Health & Safety

August 3, 2012

Make immune system healthy, strong

by Airman 1st Class Grace Lee
56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

The body’s immune system has many jobs including fighting against bacteria, parasites and fungi. It is also essential in keeping the body healthy from infection.

The immune system is made up of a network of cells, tissues and organs that together prevent and defend against attacks to the body, according to Rachel Perkins-Garner, 56th Medical Group registered nurse.

“The attackers are called ‘foreign invaders;’ the most common being microbes, tiny organisms such as bacteria, parasites and fungi,” she said. “Our body is the ideal environment for many microbes, but it also has a defense system — the immune system.”

The primary function of the immune system is to keep out anything potentially harmful, and if invaded, the immune system will seek out the microbes and viruses to destroy them, Perkins-Garner said.

“The immune system is extremely complex,” she said. “It can recognize and recall millions of different invaders and can produce secretions (antibodies/cells) to match up and destroy the majority of these microbes and viruses.”

Perkins-Garner relates how the immune system works to how bees work.

“Billions of cells, which are organized into sets and subsets, swarm like bees around a hive and pass information back and forth in response to a threat such as an infection,” she said. “When the immune system detects a foreign cell or organism they initiate an attack.”

Having a strong immune system keeps the body healthy, but a weak immune system can compromise the body’s ability to fight back.

“A poor or weak immune system leaves the body susceptible to infection,” she said. “Think of a cancer patient who is receiving chemotherapy; even a simple trip to the store can expose them to hundreds of foreign organisms. This exposure is enough to enter the body, which may overwhelm the immune system and lead to an infection. If the immune system is functioning normally, it will easily destroy the virus or microbe.”

While a weak immune system can be detrimental to health, according to the Harvard Medical School website, www.health.harvard.edu, there are things one can do to help keep the immune system strong and healthy.

 

Harvard Health Publications recommends people who want to maintain a healthy immune system:

  • Avoid smoking
  • Eat a diet high in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains and low in saturated fat.
  • Exercise regularly
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Control blood pressure
  • Avoid alcohol or drink in moderation
  • Get adequate sleep
  • Take steps to avoid infection, such as washing hands frequently and cooking meats thoroughly
  • Get regular medical screening tests according to age and risk category



All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Airman 1st Class James Hensley

Luke cuts ribbon on F-35 Academic Training Center

Airman 1st Class James Hensley Gen. Robin Rand, Air Education and Training Command commander, cuts the ceremonial ribbon Oct. 9 marking the completion of the academic training center building at Luke Air Force Base. The buildin...
 
 
Forino_J

U.S., Singapore partnership standout

Lt. Col. John Forino Aug. 9 marked the 49th anniversary of Singapore’s independence. The 425th Fighter Squadron is an operational squadron comprised of elite U.S. Air Force and Republic of Singapore air force personnel design...
 
 
shirts-graphicbw

‘Guts’ required to enforce standards

A few years ago, a fellow senior NCO requested I talk to her subordinate about her appearance, specifically pertaining to her hair. Naturally, I asked about what the issue was and why she couldn’t have a discussion with her o...
 

 
141008-F-HT977-008

Airmen get new ‘Community Commons’

Renovations on Bldg. 700, which houses the Health and Wellness Center, will take place April 2015 through spring 2016 at Luke Air Force Base. Subway and the barbershop will remain open during construction. Other amenities, such...
 
 

News Briefs October 17, 2014

Keep good mental health Calling all Airmen! Sleep disturbances such as insomnia and nightmares can affect people personally and professionally. Reaching out to a medical provider is a step in the right direction to good health. Courtesy of the 56th Medical Group Haunted house The 56th Mission Support Group is featuring Operation: Haunted Block House...
 
 

THUNDERBOLT OF THE WEEK

Jessica Behrens 56th Medical Support Squadron Pharmacist Hometown: Seneca, Missouri Years in service: Three Family: Husband, Chris; daughter, Katelyn, 2; son, Levi, 5 months Education: Bachelor’s degree from University of Arkansas and doctor of pharmacy from Creighton University, Omaha, Nebraska Previous assignments: Pensacola Naval Air Station, Florida; Vance Air Force Base, Oklahoma; Spring...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin