Healthy immune system is detective, defensive, tolerant, and internally regulative. It should recognize potentially harmful structures such as found in microbes and/or foods. It should also be able to start an appropriate response to the degree of threat these structures pose. Immune response are strictly controlled and actively resolved by genetic cascades and intricate enzymatic activity. At the same time the immune mounts a response it also causes injury to our tissues. And it needs to be able to repair the damage that is caused as well as damaged caused by external factors. And lastly, a healthy immune system needs to be tolerant to SELF and certain harmless molecules. What does this mean? It needs to be able to recognize that self antigens, harmless microbial antigens and food/environmental antigens are harmless. It needs to be unresponsive when there is no harm.
Our first line of defense is the mucosa and skin associated lymphoid tissue. It’s our first barrier. When that is compromised, our fighter cells and their mediators jump in. But sometimes it may be our own tissue they attack or attack something that is completely harmless. The GI tract and respiratory tract are the biggest sources of triggers for chronic inflammation. Inflammation of tissues and organs that is not controlled can lead to autoimmune disease, allergies, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, depression, obesity, and even aging to name a few. And chronic inflammation indicates a loss of tolerance. Even a local inflammation frequently results in inflammatory response through our entire body.
Food can be inflammatory too! And I don’t mean SPICY. Saturated fats and refined sugar are one of the few triggers of inflammation. However, if our immune system is too tolerant it can lead to infections and even cancer. Several modalities are available to help mediate our immune system. Combination of botanicals, nutrition and medications are all ways to regulate our immune system. But, the same inflammatory trigger can elicit a different response in different individuals and the same therapy may not have the same individual response.
The good news is that it is not too late to correct the imbalances that show up in a thorough personalized evaluation by Dr. Samara so that you may restore your vitality and start a road to a healthier YOU.