Post-vaccine exercise boosts antibodies, study shows

YesYou’ve probably heard that exercising has great benefits, right? It improves heart and lung health, increases strength and supports your mental health. But exercise also has immune benefits. In addition to lifestyle habits like sleep, rest, managing stress, and eating a nutritious diet, exercise can help you stay healthy.Recently published in Brain, Behavior and Immunity Point out another potential aspect of immune support: strenuous exercise after receiving a COVID-19 or flu vaccine may increase antibody production.

For more information on why this link holds scientific promise, emergency room and sports medicine specialist Mark Conroy, MD, breaks down what happens to your body when you exercise and why it may benefit your immune system .

what is an antibody

Antibodies are disease-fighting agents produced by the body, Dr. Conroy said. Usually, antibodies are produced when the body is exposed to a virus or pathogen (that is, when you are sick). The immune system then creates mechanisms to kill these particles, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Enter the left-hand stage: vaccines.Vaccines are valuable tools for advancing antibody development No Mr. Sick. Think about it: get test answers (shots) from classmates and hide them in your sleeves during the test. Vaccination gives the immune system a chance to produce antibodies, so when you do eventually come into contact with a pathogen, hopefully your body is ready to shred it to pieces.

OK, but how does exercise affect the immune system

Exercise does have a considerable impact on the immune system, Dr. Conroy said. Exercise, especially vigorous exercise, can cause the body to develop a stress response. Stress responses often cause the immune system to respond in a number of ways, including antibody production.

In addition, lymph fluid is the primary means by which the immune system transports essential disease-fighting agents. Unlike blood, lymph does not have a single muscle like the heart to pump it. Instead, the continuous contraction of the musculoskeletal system promotes the flow of lymph, which helps your body fight disease-causing pathogens. It’s a complicated way of saying that moving helps your immune system carry disease-fighting agents, waste, dead cells, debris to the organs that flush them out of your system. Here’s why walking can help you get over a hangover: Your movement can get things to where they need to go faster.

In the study, participants who rode a stationary bike or walked briskly for 90 minutes after a COVID-19 or flu vaccination appointment developed more antibodies over the next 4 weeks than those who continued their daily routine after immunization many. Those who exercised for 45 minutes did not record an increase in antibody levels.

Dr Conroy said the study was a good introduction to exercise as an immune-boosting activity. “We know that exercise has many health benefits for cardiovascular benefits, blood sugar benefits, improved mental health, and ability to manage stress,” Dr. Conroy said. “We also know that exercise can strengthen your immune system in several ways.” In this case, more antibodies are better than no antibodies, and increased antibody production is even better, he said. The results bode well for further information and research.

It’s worth noting that the sample group here is small: only 78 people. Therefore, the results suggest that more research is needed on the topic, Dr. Conroy said. This is the start of an exciting and necessary study to draw the line between exercise and vaccine efficacy. Also, remember that getting the COVID-19 vaccine is the best way to protect yourself from serious illness.

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