Do you “catch a cold”? Or do you “succumb to it”? The difference between a few sneezes and sniffles over a day or two as you shrug off that lurgy, and a full-blown week in bed is… a healthy immune system.
We have long known about the link between Chiropractic care and a strong immune system and now, evidence is increasingly proving that link. Your nervous system controls your immune system and they communicate through chemical messages. When we are ill, the nervous system naturally tries to ward off disease and infection by stimulating the immune response.
The Autonomic is the biggest part of your nervous system. It has two sub-sections which prioritise where you spend your energy- on getting up and about or on fighting internal stresses such as colds and flu’s.
These sections connect directly with immune tissues such as the spleen, lymph nodes and bone marrow which co-ordinate to fight infection. Nerve interference can alter this response and limit your ability to fight infection.
Chiropractic care focuses on detecting and removing nerve interference, allowing the body to heal naturally:
- It has been shown that Chiropractic enhances your immunity by significantly increasing the function and activity of certain white blood cells (T cells)- which fight off infection.
- It can also affect your immune organs themselves, improving their output potential. This change has been shown to occur 20 minutes after a chiropractic adjustment and still remains significant 2 hours later.
- Studies on immune-compromised (HIV positive) patients receiving Chiropractic over a 6-month period showed a 48% increase in CD4 cells (a type of T Cell), which indicate immune function.
- In another study, people who received regular Chiropractic care over a five-year period had a 200% greater immune strength than those who had not received care. Additionally the Chiropractic group showed a 400% greater immune strength than people with people who went on to suffer other serious diseases.
- Chiropractic care, when focused on reducing stress, can reduce cortisol levels. Cortisol is the stress hormone which shuts down your immune system- so less stress means a stronger immune response.
Five steps to staying well in Winter:
1. Get regular Chiropractic adjustments – ESPECIALLY when you are feeling under the weather.
2. Ensure you get adequate sleep (7-8 hours per night) – this is when your body repairs and re-energises itself for the next day.
3. Exercise regularly, but not too hard. Rest only when a cold affects your throat or lungs. A runny nose should not stop you staying fit – just shorten your workouts and increase your rest and recovery.
4. Eat as well as you can! Is it not crazy that we drink too much alcohol and eat too many sweets – just when we need more fresh food and less sugar. We recommend you supplement with a multivitamin and occasional vitamin C. If under more stress than usual, then supplements such as Echinacea can be added.
5. Get as much sun or daylight as possible. Go out for a lunchtime walk. The lack of daylight interrupts our sleep patterns, and low sunlight means we get less Vitamin D. If necessary use a blue-light and supplement with vitamin D.
If you do start so feel under the weather, here’s a useful recipe to give you a boost and get you feeling better again: Honey Lemon Ginger Turmeric Cold Killer
Remember that suffering colds and flus throughout the winter need not be “normal”… Some of us who are most “in the line of fire” fight off everything with minimal disruption. What is important is how strong your immune system is.