Is managing blood sugar good enough to improve your immunity?
For people living with diabetes, managing blood sugars is only ONE PART of strengthening the immune system because having consistent high levels of sugar in the body weakens the immune system. When we talk about strengthening immunity, we refer to improving your body’s ability to fight off infection & disease.
A strong immunity requires nutrients; these nutrients are important for:
- Producing and ensuring we have enough immune cells
- Improving the functioning of the immune cells.
NUTRIENTS COME FROM THE FOODS WE EAT
Anyone, including those not suffering from diabetes/hypertension, can have a weak or strong immune system. A weak immunity is NOT ONLY related to uncontrolled levels of sugar in their blood, or high blood pressure, MALNUTRIRION plays a very big role. So does lack of sleep and lack of exercise.
When a person has an excess or deficiency of nutrients, we refer to this as malnutrition. It could relate to the quantity of food you eat, if you consume more calories (energy from food) than you should consume, or it could relate to the quality of foods you eat, if you consume less (or more) micronutrients than your body requires. Nutrients are basically the substances that provide nourishments to support normal body functions like growth, reproduction, and even the proper functioning of the immune system. For example Vit C. in lemon or Zinc in meats & eggs etc.
Overlooking aspects of nutrition that contribute to a strong immune system is like trying to borrow money from Mshwari so as to repay a loan from Tala. In the end, you are still left with a loan to pay – in our case, an immune system grappling to keep up with its main task of protecting our bodies from infection.
THE FOODS YOU EAT WILL DETERMINE THE STRENGTH OF YOUR IMMUNITY
There are thousands of foods, and very many nutrients. We need to put emphasis on giving our bodies the right blend and amount of nutrients to keep our immune systems functioning at their best. For example, fruits cannot be left out from our diet simply because we want to manage our blood sugars. Instead, we should have them at the right time, depending on our blood sugar readings. The next Page will give you the direction on how to use the nutrition tool we have given you access to. It tells you exactly how many calories you should eat, depending on your age, sex, the amount of exercise you’re undertaking and also depending on the disease you wish to address. It will also list out the nutrients you require to strengthen your immunity while managing your blood sugars.
Engage in regular physical activity to ensure good circulation of the immune cells in our body; Get enough sleep since consistently getting less than 6 hours of sleep every night leads to a weakened immune system. Prolonged stress also suppresses our immune systems, and that is why the 30minutes of exercise is very important in lowering the cortisol levels. Finally, keeping in mind that every part of your body, including the immune system, functions better when protected from environmental assaults, stay clear of habits such as smoking and excessive alcohol consumption. Pick up good habits; eat more vegetables and legumes, exercise regularly and please WASH your hands as often as you can!
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