What are we talking about ?
For the body, immunity means being able to set up its various defense systems in order to protect itself against external attacks. Indeed our environment is full of viruses and other bacteria, which develop widely in winter. Moreover, nothing like a very warm human body to make a good cozy nest and proliferate. The challenge, for a strong immunity, will therefore be to set up an immune response to these attacks, as quickly as possible and in an optimal manner.
How does the immune response work?
To deal with these attacks, there are three immune responses triggered by the body:
- Physical barriers: the skin and the various mucous membranes.
- Non-specific immunity: it is triggered when physical barriers are no longer effective enough to protect the human body.
- Specific immunity: it follows on from innate immunity, when the latter is overwhelmed by microbial invasion.
Activation of these three systems triggers the immune response.
Are there factors influencing the immune response?
Two factors influence our immune system:
- The Life Cycle: Like a bell, our immune system starts out low when we are born. Then it strengthens to become optimal in adulthood. And finally begins its phase of decline to reach a level of immune response slowed down and less efficient in the elderly.
- Lifestyle: smoking, alcohol, low amount of sleep, stress, etc. All of these factors will promote infections and have a negative effect on the quality of the immune response.
What are the signs characterizing a weakening of the immune defences?
To recognize a weakening of your immune defenses, you have several indicators that you can easily detect.
- Chronic fatigue: you have trouble recovering on a daily basis.
- Prolonged healing: indeed when the immune system is weakened, the healing process is slowed down.
- A multiplication of infections: with a weak immunity, you are more prone to external attacks.
What should we do to have a strong immunity?
Several avenues should be pursued to achieve this objective.
Regular physical activity will allow you to boost your body and place it in an environment conducive to defense against external aggressions.
Remember the second factor influencing the immune system: lifestyle. Adopting a healthy diet, full of vitamins, minerals and trace elements will already be a big step towards a rapid and optimal immune response.
Sufficient intake of vitamins C and D, antioxidants and zinc.
Focus on ZINC
One of the most important minerals in the body
Zinc is a trace element which is present naturally in certain foods, it is present in our body but is not stored, which is why a zinc-based food supplement can be taken in addition to a varied diet and balanced and healthy behavior.
Zinc occurs naturally in all body tissues and fluids but is most abundant in the brain.
It intervenes in the activity of more than 300 enzymes acting specifically for the protection of our cells.
Roles of Zinc in Immune Function
Zinc has a key role in immune function, so it can help protect our bodies during seasonal changes, such as the onset of winter.
It strengthens the healing system to make it faster and thus guarantee ideal physical barriers.
It allows the white blood cells deployed during an immune response to have a high level of performance.
Sources of zinc
The best dietary sources of zinc are:
- shellfish (especially oysters)
- red meat (liver)
- whole grains
- the egg yolk
It is not uncommon to suffer from a zinc deficiency. A large part of the population suffers from it without even knowing it. In addition, it is important to note that a vegetarian diet is naturally low in zinc because zinc of plant origin is less well assimilated by the body. It is therefore essential to avoid any risk of deficiency to supplement with zinc as part of a vegetarian diet.
In case of zinc deficiency, the following signs can be noted:
- A great tiredness
- Sensory disturbances (smell, taste, sight)
- Loss of appetite and weight
- Growth retardation and learning difficulties
- Skin problems (dryness, pimples, etc.).