“Yes, with age, we observe a progressive suppression of immunity in our patients. But the speed of this process is purely individual in nature and can be influenced,” said Alexander Ustinov.
According to him, the suppression process affects all the main structural components of the immune system: stem cells and T and B lymphocytes formed from them, macrophages.
“It is the decrease in stem cell activity that is the main reason for the weakening of the immune response in the elderly.
In people over 80 years of age, the functions of the immune T system are especially affected. As a result, there is a decrease in the immune response to viruses, bacteria, and as a result, the body’s resistance to infection decreases. But we also see an expansion of the spectrum and frequency of autoimmune diseases: for example, autoimmune thyroiditis, systemic lupus erythematosus, etc. “, explained Dr. Ustinov. In addition, according to him, it is the suppression of immunity that leads to oncological pathologies.
The specialist gave a few simple tips: the implementation of these measures will help support the immune system, including the elderly:
1. Daily walks and physical activity in the fresh air should become the rule.
2. Vitamin-mineral complexes containing selenium, zinc and magnesium will help maintain immunity (before taking vitamins and dietary supplements, you should consult with your doctor).
3. Pay attention to nutrition – it is important to include sour milk and fermented foods in your daily diet (live bacteria will support healthy intestinal flora and immunity). In addition, it is important that the food had enough protein, vegetables and fruits (they bring not only “live” vitamins, but also the fiber necessary for the health of the microflora).
It is also important to increase the amount of foods rich in three key trace elements: selenium, magnesium and zinc.