Our immune system responds to many triggers, an infection for example, will fire up a cascade of responses in our body – we explain the three stages of our immune system in a previous blog (read here).
Our immune system has 3 “Acts” and we can improve or “boost” each Act as we describe below.
- Physical defence. This is the first act of immunity and incorporates the physical barriers to invasion by pathogen, like our skin and our mouth. Ensuring we are in optimal physical fitness (for our age and stage) will support the health of our skin and our mouth, supporting our overall immunity. Oral health can be enhanced by regular visits to the dentist and also by taking oral probiotics, like BlisK12 and BlisM18 – more on how they act in the next stage.
- Innate Immunity. This is where our body’s system attacks invaders as they enter the body in an initially non-specific way which then triggers Act 3 of immunity. New international research shows that BlisK12 oral probiotics actually stimulate the production of two critical immunity initiating compounds, interferon gamma (read more here) and immunoglobulin A:
- Interferon gamma acts by activating other immune cells to boost the body’s immune response, which can help to kill invading pathogens and prevent further infection.
- Immunoglobulin A is an antibody that is found in the mucous membranes of the body, including the mouth, nose, throat, and digestive tract. Its main function is to prevent pathogens from attaching to the body's mucosal surfaces. By doing this it renders pathogens neutral or ineffective before they can enter the body. This was shown to be very effective in boosting the immunity of young elite athletes in a recent scientific publication (read more here)
- Adaptive immunity. This is a more gradual process than the rapid innate immune system. In adaptive immunity, white blood cells, called lymphocytes (T and B cells), recognise pathogens and target them specifically. The adaptive immune response has “memory cells” which remember the antigens we produced in Act 2 and respond to them. We can enhance our adaptive immunity with tools such as vaccines which essentially short-cut the path to develop “memory cells” which recognise invaders.
If you want to read or understand more about boosting your immunity this winter, please let us know, we can share the new published research as well as an excellent white paper from Blis Technologies, who provide us with the BlisK12 and BlisM18 we use in our EXhale Lung Health and Immunity lozenges (pictured).
We are also undertaking our own research to further understand and enhance the anti-inflammatory response and anti-pathogen affects of the other bioactives, quercetin, zinc and anthocyanins, we have in our EXhale Lung Health and Immunity lozenges, which we will share with you as soon as we can.