Sunday, 13 November 2011

How to strengthen the immune system

How to strengthen the immune system

With the onset of cold weather we are beginning to take particular care of their health and adopt a variety of vitamins, herbs or drugs that we think will help boost immunity and to cope with colds and other vermin, which is around in the autumn and winter, a dime a dozen. But is not that simple and many of our standard beliefs are wrong.

In fact, the strengthening of immunity to think all the year round regardless of season, because if you start taking vitamins or special drugs to enhance the body's resistance, they will not act sooner than a month. We, as always, that the snow in winter on the roads is a surprise, and the flu epidemic this fall down like most of the blue.

So we read, think and make decisions.

We begin with a repetition of the basics and ask a doctor. Who else but the doctors who take the brunt of colds and other winter delights, be aware of preventive measures and precautions? Here's to them and ask.

Healthy Sleep

The fact that our health depends on the amount of quality sleep, we already know. But too often ignore this fact, and if the summer we are surrounded by additional sources of energy in the form of warm sun and a huge number of regular, fresh fruits and vegetables in the winter there is not the first nor the second or third.

According to a study published in Arch Intern Med (as well as the blog of Eric Barker), an experiment was conducted with a group of one hundred and fifty three people. Healthy people were introduced rhinoviruses (the main cause of colds). Likely to get colds in those who slept 7 hours per day, was three times higher than what the people who gave sleep 8 hours. The difference in duration of sleep, just 1 hour, and the risk of ill - over three times!

Wash your hands

The fact that you need to wash their hands, even little children know. Especially after you've been on the streets or kept in the hands of money.

I think that some useful facts can not hurt.

Studies have shown that washing hands at least 5 times a day, your chances of falling ill by 45%. Pathogenic microbes can live on your hands for a few hours, so hand washing or special handling alcohol solution (available at pharmacies or shops household chemicals and cosmetics) will help to significantly reduce the likelihood of a cold.

If you think that nothing bad will happen if you forget to wash your hands, here are some more interesting facts, after which you wash your hands after each answer the phone!

Based on interviews conducted (U.S. and Canada) 47% -60% of adults sometimes wash their hands without soap and about a quarter of those surveyed did not wash hands after sneezing or coughing. And about 45% of students did not wash their hands after using the toilet.

I think that if you conduct research among our population, the figures are not very different (and I think the picture would be even more "colorful"). Need more motivation?

Fewer cigarettes and alcohol

Yes, that drinking and smoking reduces the immune system, also known by all. I'm not talking about a pile after you've soaked in the cold or spent 5-6 hours, and hot mulled wine. Here we are more of a long and frequent use.

Our nose is special cilia (tiny hairs, which are covered by our nasal passages), which play a very important role in protecting our body from colds. They are a kind of filters that prevent the penetration of viruses. Inhaled cigarette smoke paralyzes from their work, and you open up the infection. One cigarette stops these cilia for 30-40 minutes.

Physical activity and sauna (bath)

Studies have shown that people who visit the sauna (bath) twice a week, the chances of catching a cold are reduced by 50%. Influenza viruses and colds do not tolerate temperatures above 80%, so it's not just a good time with friends. This way you also do prevention of colds.

The same goes for physical activity. The onset of cold weather does not mean cessation of physical activity. We're not bears, which hibernate in winter? Daily charging twenty minutes will be enough to reduce your chances of snot in two or three times.

Chicken Soup

Chicken soup and broth are the most common food that you advise your doctors of the world caught cold patients. It is well it moisturizes, nourishes and warms the body. Particularly well the chicken broth to which was added garlic, which, in fact, is the primary means of antiprostudnym. Just a combination of chicken soup, it works even better.
More sunlight and vitamin D

Sunlight brings the healing power of truth. Not only physically but also emotionally. The less sunny days, the more we are prone to depression and stress. And this in turn reduces the immunity even more. Under the influence of the sun in our body produces vitamin D, which also plays an important role in the fight against viruses. Little sun = vitamin D. So you should look for other sources. For example, take the form of vitamins and eating more orange juice, fish, salmon, eggs, shrimp and milk.


Massage relaxes the pleasure and relieves stress. This way you kill two birds: getting a good prevention of diseases back and increases resistance to colds.

Relaxation that you get a massage, it activates your immune system interleukins, which are leaders in the fight against cold and flu viruses.

Let's talk a bit about common misconceptions!
The fact that we think works, but really not helping

If you follow all instructions in the complex, of course you probably will not get sick. But that's not all this work alone, was not proved. This does not mean that you should abandon it and start looking for alternatives. All these tools work in one way or another. Just do not perceive them as a panacea for winter viruses and rely on them 100%.

Vitamin C. No one cancels the importance of this vitamin in the strengthening of our health. Just what you begin to eat packs of ascorbic acid (in the permitted limits, of course) absolutely does not help. Studies involving 11 000 participants showed that the dose of vitamin C in 200 mg increases the resistance to cold for a few hours.

That is, if you are going to the clinic for help at the height of the epidemic, it will help, but does not guarantee protection for the whole day. Remember, you only have a few hours!

Echinacea. Basically, it all depends on processing, which passed the plant. But it can be safely regarded as a sort of placebo medication for colds. Echinacea works no better and no worse than any other herbal tea for colds.

But we are mindful that self-hypnosis - a great power.

Zinc. Some of the studies have shown that if you take zinc at the first symptoms of colds during the first day, a cold can retreat. But then the results of these studies have been questioned. Were conducted one more study and more than fourteen placebo-controlled studies on the effects of zinc on the body in fighting the common cold have shown an interesting result: 7 showed a positive effect, other 7 did not show any effect.

That is, when taking zinc likely to get sick you have 50% to 50% - either sick or not.

Sahlin and other saline nasal sprays. These nasal sprays can help to meet the total body burden, but do not guarantee you reliable protection. That is, if you think you have sprinkled spray before going out, put it in front of an invisible shield against viruses, you are mistaken. Together they will help play a big role, but by themselves they will not particularly help.

Nonprescription prophylaxis and antihistamines. As well as salt spray, they will help alleviate a common condition, but will not protect you from viruses. Just like not shorten the illness.

Then just remember all the "favorite" popular saying that if you treat a cold, it will be held for seven days, and if not treated, for the week.

With antibiotics. Antibiotics do not work too, as the common cold - is a virus, but their main task - the fight against bacteria. That is the big guns are making use of only when cold tightened and gradually turns into pneumonia, bronchitis or especially severe bacterial tonsillitis.

But for some reason, every time you approach the epidemic from the shelves of pharmacies antibiotics just magically blown by the wind.

Increasing the number of people affected by cold. When young children are just beginning to walk in the garden, they often get sick. After about a year, maximum two, a variant of "walking a week, two sick" changes to "get sick a few times a year." Organism acquires immunity to various viruses and becomes stronger. The older the person, the more he suffered from cold, especially in large type virus had immunity. Provided, of course, that it is more or less healthy lifestyle.

Therefore, despite the huge accumulation of sick people in hospitals, clinics and doctors get sick is not so often compared to other people.

All of the above can be true or not. Each of us has our own immune system and health status are also all different. But at least follow basic rules of hygiene, enough sleep, active living, healthy eating and good humor to help cope with the upcoming cold weather.

I can only add that in recent years one of the proven and tasty home funds to fight the common cold was ginger tea. Moreover, in several ways: a plain black tea with a pinch of dried ginger, or a piece of fresh root ginger and milk tea (sometimes called Tibetan) with the addition of cardamom and ground nutmeg. Ginger is an excellent natural antiseptic and in company with cardamom and nutmeg great fights colds and bad mood. Every time I start Pershiy throat, I brewed myself a tea. And drink it just like that at least several times a week can be a very good winter habit.

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