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Twenty Minutes a Day to Stimulate the Immune System and Reduce Inflammation

Stimulate the immune system

And yet another reason to carve out just a small amount of your day to dedicate toward exercise…..


A new study, published by researchers at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine, finds that one 20-minutes session of moderate exercise can stimulate the immune system and produce a cellular anti-inflammatory response. The findings show once again that exercise is very important for decreasing risk of chronic disease.

"Each time we exercise, we are truly doing something good for our body on many levels, including at the immune cell level," said senior author Suzi Hong, PhD.

During exercise, hormones such as epinephrine and norepinephrine are released into the blood stream and trigger immune cell adrenergic receptors. This activation produces many responses, including the production of cytokines such as TNF, a regulator of systemic inflammation.

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The amazing part of this research is that even if you don’t have time for your full exercise routine, just one session of about 20 minutes can produce positive results. The study also shows that moderate exercise, such as fast walking, is also sufficient for reducing inflammation – something just about everyone can do in some form.

"Patients with chronic inflammatory diseases should always consult with their physician regarding the appropriate treatment plan, but knowing that exercise can act as an anti-inflammatory is an exciting step forward in possibilities," said Hong.

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Journal Reference:
Stoyan Dimitrov, Elaine Hulteng, Suzi Hong. Inflammation and exercise: Inhibition of monocytic intracellular TNF production by acute exercise via β2-adrenergic activation. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, 2016; DOI: 10.1016/j.bbi.2016.12.017

Photo Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons