The immune system defends your body against bacteria, viruses and other harmful invaders. At full strength, it is an efficient protector against infection and illness. But like all aspects of your health, it takes healthy lifestyle choices to keep your immune system in top shape. Three vital areas in protecting and bolstering immunity are nutrition, exercise and stress reduction.
Lunasin: Clinical studies continue to uncover the many benefits of this remarkable soy peptide. A recent study showed that lunasin boosts innate immunity by stimulating immune cell receptors. (See Dr. Carl Hastings’s message below for details.)
Antioxidants: Antioxidants are vitamins and minerals that remove free radicals from the bloodstream. Free radicals can damage DNA and suppress the body’s immune system. A few of the most important immunity-boosting antioxidants include vitamin C, vitamin E and beta carotene.
Zinc: A review in the Open Respiratory Medicine Journal concluded that supplementing with zinc may shorten the duration of the common cold by up to 40%.
Vitamin D: A study at the University of Copenhagen found that vitamin D is needed to trigger the immune system’s killer T cells and that a lack of vitamin D can render these cells inactive.
Probiotics: Fight the flu bug with these friendly bugs! In a Swedish study, a group of employees given a probiotic missed less work due to respiratory or gastrointestinal illness than did employees who didn’t receive the probiotic. Another study showed people taking a probiotic plus vitamins and minerals daily for three months had reduced frequency, duration and severity of cold symptoms.
A study in the British Journal of Sports Medicine found those who exercised the most were least likely to suffer from colds in the winter months. Researchers followed a group of 1,002 healthy adults aged 18 to 85 over a 12-week period during the autumn and winter seasons.
Each participant reported daily any symptom of respiratory illness they experienced (sneezes, coughs, fever, etc.). On average, they reported such symptoms for 13 days in the winter and 8 days in the autumn.
But those who exercised regularly were much less likely to develop a cold, and when they did, it was much less severe. The fittest 25% (those who exercised five or more days a week) had 43% fewer days with symptoms than those in the lowest 25% (one day or less of weekly exercise).
Don’t Stress Out
The negative effects of stress on the immune system have been well-documented. Stress impacts your susceptibility to infection and overall wellness in two important ways:
- Weakened Immune System: Chronic stress can raise cortisol levels, making us more vulnerable to colds and the flu, as well as more serious health problems.
- Unhealthy Choices: In stressful situations, we often fail to sleep enough, eat well or exercise, increasing the likelihood of illness.
Lunasin Boosts Immunity… and So Much More
In February, Reliv introduced our exclusive LunaRich® soy powder — a breakthrough ingredient that delivers five to ten times more lunasin than ordinary soy powders. At the time, we were astounded by the amount of research backing lunasin’s wide-ranging benefits, from reducing inflammation to lowering cholesterol. Our excitement has grown exponentially in the nine months since.
Study after study continues to uncover more health benefits of this amazing soy peptide. Because it works at the epigenetic level — at the very root of gene expression and cellular function — lunasin impacts multiple aspects of human health. One of the most recent lunasin studies demonstrated its effectiveness in strengthening the immune system.
Immune cells in your body contain receptors that are genetically primed to respond to germs and other environmental toxins and remove them. If these receptors are slow to respond in your immune cells, your body’s innate defenses do not function properly.
A study conducted at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis in 2012 showed that lunasin can affect this process. Results of the study demonstrated that lunasin works to stimulate immune cell receptors, thus boosting innate immunity — the body’s first line of defense against infections.
Lunasin-packed LunaRich soy powder can be found in several Reliv products including Reliv Now® and Reliv Now® for Kids, daily essential nutritional formulas that combine LunaRich with a host of other immune-boosting ingredients.
Stay tuned… more lunasin and LunaRich research coming soon!
To Your Health,
Dr. Carl W. Hastings, Reliv Vice Chairman and Chief Scientific Officer
Thank you Dr. Carl for another great article!