Building strong immunity has always been critical to
the survival and success of mankind, but never more so than today. We live in a
world in which our God-given dominion has been progressively compromised. Our
soil nutrients have been largely stripped and replaced with synthetic chemical
isolates. Our genetically modified food supply has been contaminated with
pesticides, antibiotics and hormones.
Here in what is presumed to be the most modern and advanced of all
civilizations, we have abandoned the wholesome foods provided by our creator for
the convenience of fast foods and "man-ufactured" or processed foods. Unlike any
generation before us, our bodies are constantly being bombarded with chronic low
level chemical toxicity, electromagnetic and radiological exposures, and
systematic poisoning from pharmaceutical and other government subsidized
The Stress Factor
Living in the information age with nonstop accessibility to and from a
virtually unlimited circle of people and influences greatly adds to our stress
level further compromising immunity. The constant, instantaneous demands on our
lives leave us with no down time and all too often, little time or energy left
for our most important relationships.
The cumulative effects of our chronic exposure to stress are too numerous to
calculate. Adrenal exhaustion and thyroid suppression for starters... it is no
wonder that America is sick and tired of being sick and tired! Could these things have possibly been on the Apostle Paul's mind when penned (under Divine inspiration) his words of wisdom, "Be no longer conformed to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds"?
What Can We Do?
Faced with these diverse challenges, what can we do to bolster our natural
defenses and strengthen our cellular energy systems? As individuals, our daily
choices determine the degree to which we avoid some of these exposures. We can
reject the Standard American Diet of processed and fast foods that is
responsible for the U.S. leading the world in degenerative illness.
We can reject the voracious and unquenchable sickness industry that now
dominates our economy and return to our creator's plan and provision for our
sustenance and vitality. That means fresh (organic when possible) fruits and
vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds, greens and quality animal based foods
(grass fed or organic meat, wild caught fish, and organic dairy and poultry).
Of course, some of our exposures are hidden and therefore unavoidable.
Several supplements can be helpful to augment essential nutrients and partially
offset unavoidable exposures by:
- Promoting Detoxification Pathways
- Supporting Digestion and Assimilation
- Controlling Inflammation
- Strengthening and Balancing Immunity
Essential Flora: Critical to Life
Some nutrients are foundational to health; none more so than
probiotics. The importance of beneficial bacteria in the gut
has finally reached the mainstream consciousness, but unfortunately, most of the
products being mass marketed today (it seems they are everywhere now) lack the
potency and/or coverage to have an appreciable impact.
The GI tract holds the vast majority of our immune cells, and it is there
that the ongoing battle for our health is won or lost. Therefore, every person
who wants to maximize their health and minimize their risk for illness should be
taking a broad spectrum(12-15 strains), high potency (at least 25 billion live
cells per serving) probiotic that contains all of the essential flora.
Wake Up Your Thymus!
The thymus gland lies just beneath the breast bone. Often referred to as the
"Master Gland of Immunity", it is large in infants and children and atrophies as
we grow older. The thymus seeds the body with immature T-cells, the white blood
cells responsible for cell-mediated immunity. This gland secretes special
chemicals called cytokines (ie.- interferon, interleukins) that influence the
specialization and migration of T-lymphocytes throughout the body. The thymus
also releases hormones that regulate immune function. These thymic hormones help
immune cells to mature, "programming" them to recognize tissues as either self
or invader. Recognizing the enemy is the first and likely most important step in
the immune response.
As we age, the thymus shrinks as its role shifts from immune cell production
to regulation of the immune response. Lower thymic hormone levels in the blood
are associated with depressed immunity, and are typical of the elderly,
individuals with chronic infections, auto-immune disorders, cancer and AIDS
patients. The thymus is extremely susceptible to free radical and oxidative
damage caused by stress, radiation, poor diet, infection and chronic illness.
People who have undergone radiation, chemotherapy or other immune-suppressing
treatments also typically have low thymus function. Whatever the cause,
depressed immunity can lead to an increase in the frequency and severity of
colds, fatigue, allergies, or the onset of opportunistic infections.
Glandular Therapy: Like Cells Help Like Cells
Glandular hormone replacement therapy is an ancient form of medicine that
leverages the wisdom that our Creator placed into all things. It is based upon
the use of animal glandular and organ substances to bolster the function of the
human body's corresponding organs and glands. Modern medicine replaces the
thyroid gland with thyroid hormone, the adrenal gland with cortisone, the
pancreas gland with insulin, and the ovaries with estrogen and progesterone.
However, physicians have not routinely replaced the thymus gland. As your
thymus shrinks and weakens with age, the most effective and direct way to
stimulate it is by consuming thymus tissue. Calf thymus has long been regarded
as a delicacy, known throughout the world as "sweetbread", but cooking destroys
many of the beneficial properties of the gland. Far more effective is to ingest
raw, freeze dried thymus extract, which leaves the thymic factors intact.
The Best Offense is a Good Defense!
There are many ways to stimulate natural immunity and promote cellular
vitality, but none more profound than building a strong foundation with
probiotics and thymus gland support. In my next article, we will discuss some
natural medicines that should be in every medicine chest to prepare for various
microbial threats, but a strong front line of defense is most necessary to
survive and thrive in these challenging times.