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What is your immune system?
Your immune system is your body’s primary defence system. Working to keep microbes (germs) out of your body and to destroy any that get in,1 it has the ability not just to fight off new infections, but to remember all the invading germs it has fought before.
How your immune system works
Your immune system defends your body against invaders with the help of a complete network of organs, cell and proteins. In other words, your immune system is precisely that, a system not a single entity,3a with different parts that actively fight infection.4a
• White blood cells hunt around your body looking for germs and attacking them4b
• Proteins called antibodies help white blood cells find and attack germs4c
• A series of small proteins found in the blood called the complement system assist white blood cells and antibodies in their defence duties4d
• The lymphatic system, a set of tubes a bit like veins and arteries, acts as battle ground for fighting germs and cancer cells, and managing your fluid levels4e
• The spleen is an organ that filters your blood, removing germs and damaged blood cells4f
• Bone marrow is where your white and red blood cells originate from4g
• The Thymus is another place where blood is filtered, and an additional source of white blood cells4h
What causes immune system problems?
As your immune system is so complex, it is not surprising that it can play up from time to time, or even on a regular basis. The reasons for this can involve too much or too little defense.
Underactive immune system
An underactive immune system means there is too little defence – a reduced ability to fight off germs. This can result from certain inherited diseases, infectious diseases or treatments that can affect the immune system such as chemotherapy.4j
Overactive immune system
An overactive immune system means there too much defense. Your immune system leaps into action too often, attacking and damaging its own tissues. This can cause a range of issues from common allergies such as hayfever to more serious immune system disorders including autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes.4i
Ways to strengthen your immune system
• Start with the basics of a good diet and regular exercise3c
• Take care of your gut by cutting back on alcohol and eating immune boosting foods: probiotics such as natural yoghurt, fibrous foods like fruit, grains and vegetables (particularly sprouted vegetables such as alfalfa and mung bean sprouts), fermented and cultured foods such as kimchi and pickles, gut-soothing foods like almonds, coconut oil, figs, parsley and prunes5,6
• Maintain good hygiene, which includes taking care of your teeth – daily flossing and regular visits to the dentist3b,7a,7b
• Get sufficient sleep as this is the time at which your body heals and defends itself – a lack of sleep or irregular sleeping patterns makes you more likely to get sick7c
• Regular daily sun exposure is one of the best ways to get Vitamin D which is important for immune system health, but be sun smart and avoid the midday sun8
• Manage your stress levels considering that while a little stress is normal, too much stress can lower your natural defences – make time to relax7d
• Avoid contact with people who appear sick – look out for runny, red noses9a
• Take a preventative approach and talk to your doctor about making sure your vaccines are up to date9b
• Take a natural supplement to enhance immune system functioning
How Ginsana supports your immune system
Ginsana is a clinically researched natural medicine. It contains G115, a standardised ginseng root extract, which has more than 40 years of research and more than 25 clinical studies validating its efficacy. Ginsana has been shown to:
1. Strengthen the immune system and improve immune response10-15 which helps to support and maintain general health and wellbeing.
2. Improve energy levels and optimise energy utilisation to help reduce tiredness and fatigue. 16-21
3. Support physical performance by increasing endurance18-20,22shortening and recovery time after periods of increased physical demand.17,19-23
Please note: This is educational information only and should not be used for diagnosis. For more information on your immune system, consult your healthcare professional.
1. Johns Hopkins Medicine. Immune System. Available at: https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/healthlibrary/conditions/infectious_diseases/immune_system_85,P00630#. Accessed 18 February 2019.
2. ImMunoGeneTics. Understanding the Immune System and How It Works. Available at: http://www.imgt.org/IMGTeducation/Tutorials/ImmuneSystem/UK/the_immune_system.pdf. Accessed 18 February 2019.
3. Harvard Health Publishing. How to boost your immune system. Available at: https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/how-to-boost-your-immune-system. Accessed 18 February 2019.
4. Better Health Channel. Immune system. Available at: https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/conditionsandtreatments/immune-system. Accessed February 2019.
5. Blum S. What healing your gut can do for your immune system. Available at: https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/arthritis-and-your-immune-system. Accessed August 2018.
6. Dr Axe. Sprout guide: how to sprout grains, nuts & beans. Available at: https://draxe.com/sprout. Accessed August 2018.
7. Healthline. Why am I always sick? Available at: https://www.healthline.com/health/cold-flu/always-sick#sleep Accessed August 2018.
8. Nazish N. Why sunlight is actually good for you. Available at: https://www.forbes.com/sites/nomanazish/2018/02/28/why-sunlight-is-actually-good-for-you/#34e0db535cd9 Accessed August 2018.
9. Mayo Clinic. Primary immunodeficiency. Available at: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/primary-immunodeficiency/symptoms-causes/syc-20376905 Accessed August 2018.
10. Gundling K et al. Focus Altern Complement Ther 2001;7(1):95.
11. Scaglione F, et al. Drugs Exptl Clin Res 1990;16(10):537-542.
12. Scaglione F, et al. Int18 J Immunother 1994;10(1):21-24.
13. Scaglione F, et al. Drugs Exptl Clin Res 1996;22(2):65-72.
14. Scaglione F, et al. Clin Drug Invest 2001;21(1):41-45.
15. Scaglione F, et al. Evid Based Integrative Med 2005;2(4);195-206.
16. Dörling E, et al. Notab Medi 1980;10(5):241-246.
17. Forgo I, Kirchdorfer AM. Aerztl Praxis 1981;33(44):1784-1786.
18. Forgo I, Kirchdorfer AM. Comm 3 Notab Med 1982;12(9):721-727.
19. Forgo I, Schimert G. Notab Med 1985;15(9):636-640.
20. Ardenne M von, Klemm W. Panminerva Med 1987;29(2):143-150.
21. Rosenfeld MS, et al. Sem Med 1989;173(9):148-154.
22. Schepdael P. Acta Ther 1993;19:337-347.
23. Forgo I. MMW 1983;125(38):822-824.
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