally gets weaker. If you're suffering from anxiety, consider cognitive behavioral therapy. Your natural body clock—the circadian rhythm—is set up this way, presumably so that while you sleep, your resting body can use its energy for immune clearance. If you drink, limit intake to: When you aren’t getting enough sleep, your immune system won’t be able to function properly. Research evaluating the efficacy of zinc shows that it can interfere with a molecular process that causes bacteria buildup in the nasal passages. A balanced approach to nutrition is your best bet. Cell division goes wrong, and we produce early cancer cells. This can be difficult today, especially when people are concerned about becoming ill, but it’s important. RELATED: Registered dietician Ilana Muhlstein lost 100 pounds and shows you how in her new Amazon bestseller, You Can Drop It!—pre-order yours today! Take vitamin C: "We know that vitamin C not only regulates white blood cells, but also helps them do a better job of defending the body from viruses and bacteria. Normally, the immune system has already learned at an earlier stage to identify these cells proteins as “self,” but when it identifies its own body as “non-self,” and fights it, this is called an autoimmune reaction. Adding more zinc to your immune-boosting repertoire is important in keeping your immune system at its best. The reason is that if you don't look after your teeth and gums, chronic low-grade infection sets in (a.k.a. Myrrh is a resin, or sap-like substance, that is one of the most widely used essential oils in the world. It takes a minimum of, for your body to start breaking down fat as the liver's store of glycogen is depleted. During short bouts of moderate-intensity exercise, the body releases immune cells such as monocytes, neutrophils and natural killer cells. Without a doubt, excessive alcohol consumption has a negative effect on your immune system. “The immune system isn’t prepared when a new virus or new bacteria get into the body. Learn how to fight PCOS with the right food choices. . The roots, stems and leaves of ginseng have been used for maintaining immune homeostasis and enhancing resistance to illness or infection. “While your immune system should be on patrol looking for something it needs to fight, you’ve instead sent it to your lungs, sinus passages, mouth and throat to fight the poison you just ingested. The International Journal of Immunopathology and Pharmacology reported an interesting study in 2008. Benefits of a Salt Water Flush, Including Detoxing + Pooping! Oregano essential oil is known for its healing and immune-boosting properties. More. Smoking has an aging effect on the immune system, increases the body's number of pro-inflammatory cells, and raises your risk of developing allergies or asthma. Your immune system can’t fight battles on multiple fronts and do it effectively,” Franklin says. But if the gut microbiome is lacking in diversity, you're at increased risk of infectious diseases. Any acute stress results in an immediate outpouring of inflammatory mediators in the body. Gardening may have a positive effect on the microbiome, which is closely integrated with the function of the immune system. “Excessive alcohol consumption that leads to liver issues will affect the immune system. Lowering of these hormones has an anti-inflammatory effect (although more research in humans is needed). Many of echinacea’s chemical constituents are powerful immune system stimulants that can provide significant therapeutic value. Learn to breathe! . And stress and anxiety are often be reduced by gardening. Much interest has developed about the benefits of intermittent fasting for health and weight loss. In people with cirrhosis and liver disease, I’d in many ways consider them immunocompromised,” Zapata says.