If you are going to set out on a quest for a good nights sleep and more than one hopefully then you need to pay attention to the health of your immune system. When you are sick and your immune system has failed to protect you then it can be a big contributor to you not being able to sleep. In the sense that when you had the flu or a cold you don’t rest properly. However, in order for your immune system to stay healthy you need to be getting your rest. Now this is a catch 22. So if you aren’t sick right now then its prime time to first work on knowing how to keep you immune system happy and healthy and then start tackling your sleep problem
So first of all what is your immune system? We aren’t going to go into extensive detail here, but we have included and excerpt that explains it really well, so you may want to check out the entire article.
“Your Immune System
…The immune system is action and reaction. It has an intelligence of its own, though primitive, working like a mouse in a Skinner Box: the product of stimulus and response. For example, if a microscopic piece of an organ gets into the blood stream either through disease or by injury, the immune system will respond to it as if it were a foreign body, and having done so, the immune system is now trained to attack the original organ. The suppressor T-cells have to stop this attack or we have the beginning of an autoimmune response (lupus is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system actually attacks the person’s own body).
When referring to the immune system’s physical parts, we call the collection of these parts the lymphatic system, though the entire immune system, on a molecular level, goes much further, for even the tiniest cell in our bodies can create chemicals to aid in the defense of the entire system.
The lymphatic system consists of two parts, the primary and secondary organs. Top
Primary Organs: thymus gland (located beneath the breast bone and functioning at its peak during adolescence) and the bone marrow (producing specialized lymphocytes—T-cells and B-cells and dispatching them through the lymph vessels to the secondary organs.
Secondary Organs: the lymph nodes, the spleen, tonsils, Peyer’s patches in the small intestines, the liver, and the appendix to name a few. These are the locations where the molecular parts of the immune system gather in readiness to do battle with germs, viruses, and allergens (those things causing allergic responses). Top
The thymus gland is the central organ in the development of immune power. Within its cortex, the bone marrow lymphocytes mature into T-cells helped by thymosin, a hormone secreted by the thymus gland.
The main job of bone marrow is to produce blood cells, both red and white (leukocytes and lymphocytes). It is the soft tissue located in the cavities of the bones. It is the source of stem cells which differentiate (change into) leukocytes and lymphocytes.
To sum up things so far: the bone marrow creates the stem cells which become the cells of the immune system. From the bone marrow lymphocytes are sent to the thymus gland to mature and are then stored in the secondary organs of the lymph system and in the blood stream. The bone marrow also sends leukocytes into the blood stream on sentry duty. Everything stands in a “combat ready” state.
Now let’s look at the cellular components of the system. There are two major cell type of immune system cells: phagocytes and lymphocytes. As you can guess, lymphocytes have something to do with the lymph system. They are small white cells found in lymphoid tissues (the secondary organs of the lymph system) and present also in the blood. They get to the blood stream from the lymph nodes which are small pea sized organs distributed throughout the body. The lymph nodes trap antigens (substances that trigger an immune response) and filter them out of the lymph fluid. The lymph fluid is actually tissue fluids that have been collected from throughout the body for cleaning, and then are returned to the blood stream via lymphatic vessels…continue reading…
So now you have a starting idea of at least some of your body parts that make up the immune system what can you do to keep it healthy? Here is a short list…but you really need to check out other ways that are known to be immune boosters. We will try and add more ways here as over the coming weeks.
Get a handle on your stress level. Stress is a killer and you need to learn ways to get it under control. You may want to consider meditation or yoga or imagery.
Exercise. Good exercises gets the bloods flowing and stimulates your immune system.
Eat garlic. If you think this is an old wive’s tale you are mistaken. There are some pretty potent compounds in garlic but the key is eating it within one of smashing the bud.You need to crush it and add it to your salad or vegetable juice. Plus it must be fresh garlic.
Lay off the sugar. Sugar can actually inhibit your immune system from operating at its best. Also look for the hidden sugars in foods that you think there wouldn’t possibly be any.