The best proverb in regard to well being is ‘Health is wealth’, which implicitly connotes health is worthier than wealth and indirectly means wealth cannot always buy good health. Even a wealthiest person can enjoy it only if there is good health and well being. Therefore it is important for a contented life to maintain relatively healthier body and mind rather than having enormous wealth but with ill health all the time. Though medical advancement in diagnosis and successful treatment of major life threatening diseases has increased tremendously there is upsurge of new types of diseases. The primary reason for uprising new types of disease is attributed to changing food habits, ingredients, lifestyles, occupational stresses that seriously affect the immune system. Immune system helps our body, protecting from threats posed by pathogenic germs and therefore strengthening the system will prolong one’s lifespan.
There are two types of immune system in our body; one that is inherent in our body is called innate immune system, the fundamental factor in fighting the germs. The other is gained through our living called acquired immune system that is grown over a period of time through our way of life, environment and food habits. While the innate immune system is passed on to us biologically the acquired immune system could be enhanced through making amendments by way of switching over to healthy habits and lifestyles.
Sleep is essential
Restful and adequate sleep habits would facilitate metabolism in our body. Sleeplessness and stressful lifestyle increase the cortisol hormone in our body that affects the immune system thereby making our body prone to diseases. Therefore ensure that work and life related stresses are avoided and you get adequate and deep sleep every day.
Drink adequate water
Water primarily helps the body maintain its homeostasis and support in metabolism. It cleanses the body and facilitates excretion of toxins and other unwanted accumulation from the body. Lack of water will lead to dehydration that indirectly affects the immune system giving way for ill health.
Eat milk products
There are plenty of probiotics, a collection of favorable bacteria, in milk products, especially in curd and yoghurts. They enhance the secretion of immunoglobulin, a group of protein strengthening the immune system directly. These proteins available in milk fight against infections and disease causing pathogens, thereby keeping our body healthy.
Eat more vegetables
Vegetables provide vitamins and minerals to our body and therefore they should be part of our food table every day without fail. Dark colored vegetables, such as beetroot, carrot, brinjal, capsicum, and other vegetables like cabbage, and protein rich beans varieties contain more biologically active natural compounds that help our body gain more immunity.
Include green leaves
Take green leafy vegetables at least twice a week. Lettuces, spinach and cruciferous leafy vegetables also contain more minerals, essential micronutrients such as calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc and other vitamins that help our body improve the immune system and thereby keep our body fit.
Therapeutically effective Garlic
In Ayurvedic medicine, garlic is used to cure disease conditions starting from headache to even cancer. It holds an anti-infective and anti-microbial property that fights against any kind of bacterial and viral infections. It also has anti-cholesterolemic property as well. Therefore it is highly recommended to be included in our daily food preparations without fail.
Turmeric is a natural disinfectant, having the ability to kill germs. It enhances the immune system, purifies circulatory system and therefore protects against fever, cold and cough.
One of the essential micronutrients, selenium is found aplenty in onion and it triggers the essential factors that strengthen the immune system in our body. An active ingredient, allicin prevents our body from accumulating bacterial, fungal and other toxins and fights against cancerous tumors.
Almond nuts contain more amount of manganese and vitamin E that help our body generate more while blood cells to strengthen our immune system, thereby gaining more resistance towards infectious diseases.
Green tea contains anti-oxidants like catechins that scavenge free radicals in the body thereby helping our immune system not getting infected. These anti-oxidants prevent us from heart diseases and cancer causing agents. But restrict to a few glasses a day as excesses are always unhealthy.
Cigarette contains tobacco that destroys anti-oxidants in our body thereby allowing our body to conditions prone for diseases. It destroys the alveolar tissues in the lungs, blocking numerous microscopic air circulating holes thereby leading to respiratory diseases, lung cirrhosis and chronic obstructive lung diseases by indirectly damaging our immune system. Any form of tobacco has grievous effect to our well being.
Don’t drink alcohol
Excessive alcohol intake is dangerous to our health. Alcohol, having zero energy, prevents our body to uptake vitamins and essential minerals thereby damaging overall strength and stability of our body. It also destroys white blood cells that help us fight against any type of infectious pathogens by disintegrating our immune system. Like tobacco any form of alcohol has gravest consequence to our well being.
(This article originally written in Tamil and appeared in vikatan.com is now reproduced in English by Amalan Stanley)