Ways to Improve the Immune System
Now more than ever, immunity is sought after by most. A common question asked is, how can I improve my immune system? How do I ensure I'm healthy?
One of the surest ways to up the immune system is by ensuring the gut is in top shape. It may seem like a far correlation but there's really a close connection between the immune system and the gut. Let me explain how that connection goes.
1. Great immune system starts in the gut
The human body is composed of trillions of microorganisms-- think as many as 100 milky way galaxies. That's how much microbes we are made of and these microbes are what protects the body from unknown pathogens-- it's basically the whole immune system. However, the microbes in our body are mostly concentrated in the gut. In the gut alone, there are still trillions of microbes composing of both the good and bad microbes.
When we say bad microbes, it doesn't mean that they shouldn't exist at all and the goal is to eliminate all bad microbes. The natural ecosystem of the body just works that way. Just like how the world isn't all cottons and rainbows, the natural ecosystem of the gut is composed of the good and bad, but the good has to outweigh the bad. Comparing it to the underwater ecosystem as well, stone fishes are the one of the most poisonous creatures for human beings. However, the that doesn't mean that we should eliminate them completely. The same logic goes with the balance of the microbes in the gut. The good and bad microbes co-exist in a balance that the good has to outweigh the bad.
70% of the Immune System Lies in the Gut!
Overall, the gut microbes ecosystem is called the microbiome in the collective sense. Going back to the connection with the immune system, majority of the microbes are in the gut, making 70% of the immune system lie in the gut.
So the next question is, how? how do I know my gut is in top shape? One way of determining good gut health is to examine your gut performance by asking, are you constipated? Do you get heartburns, refluxes? Is there bloating or too much gas after meals? Are you prone to indigestion? Do you feel nausea, headaches, migraines?
If you answered yes to any one of these, it's a sign your gut health may be compromised. Besides, the symptoms combined are signs of IBS or what we call Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
This April, it's IBS Awareness Month and with that, we hope to inform you that IBS exists!
When the gut isn't at its top shape, it's best to address is by digging deeper until the root cause is found. An example of taking the root cause approach is not simply suppressing stomach acid when during heartburn but checking why the heartburn happens. More often than not, it's not too much acid but actually a lack of it. By checking to the root cause of why the heartburn happens, one will no longer be dependent on acid blockers and one pill quick fixes. Instead, the gut is rebuilt to produce adequate acid and not have heartburns anymore.
2. Nutrients build up a strong immune system
Another sure way to build the immune system is by feeding the microbes with its favorite nutritious foods. The best foods are the prebiotic and probiotic rich foods. You may be familiar with probiotic rich foods or supplements but prebiotic rich foods are also as important. Prebiotic foods support the production of good microbes in the gut and eating a variety of these helps build a stronger gut, therefore a stronger immune system!
So what are prebiotic rich foods?
Simple- they're the fruits, vegetables, legumes, and other plants! These foods are not only prebiotic foods, but also very rich in phytonutrients. Not all foods and calories are equal and mostly, these plant foods are the ones packed with nutrients to support both the good microbes in the gut and the immune system.
3. Supplements that give extra immune protection
Another common question is, why take supplements when there's natural good food? Check out the reason why here. There are literally thousands of supplements out there and it can be so confusing which to buy and take. To keep it simple, the most basic set an average person needs to have is the following:
- A trusted Multivitamin such as the Daily Immune or ONE Multivitamin
- Quality Fish Oil that's rich in both Omega 3's, EPA, and DHA such as the EPA/DHA Essentials
- Zinc that's bio-available in forms such as the zinc chelate or picolinate
- Vitamin D such as the Vitamin D 5000 IU
- Vitamin C
That's it to cover the basics!
To know which is best, what's the right combo and so on, consult with us here.