Keep Your Immunity at Its Peak
BY JENNIFER MORGANTI, N.D.
Most of you likely spend more energy than the average American to "live healthfully." You choose to eat the right foods, take the right supplements, and get exercise. When you really think about it, your goal to stay healthy is really an attempt to maintain a strong immune system. This, in turn, will help prevent disease, contributing to a long and healthy life. Many other systems of the human body require attention to achieve total health, but without a strong immune system, illness is inevitable.
A diet rich in organic fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and organic sources of protein are the foundation of a healthy immune system. Sleeping at least seven hours every night and making moderate exercise part of your routine are also required for peak immune function. Roadblocks include obesity, which hinders some immune cell functions. Even our emotional state can impact health—stress and negative attitude can dampen immune cell activity and allow illness to develop.
In addition to a healthy lifestyle, dietary supplements can strengthen your immune system. One exceptionally effective immune enhancing nutrient is called Rice Bran Arabinoxylan Compound, or RBAC. Found exclusively in PeakImmune 4, it is a natural product with no known side effects or toxicity. It has been used and researched in Japan under the brand name BioBran for over 10 years. RBAC is made from rice bran, an indigestible fiber from the outer shell of the rice kernel. Treatment with enzymes derived from Shiitake mushrooms act as chemical scissors that break down the large rice-bran molecule into smaller molecules called RBAC, which can easily be absorbed by the body. Many in-vitro and human studies have been conducted on RBAC, which confirm that it stimulates several segments of the immune system.
The general function of the immune system is to identify and eliminate foreign, "non-self" materials that contact or enter the body and cause illness. These foreign materials are called antigens and include bacteria, viruses, parasites, and fungi. Not surprisingly, components of the immune system are also capable of identifying and destroying abnormal cells. The main cells of our immune system consist of white blood cells (WBCs), which include macrophages, B, T, and NK cells.
Macrophages constitute an important arm of our defense mechanism in immune response. Research shows that macrophages are involved in our fight against invading microorganisms by engulfing them through a process called phagocytosis. After the microbial pathogens have been engulfed, macrophages produce chemical messengers called cytokines—regulators of the immune system that help cells communicate information back and forth—and a molecule called nitric oxide to kill the bacteria, thereby destroying the invaders. Macrophages play additional roles, such as presenting foreign material to other WBCs for notification and evaluation . This process is called antigen presentation.
There are two main types of T cells (called such because they mature in the thymus behind the breastbone): T helper cells (that act to enhance the immune system) and cytotoxic T lymphocytes (that are capable of going one-onone with and destroying targeted cells). T helper cells are the primary producers of the chemical messenger cytokines. These cytokines stimulate the immune system and keep it strong and active.
B cells, when activated, are responsible for the production and secretion of molecules called antibodies (or immunoglobulins) that circulate through the fluids of our body, recognizing and attaching to their specific target antigens.When a B cell encounters its target antigen, it transforms into a plasma cell, which produces large quantities of antibodies. Plasma cells also multiply so that the infection can be managed rapidly. Antibodies work by binding to antigens, which incapacitate invading microorganisms or targets them for destruction by other immune cells. They represent the predominant response to bacteria and provide specific defense against some viruses. After the initial response, "memory B cells" are created to produce a more rapid and efficient response to repeated exposures of the same antigen. This is the basis for the effectiveness of vaccination.
NATURAL KILLER OR NK CELLS
NK cells have been defined as the first line of defense against malignancy. NK cells are programmed to kill abnormal cells on sight, without requiring special instructions from the immune system to attack the foreign cell. Inside NK cells are tiny toxic granules that inject into targets to destroy them upon contact. The number of granules in an NK cell is what determines the killing ability of the cells. The activity of these powerful immune cells is a predictor of mortality for an ill person.
The immune-stimulating effects of RBAC have been demonstrated in many studies. RBAC (BioBran) has been shown to consistently triple NK cell activity, increase macrophage count, and enhance B and T cell count.
Once RBAC is inside the body and comes in contact with WBCs, it can strengthen the immune cells and provide more ammunition to fight antigens. The exact mechanisms behind NK cell-mediated destruction are still a bit of a mystery. Humans treated with RBAC demonstrated increased binding of the NK cell to target antigens, toxic granular content, and production of immune stimulating cytokines.
One of the many clinical trials that tested RBAC showed that it increased NK cell activity, and B cell and T cell counts in 32 patients within a few weeks. The safety of RBAC is also confirmed in this four-year study, because there were no signs of toxicity or negative side effects for the duration.
Some immune-enhancing supplements lose their effectiveness when taken for long periods of time, making it is necessary to take respite from them to regain their activity. RBAC is unique since it can be taken continuously without compromising its ability to enhance immune function. In patients who have been followed for up to five years, NK activity has remained elevated with continued administration of RBAC. Equally important is the fact that this all-natural supplement is immune "modulating," meaning it never overstimulates the immune system. The naturally derived RBAC, found in PeakImmune 4, is superior to pharmaceutical immune stimulants—based on the fact that in all the years of clinical trials, no serious side effects, toxicity, or drug interactions have been reported.