Our entire body, and in particular the immune system, knows the best. I completely appreciate this is a significant statement, particularly when the immune system appears to be “broken”, not functioning according to its natural role and attacks ourselves.
However, I still love my immune system and its ability to fight external pathogens and it should be taken great care of and strengthened against infectious agents.
Both the whole body and the immune system thrives and performs magnificently in a “alkalinised-mode” (that is, in other words, less acid). This is because every single cell, hence the tissues, organs, systems and entire body, communicates and operates perfectly at a pH range level of 7.35 and 7.45; whereas, the occurrence of symptoms and the presence of diseases is linked to the increase or decrease in the acid and alkaline level in the body.
Acid-forming foods such as, animal products and by-products, processed or refined food and sugar can seriously detriment the entire human system by compromising cellular integrity.
Instead, introducing alkalinizing foods as fresh vegetables (above all cruciferous such as, broccoli and cauliflower as well as dark leafy greens such as, spinach) and also mushrooms, pulses, garlic, ginger and chilies helps to maintain a balanced immune system ready to fight cell degeneration caused by acid build-ups.
Moreover, keeping hydrated is also key because drinking water before feeling thirsty helps the body to wash out acids and digest food properly, primarily by keeping a high blood volume (that can easily reach vital organs such as the brain and all the cells) and a flowing lymphatic system, vital component of the immune defence.
It’s also interesting to notice that our immune system is constantly bombarded with chemicals from within, for example free radicals (namely, Reactive Oxygen Species or ROS) generated by daily metabolic processes, and external factors such as, smoking, air pollutants and radiations. These factors all cause oxidation or oxidative stress in the cells that is the leading cause of cellular damages which are involved in the majority of diseases, from infections to autoimmune diseases to cancer.
The mentioned oxidation process happens regardless of what we eat 3 to 5 times per day. Therefore, it is essential, if not imperative, to boost the immune system and help it fight or detoxify by nourishing the body, introducing nutrient-dense antioxidant foods. Hereby, I’m not talking only about Goji berries and kidney beans (superfoods in all fairness) but also other berries, spices and herbs, nuts and dark chocolate.
Moreover, it is fairly new the concept of gastrointestinal tract (GUT) or intestine as a new discovered immune system. And it make sense when thinking of our alimentary canal as an enormous system of aggregate microorganisms which includes around 100 trillion bacteria (also known as “microbiota”), nearly 10 times the number of human cells, that constantly protect our intestinal tracts by fighting against foreign substances without harming the host (a cohabiting process named “commensalism”). Indeed, this bacteria population changes as we change our food intake. It has been shown that the consumption of animal substances produces by-products (such as, hydrogen sulphide and Trimethylamine) that are strictly associated with inflammatory bowel disease, heart disease and stroke. On the other hand, butyrate and sulphurophane are substances produced by intestinal bacteria that control inflammation and play a key role in breast and prostate cancer as well as T-cell mediated immune diseases.
The latter substances are produced by our intestinal microorganisms only when “exposed” to a high-fiber, whole-plant based diet. As mentioned, sulphurophane is produced by GUT bacteria and is also a phytochemical, a biologically active substance naturally found in cruciferous such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale and bok choi.
I do hope this was easy to digest (pun intended!)
Signing off now.