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Immune System Busters: 7 Things That Are Bad for You

By    |   Tuesday, 17 May 2016 02:07 PM

Your immune system protects you from infections, viruses, and chronic illness. Your lifestyle can play a major role in how well it works.

Check this list of seven things that could be weakening your immune system.

1. Stress
According to Holtorf Medical Group, a stress-filled lifestyle can cause your adrenal glands to go into overdrive and produce excess cortisol, which causes important immune system cells to disappear from the bloodstream. High cortisol levels also prevent the body from producing healthy prostaglandins that support good immune system function.

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2. Lack of exposure to germs
While it may seem counterintuitive, regular exposure to bacteria, especially during childhood, strengthens the immune system and studies show it reduces the risk of developing autoimmune diseases, allergies, and asthma later in life, explains Holtorf Medical Group.

3. Lack of sleep
People who are short on sleep are more likely to get sick, says WebMD. A lack of sleep increases inflammation throughout the body and increases production of a stress hormone that weakens the immune system. Studies indicate that 7 to 9 hours of sleep are required for good health.

4. Environmental toxins
Our exposure to chemicals in the environment such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), mercury, and pesticides weaken the immune system over time and can even cause life-threatening autoimmune responses, says Prevention. To limit your exposure, buy organic foods when possible, keep your distance from neighbors using pesticides in their yards, use natural gardening practices, and choose household products made with a minimum of toxic ingredients.

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5. Poor diet
Sugary foods weaken the immune system, says WebMD. To strengthen it, include a variety of fruits and vegetables into your diet that will provide many vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants needed to ward off disease.

6. Smoking
While environmental toxins harm your immune system, smoking can be devastating to it. Cigarette smoke contains more than 4,000 chemical compounds of which nearly 50 are known to cause cancer, says Prevention. Smoking is bad for the health of the smoker and anyone nearby who inhales the secondhand smoke.

7. Sedentary lifestyle
Not getting enough exercise is bad for your health and weakens the immune system. Holtorf Medical Group says important antibodies that destroy viruses are produced during exercise. Studies show that cells that attack bacteria in the body work more slowly in people who do not exercise.

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Your immune system protects you from infections, viruses, and chronic illness. Your lifestyle can play a major role in how well it works. Check this list of seven things that could be weakening your immune system.
immune system, busters, bad
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2016-07-17
Tuesday, 17 May 2016 02:07 PM
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