Going into the winter months, we need our bodies’ natural defenses to be as strong as possible. What is your immunity? Learn how your immune system is influenced by your personality and natural ways to support it.
Are you extroverted, hostile, or optimistic? A bit of each?
Scientists agree that personality influences a person’s immune system. Personality is about how people think, feel, and behave and these qualities can affect biological signals like neurotransmitters and hormones that influence the immune system for better or worse. Extroverts have been scientifically studied as more physically robust (one of the key elements of sociability) and have been associated with having higher immune cell counts.
An impulsive person might head to a party instead of getting a good night’s sleep. A careless person might not wash their hands that just held onto a subway pole during flu season. A responsible person might grab that wool hat before heading out into the cold. Each of us has a few of these personality characteristics, but if you recognize that you strongly fit into a given category, then you may find the following natural immune support advice to complement your personality and enhance your defenses.
Type A: The Go-Getter
High strung “type A” and “adrenalized” participants with higher scores on neuroticism tests also tended to have lower immune system responses. The adrenals control this phenomenon. HPA axis explained: cortisol, a natural steroid secreted by the adrenal glands, manages resilience. In excess, cortisol will exert significant inhibitory effects on cells of the immune system.
Lifestyle: learn meditation / mindfulness / breathing.
Nutritional recommendation: herbal adaptogens like Rhodiola, Ashwagandha, and Phosphatidylserine
Type B: Relaxed and Social
Almost too relaxed and laid back. Need a reminder of “best practice”. These are the careless people who don’t wash their hands after touching a subway pole during flu season.
Lifestyle: work on improving personal hygiene
Nutritional recommendation: immune-enhancing herbs like mushrooms, Echinacea, and Elderberry to offset increased risk from not following rules
Type C: The Rule Abiding Perfectionist
Feel overwhelmed from complying with all the current rules, laws, and procedures.
Lifestyle: Need to be reminded to exercise and get out for walks to take a break. Consider a SAD light at your work desk
Nutritional recommendation: amino acid Theanine to support attention, focus, alertness, and calm (prevent burning out)
Type D: Distressed and Lonely
This group is feeling isolated, lonely, and often negative.
Lifestyle: need mental/emotional support to help boost immunity
Nutritional recommendation: mood-enhancing ingredients like tryptophan and tyrosine
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