How to strengthen the immune system: scientists have discovered a quick method

Yulia PoteriankoLife
Moderately intense physical exercises have proven effective against colds

In the cold season, commonly referred to as the flu season, the question of how to strengthen the immune system becomes especially pressing. However, many popular methods lack scientific support or proven effectiveness. Yet, there is a scientifically validated way to boost the body's defenses.

Professor David Nieman of Appalachian State University (USA) discussed this in an article for Medicine & Science. He reviewed several studies and concluded that engaging in moderate daily exercise for 30 minutes significantly reduces the risk of contracting an upper respiratory tract infection, such as a cold.

The role of hormones

One reason why moderate exercise is beneficial lies in the production of hormones like adrenaline and norepinephrine during physical activity. These hormones expedite the release and effectiveness of immune response cells, aiding in the detection and destruction of cold pathogens in the body.

Moreover, increased blood flow during exercise efficiently distributes immune cells throughout the body. Therefore, daily exercise not only guards against colds but also promotes overall health.

Defense mechanism of exercise

Any form of physical activity constitutes a form of stress for the body. Moderate exercise, however, doesn't deplete its strength but rather trains it. The body responds to this stress by releasing adrenaline and norepinephrine, assisting in coping with the stress.

Regular exercise has been shown to increase the production of killer cells, a type of T-lymphocyte responsible for destroying infected cells. While it's challenging to definitively say they impact the strength of the immune system, this protective function is certainly activated during exercise.

Optimal exercise regimen

According to Nieman's findings, the optimal exercise regimen is five sessions per week, each lasting 30 minutes. The exercises should be performed at a moderate pace, avoiding overloading the body. There is evidence suggesting that very intense training and overtraining may increase the risk of catching a cold.

Regular walking also proves beneficial. A brisk walking pace for five sessions a week, lasting 40-45 minutes each, significantly reduces the risk of infection. Moreover, if a person does get sick, the duration of cold symptoms decreases from 10-12 days to 5-6 days.

Combining approaches is also effective. Nieman's research indicates that a combination of shorter exercise and walking yields similarly positive effects. For instance, 20 minutes of exercise combined with 20 minutes of walking proved effective.

Earlier, OBOZREVATEL published recipes for vitamin drinks that will also help your immunity.

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