What Is The Immune System

What Is The Immune System

In the fall many people think about the winter ahead and more than a few wonder what is the immune system and how can I strengthen it

Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine said ”Nature cures, not the physician” and Ben Franklin said, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. 

But you may ask, what is the immune system and how can I avoid getting sick this year?   It’s a great question, actually 2 with a short answer; by keeping the immune system strong and healthy. 

Here’s what the immune system is in very simple terms... the immune system is like the security system in your home, this system is continuously monitoring the environment for anything that is out of place, and when an unusual situation is detected, it dispatches the most appropriate defense mechanisms. 

The immune system or the 6th sense

When asked what is the immune system, one scientist paraphrased it as, “... is the sixth sense, it recognizes viruses, bacteria, fungi, microbes, germs, free radicals, mutant cells…” and we then have a variety of “soldiers”, each with it own weapons and methods of attack to destroy these invaders."

As with most Canadians, when our immune systems work well, we rarely take notice.  However, when we get sick, we realize our body is getting worn down and our immune system has been neglected. 

What the immune system has to do with aging

Did you know that the immune system is a lot more than fighting off colds and flu?  Today, enlightened thinking is that the aging process is more closely related to the functioning of the immune system than the passage of time. 

A weakened immune system

A weakened immune system results in an increased susceptibility to virtually every type of illness. 
Common signs of immune system weakness include fatigue, listlessness, repeated infections, inflammation, allergies, slow wound healing, chronic diarrhea and infections that represent an overgrowth e.g. vaginal yeast infections, oral thrush, candida, etc. 

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