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How Strong Is Your Immune System?
Did you know that on a daily basis, your body is exposed to countless pathogens that could result in your acquisition of an illness? The reason you’re not sick every day of your life has to do with your immune system. When it’s in good repair, it can rebuff the advances of such illnesses with ease. And this it does very effectively. It may not be possible to effectively enumerate how many pathogens your body fights off on a daily basis; but it’s got to be very high. There’s a threshold at which your immune system can no longer ward off the attack, and when that threshold is reached, you become ill. So for those that have a weakened immune system, this threshold is naturally going to be much smaller.
Who Has Weak Immune Systems?
Those most susceptible to illness fall into three categories:
- The Young
- The Old
- The Poor
Infants and newborns are still developing their immune systems. This process usually reaches a maturation point by the time a child is five years of age or more. The CDC recommends vaccinations at six months for the flu; though many feel that’s too excessive, and doesn’t represent the development of all young children. Regardless, until immune systems have properly developed in youth, said youth are more susceptible to illness. There is a point where the script flips, however. Once a child’s immune system has come into its own, that child actually has a slightly stronger immune system than most adults. This is because such a young person hasn’t had the time to destroy their body with drugs, alcohol, sensual addictions, depression, and injury; meaning the immune system has a “full charge”.
Older individuals suffer from the rigors of life. Between addictions, mistakes, processed and artificial foods, drug use, alcohol abuse, poor choices in sexual partners, injury, mental disorders, and bouts of poverty, their immune system is hanging on by a thread as death looms near.
The young and the old can be well-off, or poor. But poverty is going to increase conditions which stress the immune system; meaning those with decreased means are at higher risk of catching the flu.
Primarily, that which weakens the immune system is stress. Stress from biological invasion, injury, or mental depression can all take away from your body’s ability to ward off constantly attacking pathogens.
At the end of your DNA is something called telomerase. Think of it like the tape at the end of a shoestring. Telomerase keeps everything corded and functional. Stress wears down that telomerase, and so the shoestring doesn’t work so well as it once did. It gets stepped on and muddy, and eventually starts to unravel. This is an analogy of the aging process. The key here is avoiding stressful situations if at all possible. Not all stressful situations, though – there is such a thing as good stress. Just like pushing the tape together on your shoestring helps it retain shape and functionality, things like working out, meeting deadlines, and following through on projects put you in a good mental state, which helps you eat and live more healthy, and so strengthens your body’s immune system. Bad stress comes from addiction, emotional letdown/outbursts, and injury–all of which abound among impoverished communities.
Lastly, large groups of people that are extremely diverse carry with them large quotients of diverse pathogens; so those who work in public office have additional stress leveled at their immune system, which increases their likelihood of acquiring influenza. Healthy food and hand sanitizer are definitely to be recommended here.