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The Immune System at a Glance Part I

Updated on August 9, 2011

Stress is a big factor

The immune systems is a network of cells.


To completely understand how the human body stays well and how it gets sick, one must first understand the immune system and how it does its job of keeping us healthy. Briefly, the immune system is a network of cells and organs that protects the body from the continuous direct attack of bacteria, parasites, viruses, microbes and toxins, that would otherwise cause the human body serious infection and illness.

The immune system is an amazing system of many different components working together with the end goal of fighting off every little mishap, from a scrape or cut, to the many bacteria and viruses mentioned above. The immune system protects us 24/7 from all the invaders trying to take over our body. It does this amazing function and it does it usually unnoticed.

We only notice something wrong when the immune system is weakened. Some of the more common signs of a weakened immune system would be slow wound healing, prolonged infection, repeated infection, inflammation, allergic reaction, fatigue, an overgrowth of organisms, such as oral thrush, candidiasis or vaginal yeast infection.

One of the simplest forms of a weakened immune system is the outbreak of cold sores or the common fever blisters (herpes simplex virus). Another, it has been estimated that healthy adults in our western society have an average of two colds a year. So, if you find yourself having significantly more colds than that, its likely you are having a problem with your immune system.

An easy way to understand the function of the immune system is, the job of the immune system is to tag and identify everything that belong to our body. On the other hand, its job is also to tag and identify everything that doesn't belong to our body and destroy all that doesn't belong ...simple as that!

See, in a healthy body, the immune system, this system of check and balance works very well to maintain health and destroy the invaders that don't belong. However, when the immune system is weakened, it becomes unable to keep up with the task of destroying the invading bacteria, viruses, and toxins that are constantly trying to invade the body. Then, infection and illness become more frequent and there is a greater chance of health problems ranging from the minor fever blisters to cancer.

Now think about this because it's very clear and important. The conditions causing the weakened immune system are cumulative. That is, it doesn't just happen over night. In most cases, what is causing the weakened immune system, has been going on for long time... either by our own choice, or by the choice of others that we allow to make for us. Stop, read that last statement again.

Because in most cases, whether you believe it or not, the person's individual "life style habits" are the major causes of the weakened immune system.

You'll be surprised what those major "lifestyle habits" are.... find out next week in Part II

Please share with others any comments about your lifestyle habits that have affected your health.


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    • gjcody profile image

      gjcody 9 years ago

      newcapo ..Building our immune system can never be taken lightly ..especially in these times. We need to take charge of our health and this is the first place to start!

      Thank you for stopping by again best to your health!

    • profile image

      newcapo 9 years ago

      Thanks for posting such an informative hub-- will go on to read the others in this series. This is knowledge we all can use. Great hub!

    • gjcody profile image

      gjcody 9 years ago

      cgull8m ..Oh yes, you are right and I realize it totally. Eash of us are raised in an environment that lend itself to doing what our family before us has done and believe it is is not always the right things. Now some of us have broken the lifestyle and reached and stretched ...stepped out of "the box." It is very hard.

      I remember my mother saying when I told her she needed to stop the white flour. She said, "but I was raised on bread." I then told her it was probably not white flour. She is 86 years old. It has been a hard road but we did get somewhere. Parents are hard to raise.

      I want to thank you for stopping by and please come by again. I enjoy your point of view. My best to you and your health!

    • cgull8m profile image

      cgull8m 9 years ago from North Carolina

      Because in most cases, whether you believe it or not, the person's individual "life style habits" are the major causes of the weakened immune system." Very true, one person told me it is just like the saying "What we sow, we reap" same is applicable for human body. No point in blaming other things when we should blame ourselves for the food habits.

    • gjcody profile image

      gjcody 9 years ago

      Oberbeckling ...glad to see you again. You are the type of person that make this fun. I picture you with your bag of chips and salsa and then losing your appetite :-)))) ...I have been there and done that. But the salsa is okay ...maybe not the bag of chips. But yes, you can turn your face to junk food when you really get the picture what it is doing to you. (What they are doing to you!)

      And believe me business partner always has someone behind following him with a jelly donut. He calls it "the guy on his left shoulder talking to the guy on his right shoulder". He would give anything to munch on one of them right now. Probably when he reads this he will drool on his computer. But he will pass. It is tough. But anything worth having is worth doing and fighting for....I think you know that at this point in your life. I look at it as my personal fight against the evil.

      Hey ...oberbeckling ..good chatting ...stop back to read the part III ...It gets better. Take care and again hope all is good on your end. I know things have been tough ...but you sound like a fighter.......keep fighting!!

      My best to you and your health!

    • profile image

      oberbreckling 9 years ago

      Hi gj do you mean this bag of chips and this salsa lol that Im eating I read the hub immune system ll first and went out and grabbed chips and salsa then read this one and now I will put them away I keep picturing myself running with a blood pressure checker in one hand and a weight scale in the other hand and the evil junk food man behind me tempting me with a jelly doughnut are we ever gonna be able to turn the cheek on junk food ya know Im havin alot of fun on your hubs I should of came and visited along time ago ~cool~cya

    • gjcody profile image

      gjcody 9 years ago

      Shadebreath... thanks for reading ...I know how you feel my partner ususally says ...."been there and done that!" Just remember, it is easier to do the "not so good things" and harder to do what is best for you. I found this business is a very interesting one. When you get to my age ... (won't tell) will realize how important it is who brews the beer and what the ingredients are ...rather than just the beer itself. As I've said ...know your supplier!

      Until the next time best to your health and as they say "here's to you!"

    • Shadesbreath profile image

      Shadesbreath 9 years ago from California

      Good start to what is going to be very good info on the immune system. I'll be honest, I'm a strong supporter of those fine people who make their living brewing beer and not a big fan of that whole dreadful excercise thing. Frankly, I'm terrified what portents part two might hold for me. Perhaps a disclaimer at the top if the news is going to be too painful to my highly developed sense of sloth. Otherwise, I look forward to what you have to say.

    • gjcody profile image

      gjcody 9 years ago

      Chaser ...just make sure you get your sleep ...I don't think any of us are doing much of this lately. And how about this flooding really does give the people stress. Now how can we keep healthy when things are out of our control. I am not sure ....we need to ban together and help each other.

    • chaser4 profile image

      chaser4 9 years ago

      Hey gjcody....good to see you back from Ohio. And thanks for the tips on the immune system. I'll be waiting for Part II as I can relate to a lot of what you wrote about. I hope my lifestyle isn't to far off the mark.

      Interesting hub. Keep it up.