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Article by Carmen Farrugia

Unlock key ingredients that will change your immune system for life.

Australian allergy sufferers are amongst the highest numbers worldwide. This has increased dramatically over the last thirty years.

The cells of our immune system responsible for reactions such as allergies, sensitivities and inflammation are dominant at birth as a protective mechanism. So why aren’t all babies and children allergic? It depends on their exposure to BUGS.

Studies show that children with less allergies tend to have more siblings, live a greater distance from the city and have pets. Hence, they are exposed to more ‘friendly’ type micro-organisms. The ‘clean’ environment we try to create in the city with antimicrobial wipes, sprays, bleach and detergents make our children sicker.

The cells of our immune system responsible for fighting viral and bacterial infections help balance out this allergy tendency; however, these cells are immature or under developed, when we are born. They need to be stimulated in order to become stronger. The old adage ‘if you don’t use it you lose it’ holds true.  If you visualise the immune system as an army of soldiers, then if the soldiers lie around playing cards rather than undergo physical training, the army becomes weak and inefficient. Medications such as antibiotics, steroids/cortisone, and fever suppressants do the work for the soldiers and as a consequence the immune system becomes lazy, unfit and unskilled. A vicious cycle develops where the weak immune system catches more colds and needs stronger and stronger medication to ‘get better’.

Three key ingredients: What YOU can do.

 

1.    Support Immune regulation: The T Regulatory cells (T-Reg cells) are responsible for the prevention and alleviation of inflammatory diseases such as allergies. T-Reg activity is induced by various 'friendly ' micro-organisms. These so called ‘old friends’ are harmless and are associated with mud, untreated water and fermenting vegetable matter. All of which has decreased with chlorinated water, clean modern supermarket produce and city living. Modern day ways to encourage T-Reg cell activity are; having a variety of whole foods in the diet especially fibre to encourage the growth of beneficial bacteria.  T-Reg cells primarily occur in the gut so probiotics are great at supporting these soldiers. Ensuring adequate levels of vitamin D is also essential for immune system regulation.

 

2.    Provide essential artillery to make the army strong: there is a large body of evidence supporting the use of nutrients and herbs to build the immune system. These include medicinal mushroom, vitamin C, zinc, olive leaf extract and Echinacea.

 

 

3.    Good Fever Management: when the immune system comes across a foreign ‘bug’ it sends signals to increase the set point of the core temperature in order to kill it. Shivering is initiated and the person tries to keep warm (the temperature is on the rise and the person feels cold). When the bugs are reduced the core set point is reset and the body starts to sweat (the temperature is on the way down and the person feels hot). It is important to safely encourage these actions rather than suppress them. The following blog contains practical information about fever management. http://allabouthealth.ning.com/profiles/blogs/a-word-on-fevers-in-your-child

 

Remember to consult an expert if your seeking any health related advice. Good quality, safe products are essential, and self prescribing over the counter medications is often a waste of time and money. For more information visit www.metagenics.com.au and click on Why Natural Medicine?

Your immune system will thank you for it.

Carmen Farrugia

Naturopath

20 Aug 2014

Article/Information supplied by Carmen Farrugia

Disclaimer - Any general advice given in any article should not be relied upon and should not be taken as a substitute for visiting a qualified medical Doctor.

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