Low Immune FunctionLow Immune Function

By Dr. Mao Shing Ni, Ph.D., D.O.M., L.Ac.

What is Low Immune Function?

There are many different pathogens and biological threats that invade the human body, and the immune system is responsible for protecting the body against these invaders. The immune system functions like an anatomical army. However, like an army, it can become fatigued and burnt out from waging constant battle against the many invaders that accompany stress, poor nutrition, environmental toxins, and a sedentary lifestyle. When the system becomes fatigued, it may lose its ability to distinguish between the body and a foreign invader and then begins attacking the body’s tissues and organs; it also may become too weak to properly respond to the invaders’ attacks. Regardless, a deficient immune system can lead to a variety of diseases and conditions.

How can I treat Low Immune Function?

In traditional Chinese medicine, the immune system relies on the kidney network, the digestive system, the lungs, and the liver, and as such it is necessary for all of these organs to work in unison for optimal immunity. It is therefore important to eat foods that boost the immune system, including vegetables like Brussels sprouts and broccoli, fruits such as blueberries and raspberries, grains such as brown rice and oats, root vegetables such as carrots and yams, mushrooms such as shiitake and reishi, and herbs and spices such as oregano, peppermint, ginger, and turmeric. Other remedies include 20 to 30 minutes of sunbathing before 10 a.m. and after 3 p.m., dry brushing the body on a daily basis, and practicing 30 minutes of daily cardiovascular exercise, combined with some form of stretching or flexibility training.

What should I avoid in my lifestyle for Low Immune Function?

It is important to avoid all forms of processed sugars and sugar additives found in sodas, sweetened juices, and other high-sugar substances. Other things to avoid include deep-fried and fatty foods, cold and raw foods, dairy products, coffee, alcohol, smoking, drug use, stress, and emotional turmoil.

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