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Our Miraculous Immune System

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The human body has been created with an extremely efficient, self-organising, immune system that may be either compromised or optimised by the choices we make in lifestyle, dietary habits, and nutritional status.  The world around us has all the foods, nutrients and elements required to thrive. Under conditions of stress, emotional, physical or mental, the human body’s innate protective mechanisms lose their efficiency and capacity to neutralise invading pathogens.

When the body encounters stress, toxins and pathogens in excess, it develops a rationing response to shortages of micronutrients (vitamins and minerals). The body is forced to prioritise essential survival mechanisms. Proteins needed for long-term health, including those that protect DNA lose out, become disabled and accelerate ageing diseases. This is the now-famous ‘Triage’ theory developed by Dr Bruce Ames. In these conditions, we no longer thrive and find it difficult to survive. The current pandemic of COVID-19 highlights that those with underlying health conditions no longer have the resources to fight the virus effectively. 

The best form of defence is attack, and at the point of early disease progression, you must go to war with the virus unleashing the power of your immune system. It’s never been more important to develop health strategies that help our communities and us not only survive, but thrive. The Hippocrates Institute of Health, calls our immune system a “Miracle of creation” in that it’s designed to fight infection and defend against disease.

Flat lay of Immune boosting remedy, immunity boosting foods

Our immune system is built by exposure to antigens, including viruses and bacteria. When you’re a little child crawling on the ground and putting things in your mouth virus and bacteria, come in, and the body forms an antigen-antibody complex that builds our immune system. As we grow, the microbiota shapes our immune system’s development, and the immune system shapes the composition of the microbiota. Our immune system has co-evolved along with diverse gut flora to create defences against pathogens and develop a tolerance for beneficial microbes. Consequently, the immune system and the gut microbiota developed a  relationship, regulating one another and co-operating to support each other. This interaction’s importance is clearly highlighted by the fact that 70–80% of the body’s immune cells are found in the gut.

In physiological terms, there are two distinct arms of the human immune system. The INNATE arm of our Immune System is our first line of defence. It comprises physical and chemical barriers, immune cells and blood proteins that become operative by mediating inflammation at the site of a wound or immediate contact with an invading pathogen. This generates “non-specific” defences. 

The adaptive immune system is responsible for the more complex immune responses that develop when innate immunity is insufficient to manage a threat. Our Immune System’s ADAPTIVE arm is designed to recognise pathogens who have previously invaded the human host and respond to the attack by rapidly developing appropriate antibodies, which can neutralise the second attack on the host, and thereby afford the host protection against the threats of the returning pathogen. For this reason, prior exposure to a pathogen affords the host protective capabilities against subsequent attacks by the same pathogen. Adaptive immunity is mediated by cells called lymphocytes, including B cells and T cells.

Our knowledge of Covid-19  is changing every day as the virus itself mutates. With no drugs or vaccines currently approved, many new therapeutics are emerging, and potential treatments are being trialled on the front lines. This is a disease we have no prior experience with and in the absence of a cure, it’s testing all conventional medical paradigms. In New York doctors have been prescribing critically ill coronavirus patients large doses of vitamin C to stop inflammation and dampen the cytokine storm.

The medical team at Northwell Health immediately gave patients 1500mg of Vitamin C with the same amount, re-administered 3-4 times a day.  Each dose represents over 16 times the recommended allowance by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), which is 90mg for men and 80mg for women. Vitamin C is also being trialled in China, where COVID-19 originated. The results of a study at Wuhan University – where 140 patients were given large dose amounts of the antioxidant intravenously to establish if it could improve outcomes will only be completed in September. 

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