Every second of our lives we’re under attack. Sounds dramatic doesn’t it? But it’s true, billions of bacteria, viruses, fungi and other living stuff want to make you their home and use up all your resources. Every breath we take, every surface we touch and even the water we drink exposes us to a viral horde.
So, our bodies have developed a super-complex immune system designed to protect us from these invasions and keep us alive.
There are two main parts of the immune system and they work together:
- The immune system we’re born with which goes into action immediately when we’re invaded by a pathogen. This part of the immune response surrounds the bug, engulfs it and kills it.
- The adaptive immune system which is developed when you’re exposed to a microbe. Antibodies are produced to fight against, and remember, the bug it has come in contact with.
With the rapid spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), we’re going to explain a little bit more about this virus and how our body’s immune system can protect us from this microscopic predator.
Every day you breathe in countless millions of viral invaders and our antibodies fight back. Most viruses are harmless and get defeated before they can take hold but some viruses, such as this novel coronavirus, are deadly and these aggressive ones kill twice as many people worldwide as cancer does, around 15 million people every year.
Viruses are tiny agents that invade the cells of our body and they hijack the mitochondria to produce millions of copies of themselves, assembling a viral force which bursts out of the cell and spreads through our whole system. Viruses need a host cell to survive and they take advantage of the complex machinery, nutrients and energy in our cells, and force the cell to make countless copies of themselves and their genetic material.
So how does our body fight back against these microscopic predators? During infection, your white blood cells produce antibodies that bind to the virus and destroy it. Once an antibody binds to a virally infected cell, the immune system produces a chemical called interferon which stops the cell from replicating and making copies. There are also enzymes produced inside the cell that destroys the virus and halt its replication.
The parts of our bodies that provide such a complex and amazing defence system are:
- Our gut and its microbiome – over 70% of our immune system is located in the gut
- Our lymph glands and tonsils – identifies predators for destruction
- The bone marrow – grows B cells that produce antibodies
- Our Thymus – produces and matures T cell antibodies
- Our Spleen – filters our blood and distributes the B and T cells to the required areas to fight the virus.
All these defence forces and the networks required to keep them in good fighting order are reliant on huge levels of supplies and replacements and they also consume vast amounts of fuel and energy.
There are many things we can do to strengthen and build a robust defence system against viruses, especially the coronavirus spreading around the world. Plenty of good sleep, get out and do some exercise each day, keep our stress levels low and eat lots of colourful plant-based foods. Researchers have also identified numerous nutrients that help support a strong immune system and help us fight off invading viral agents. Superfoods such as noni fruit, goji berries, both full of antioxidants and Vitamin C, fuel our defence forces to fight back, Reishi mushroom has been shown to boost numbers of T and B antibodies and zinc helps stops the virus from entering the host cell and replicating.
All of these immune activating ingredients plus many more are included in our Body Revitaliser Essentials and create the foundation for building a strong and robust immune system.