LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - Our immune system is the body's defense system.
So what can we do to make it work harder at fighting illness?
Dr. James Tarbox is an Allergist and Texas Tech Physician, says our best ammunition is seven or eight hours of sleep daily because that's what helps the body restore its fuel every day.
He adds there is something we can buy to help fight a cold, but it's not vitamin C. He explains, 'Vitamin C, when you take these 10 to 100 times the amount, there's really no benefit to that. Zinc is actually good, If you take zinc at the first 24 hours of a cold, it actually reduces your symptoms by one day."
Dr. Tarbox says it's also important to maintain a good diet and exercise and to keep hydrated. He says, "Water is important. Anytime your body gets dehydrated, it's harder to fight off infections. You need 8 to 12 cups of fluid a day."
Good hygiene is also a must. He says he hopes people know by now to cough into the elbow instead of the hand. That helps prevent the spread of disease. And he says use your own pen. Don't borrow one from somebody else or you could also be borrowing their germs.
And finally, he believes a positive attitude is great medicine in building our immune system. He says studies have proven that people with a positive outlook on life have less stress. And less stress gives you a better chance at fighting infection. Likewise, he recommends a regular program of yoga or meditation. Again, he says that's a great way to invest in positive thinking, stress reduction, and a stronger immune system.