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The immune system is the human body’s superhero. It protects you from harmful substances and allows your cells and organs to function correctly. It is so efficient that you don’t even know it’s there when it’s running smoothly. However, if your immune system does stop working at its full potential, you will feel the effects. Below, we explore the primary functions of the immune system and explain why you need to keep it healthy.
The main roles of the immune system
It’s impossible to overstate the importance of the immune system. Without it, human beings wouldn’t be able to survive. Your immune system does a whole range of impressive things that you may even take for granted:
The importance of white blood cells
White blood cells (leukocytes) are arguably the most important component of all the elements that make up your immune system. They efficiently monitor the entirety of your body and are constantly on the lookout for pathogens to neutralise. When they identify a target, white blood cells multiply and send signals to other cells to do the same. If your body becomes immunodeficient, which can be caused by age, obesity, alcoholism, or a viral infection like HIV, your white blood cells are compromised.
There are also several autoimmune diseases that your body may contract, including Type 1 diabetes, celiac disease, and rheumatoid arthritis. These all affect the white blood cell count in the human body and can severely impact the immune system's functionality.
How to keep your immune system healthy
Some viruses and diseases are so dangerous that vaccines have been developed to supplement our natural resistance to infection. From Covid-19 to Polio, vaccines have been proven to support your immune system against deadly diseases. You can’t vaccinate against every pathogen. You need to do other things to keep your immune system healthy, including: