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“Ways to Hurt Your Immune System”

Here is the mantra for a healthy lifestyle: Eat lots of fruits and vegetables, get regular exercise, maintain a healthy weight, don’t smoke, limit drinking, and wash your hands often to avoid infection. Healthy living is a good way to support your immune system, and that includes avoiding certain habits that can dampen your immune function. Here are five factors that might be harming your immune system, according to studies and health experts. 1) Day-to-Day Stress. According to an article published in Stress Challenges and Immunity In Space, decades of research have linked psychological stress to immune system outcomes, including inflammatory processes, wound healing, and responses to infections and other immune system challenges. Stress disrupts the interplay between the central nervous system, endocrine system, and immune system, which leads to dysregulation of the latter. Additionally, chronic stress can deregulate immune responses, and thereby induce inflammation and suppress the function of immuno-protective cells. 2) Not Getting Enough Sleep. According to the Mayo Clinic, a lack of sleep can affect how quickly you become ill and how soon you recover. When you don’t get enough sleep, the production of these cytokine proteins is disrupted, and levels of infection-fighting antibodies and cells also decrease. Adults should be getting 7-8 hours of sleep a night, while teens should be getting 9-10 hours, and children may need 10 or more hours.  Editor’s Note:  See the article for the other 3 ways !

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