Our immune system is designed to protect us from toxins and infections. But it can become overactive leading to inflammation, or underactive leaving us vulnerable to the flu and more serious infections.
Put simply, it’s our immune system’s job to defend our body against illness and disease but it needs our help to maintain it or strengthen it.
Leonard H. Calabrese, DO, head of Cleveland Clinic's Section of Clinical Immunology
“The first and most important thing is dietary. And the diet that is best for your immune system is eating real food, mostly plants, a Mediterranean like diet. Secondly is physical activity. The third pillar of immunologic health is getting adequate and restful sleep.”*
“I advocate a diet of real food, colorful food that has all the daily requirements for vitamins and also has all the additional nutrients and flavonoids that are found in genuine, plant-based eating.”*
“Now on top of all of those things, the last thing I'll say is that it goes without saying, you got to get rid of the bad things. You can't live this type of life, smoking a cigarette or drinking excesses of alcohol or taking drugs or exposing yourself to toxins. Get rid of the negatives. Healthy diet, healthy exercise, healthy sleep, healthy mind, and that leads to immune health. And you can generate this over a matter of weeks. You can start to optimize it. We know this for a fact, and I want everybody to get on the bus.”*
*Cleveland Clinic Healthy Essentials Podcast
*How to Optimize Your Immune Health with Dr. Leonard Calabrese
May 20, 2020
*How Your Immune System is Affected by Diet, Stress and Exercise with Dr. Leonard Calabrese
March 21, 2018
*Cleveland Clinic is a nonprofit, multispecialty academic medical center and is ranked as one of the nation’s top hospitals by U.S. News & World Report. Podcasts are for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as medical advice. They are not designed to replace a physician's medical assessment and medical judgment. Always consult first with your physician about anything related to your personal health.