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    Immunity and Aging: How are they linked?

      |  Mar 29, 2023

    Our immune system plays a vital role in protecting the health of our bodies. In particular the immune system plays an important role in defending the body against foreign invaders (viruses and bacteria), clearing away defective cells, as well as facilitating the healing process.

    The health of our immune system is inextricably tied to how we age. There are two main reasons why:

    1. Our immune system function weakens as we age: As we get older, our bone marrow loses its ability to produce T and B cells - which are the key components of the immune system that orchestrate responses.

    2. Not only does our immune system become weaker as we get older, but it also becomes more dysfunctional. Specifically, the immune system will begin to activate itself when it shouldn’t, damaging healthy tissue in the process. This process is known as inflammation, and the chronic, slow burn inflammation that results from the aging process is known as “inflammaging”.

    Given these two facts, boosting our immune systems is one of the most important parts of reducing the impacts of aging. There are many ways to do this- I have highlighted several below:

    1. Vitamin D supplementation: Vitamin D has been shown to directly control the activity of our immune cells, and Vitamin D supplementation has been shown to reduce the risk of upper respiratory infections as well as inflammation.

    2. Vitamin C supplementation: Vitamin C enhances the barrier functions our body, as well as the activity of our immune cells, and can play an important role in both preventing and resolving infection. Vitamin C also plays a role in reducing inflammation.

    3. Zinc supplementation: Zinc plays an important role in activating T cells, which play a key role in battling viruses, and mediating on overall healthy immune system. Zinc has also been shown to prevent and reduce the severity of viral infections.

    4. Exercise/Diet: Exercise and diet have been shown to mitigate some of the dysfunctional impacts of aging on the immune system.

    5. Sleep: Having adequate high quality sleep has been shown to be important for promoting stem cells that produce the building blocks of our immune system.

    6. Contrast Therapy: Exposing your body to very hot and then very cold temperatures has been shown to have benefits on the immune system. The exact mechanisms are not clear, but in one study people who concluded their showers with over 1 minute of very cold water had fewer sick days.

    Taking the steps to maintain and boost your immune system can help you feel better as you age. At Modern Age, we offer many treatments and supplements like our Immunity IV Drip to keep your immune function in top shape.