Infections occur when disease-causing microbes invade our bodies’ tissues and multiply. Infectious agents include viruses, bacteria, fungi, ringworms, and parasites. The reaction our bodies experience due to these organisms and the toxins they produce create infectious diseases. We can see clinical evidence of illnesses caused by infections through the growth of pathogenic microbes that can occur in a person.
Our bodies fight infections through the immune system. Cells have a mechanism to destroy these agents if they enter the cell; they react to infections with an innate response which often involves inflammation, fevers, headaches, and a lack of energy. These symptoms usually happen via rapid bodily response in an effort to be rid of any foreign invader.
Allopathic medicines that focus on infections and pathogens are based on synthetics that imitate natural antibiotics. Generally physicians use specific drugs such as antibiotics, antivirals, antifungals and antiprotozoals. Although these drugs work and kill bacteria, we have to remember that bacteria communicate with each other, passing along information regarding the environment, food availability, toxins, the presence of water, chemicals, and poisonous agents. To ensure survival they stop multiplying and encapsulate if conditions being to change and become unfavorable. Once encapsulated, chemicals are not able to pass through the membrane. This means pathogens survive in an encapsulated form within tissues. Here they wait until conditions improve so that they can break out of their cocoons and begin to multiply again.
Even with all the new insight and knowledge that scientists have discovered regarding bacterial encapsulation, antibiotics are still commonly used. While it’s true that whenever we use any kind of antibiotic a great number of bacteria die, it’s also very important to remember that some bacteria will always encapsulate. Although we’ll begin to feel better, if our immune system is compromised encapsulated bacteria will remain. While bacteria are essentially harmless in this state, they can stay in or outside of our cells until there is an optimal environment for them to come out and begin infecting our bodies again.
If our lifestyle doesn’t change, reinfections will always occur regardless of how many antibiotics we put into our system. These reinfections can occur in weeks, months or even years later. Doctors are typically educated on this matter, but will usually prescribe a different antibiotic after an old one becomes ineffective. The problem with this is that the pathogens will go through the same exact process with the new antibiotic and eventually become immune to it as well. This cycle leads to a weakened immune system and a higher rate of reinfection.
Another important note about antibiotics is that excessive use of them can damage the “good bacteria” living in our intestines. These bacteria have important jobs in relation to our health. They help keep dangerous bacteria out, alert the immune system of any changes and create a byproduct that helps keep our intestines healthy. They also help with our metabolism. If these bacterial populations change, our health weakens.
Addressing the root of the problem is the key in solving chronic infection issues. Let me explain a little more.
We are composed of 60 trillion cells. 20% of all of our cells (that’s 12 trillion) are immune cells designed to recognize any agent that does not belong in the body such as bacteria, viruses, toxins, fungi, cancer cells, etc. They carry weapons to destroy unhealthy agents or cells. Their response is immediate and effective. Additionally, immune cells cannot live outside of the body. These immune cells are strategically placed and are on patrol to protect us. One of the most intriguing facts about immune cells is that they contain information about more than 200 types of cells, enabling them with the ability to distinguish between friend and foe. They communicate with our brain via neurotransmitters and hormones.
There are different types of immune cells. Some identify the enemy. Some mark them. Some will read enemy information. Some kill. The rest clean up afterward. This whole system is amazing. If all of this protection is working correctly, it’s nearly impossible for us to get sick. As a matter of fact any viral infection wouldn’t last more than a few hours if the immune system is working well. In reality, most bacteria aren’t even our enemies. There are bacteria living in almost every part of our bodies. Each of these bacteria does something to help us such as keeping threats out of our bodies.
The real problem happens when our immune system is not at its best. Viral infections such as the flu and bacterial infections last longer when our immune system is not able to contain these intruders fast enough. This is how these infections last for days or weeks on end. When antibiotics are used the problem becomes more serious. Whatever the case may be, at the root of the problem is an unhealthy or weak immune system that’s unable to act as it should. Here are a few reasons why this might happen:
Chronic stress affects the thymus. The thymus is a gland that regulates immune production and activity. A lot of stress results in excess cortisol, which affects our immune response and damages this gland. The spleen and it’s communication with neurons via neurotransmitters are also affected. Chronic stress affects hormone production, affecting our metabolism. Weight problems, including obesity, are often the result of poor metabolic function.
Lack of sleep is also problematic to the immune system. A lot of repairs take place in the body as we rest. While we sleep detoxification, brain circuitry repair and neurotransmitter production and balance also occur.
Another possible reason for a compromised immune system is chronic inflammation. Weight problems and other unresolved illnesses produce chronic inflammation. Normally, inflammation is the natural response in the process of healing. Chronic inflammation, on the other hand, is an indicator that normal healing is not taking place. Persistent inflammation affects the immune system and can cause confusion, leading to immune cells attacking healthy cells and tissues.
Poor nutrition also affects the immune system. Poor nutrition leads to the production of unhealthy or weak cells. Without proper nutrition the body can’t function the same way because there is so much time and energy being spent to get rid of unhealthy cells. Lack of nutrients means there’s a deficiency of usable energy at the cellular level. Normal cellular functions become a chore. If one organ begins to weaken, other organs are affected. This is due to the nature of our different tissues contributing to one another. When there is an illness or lack of nutrition in one area, other areas are always affected. This puts the immune cells at a disadvantage when trying to control invasion.
Malnutrition also affects our intestinal flora. Think about it – these friendly bacteria eat what we eat. So of course they’re going to be affected by lack of fiber or excess sugar or the chemicals in processed foods. We’ve already gone over how we need healthy microbes in our gut to help protect us against infection. Lack of fiber in particular is a very serious problem for our intestines. This is because friendly bacteria eat this fiber. As they eat fiber they produce and a type of mucus which creates a barrier in our intestines that keeps foreign microbes out, preventing them from coming in direct contact with our intestinal tissues.
Here are some tips to keeping the immune system healthy: Eat well. Drink lots of water – that means 8 to 10 glasses per day for adults. We also need at least 7 hours of sleep a night. Keeping our stress under control is important. Avoid smoking or drinking. Get at least 20 minutes of physical activity a day, 4 times a week. Using the Phytotherapi Infection protocol when dealing with these issues can also help in reducing re infection and assist in supporting the body’s immune system and defenses.