Yet another reason to get off that couch (or computer chair).
Yes, moderate exercise enhances our immune system - and frequent exercisers get even more protection against illness.
How? I'm glad you asked.
Here are some of the immune building benefits of exercise:
- Regular exercise will strengthen the cardiovascular system (also known as the circulatory system). Blood circulation then improves, making it easier for your cells to transport oxygen and other vital nutrients to other cells that need it. Your cells' ability to eliminate waste products such as carbon dioxide and toxins also improves.
- Regular movement is absolutely critical for a healthy lymphatic system. The lymphatic system, a major part of your immune system, is closely tied to the circulatory system. It doesn't have a central pump, unlike the circulatory system which has your heart. Instead it must rely on your physical movement to distribute immune cells throughout the body (in a fluid called lymph).
- Increased blood and lymph flow makes it easier for cells to protect you from an infection, or track down and kill invading germs that have already succeeded in infecting you.
Moderate Exercise is All You Need
Moderate exercise is a great way to boost your immune system health, especially if you are currently sedentary.
It doesn't take much to reap these benefits of exercise - even a casual bike ride or a nice long walk will do...
The main thing is to get lots of movement throughout the day (it really adds up).
And just be aware that very strenuous exercise does lower immunity temporarily. This little caveat just doesn't apply to most people...who are generally quite sedentary.
If you do have a very sedentary job, you might consider getting a treadmill desk.
If you get outside, you can also get some sunshine (make sure you know the benefits of vitamin D).
Looking for something more fulfilling that goes beyond just physical exercise? Check out the health benefits of yoga.
But say you are looking for the absolute BEST exercise for improving your immune system.
You would probably also want that exercise to get you in great shape, right? We all like multi-tasking, after all.
Say you're also looking for something low impact?
What if I told you that there is just such an exercise. An exercise so interesting that NASA has studied it extensively.
This exercise not only strengthens your muscles and bones, but also stimulates your internal organs, veins, and arteries.
Do you know what exercise I am talking about? Most people have never heard of it...
It's rebounding! And it's FANTASTIC! Fun too, let me tell you. It takes you back to when you were a kid having so much fun bouncing on your bed - until you got caught and had to stop!
Rebounder benefits are really quite impressive. It's a fun and addicting way to get in all the wonderful benefits of exercise.