Our diet is related to our mental, intellectual, physical and even emotional well-being. Some food groups can weaken our immune system and lower the body’s defenses, it is essential, at this time, to keep our defenses high, try to eat a diet with natural foods, incorporate more fruit, and avoid or reduce the consumption of some of these food groups.

The immune system protects us against foreign agents such as bacteria, parasites or viruses. Our immune system is complex and there are many factors that can weaken our body’s defenses.

Among them are anxiety, stress , or lack of sleep. But our diet also influences the good state of the immune system.

Foods that damage the immune system

Especially if what we eat introduces more toxins than nutritional elements into the body. That is why it is important to know 5 foods that can weaken your immune system because if it enters a state of imbalance, its ability to fight infections is reduced by not being able to correctly eliminate cells infected by bacteria and viruses.

1. Refined sugar

An abuse of sugar is linked to the weakening of the defenses that fight against infectious diseases, causing the immune system to lose 40% of its ability to reduce infectious pathogens.

Sugar demineralizes the body, causing wear and tear on the capabilities of the immune system. To metabolize refined sugar, the body extracts minerals and vitamins from other tissues and organs, causing long-term damage.

To fight viruses and bacteria, white blood cells need vitamin C to fight infectious agents, but excess sugar erodes the vitamin C in our body.

2. Salt

An excess of salt in our diet is linked to the growth of cells related to autoimmune diseases. In these cases, the immune system acts on healthy tissues, damaging the body itself and forgetting to fight against pathogens.

3. Refined grains

They contain few nutrients and little fiber when compared to the same whole grains from which they come.

This type of food is usually highly processed so it contains an excessive presence of chemical additives and preservatives, which can considerably weaken the ability of white blood cells to eliminate bacteria since the immune system is weakened .

4. Dairy and meat

One study indicates that dairy products and red meat contain a molecule that humans do not naturally produce called Neu5Gc. Our cells absorb this compound, and over time the body produces antibodies against it.

After many years of disproportionately ingesting milk and meat, constant antibody production can trigger a mild but ongoing inflammatory immune response. This type of chronic inflammation has long been linked to cancer.

5. Sodas and soft drinks

These sugary drinks can contain between 30 to 50 grams of sugar in a single can. You can imagine the damage that a few sodas a day can do to your health. One study showed that sugar can lower the immune system just ten minutes after drinking these beverages.

The acid they contain, especially coke-type drinks, can also cause damage to the intestinal tract, allowing germs to enter. Even diet sodas can harm your immune system and perhaps especially these, which are best-sellers as “healthy.”

The aspartame found in them can damage neutral cells within the body, making more room for infection.

By Dr. Eric Jackson

Dr. Eric Jackson provides primary Internal Medicine care for men and women and treats patients with bone and mineral diseases, diabetes, heart conditions, and other chronic illnesses.He is a Washington University Bone Health Program physician and is a certified Bone Densitometrist. Dr. Avery is consistently recognized in "The Best Doctors in America" list.

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