Exercise and Your Immune System

Physical activity lowers your chances of developing heart disease and has several other benefits. There are some theories, that exercise can boost your immune system to fight harder against a cough, cold and other infections. Your body’s immune system has one job, to defend against disease-causing micro-organisms. Exercise may be beneficial for immune health. Exercise causes immune cells to change in two ways:

  1. Initially during exercise, the number of some immune cells in the bloodstream can increase dramatically by up to 10 times, especially, “natural killer cells” which deal with infections.
  2. After exercise, some cells in the bloodstream decrease substantially. Evidence suggests that these cells have not been lost, but instead moved to other sites in the body to go and look for infections to fight.

As little as 20 minutes of exercise a day may be enough to boost your immune system. Light to moderate exercise can be as simple as walking your dog or taking a bike ride. Whether the theory of exercise improving immunity is ever proven or not, it’s safe to say physical activity makes you feel healthier and more energetic.So, get moving today. 

“A man too busy to take care of his health is like a mechanic too busy to take care of his tools.”   Spanish Proverb