DNAplays a part in immune system reaction to Heart Failure
DNA from a person’s own heart can play a significant part in heart failure by wrongly activating the immune response. A study co-funded by the British Heart Foundation and carried out by researchers in the UK and Japan found that in some people with this DNA the immune response is triggered during heart failure. This causes inflammation which makes the heart muscles less effective and reduces the ability to pump blood around the body.
The study, published by the journal Nature, found that the immune system is triggered by the release of DNA from the energy-generating structures in heart cells called mitochondria. Mitochondria evolved billions of years from bacteria and now share a similar DNA footprint, often causing a mistaken response from the immune system which recognises it as bacteria. “This intriguing discovery is an important breakthrough in our understanding of why, during heart failure, the immune system becomes activated without the presence of any obvious external threat,” Dr Shannon Amoils, research advisor at the BHF said.
Tips on boosting your immune system
Let’s face it — some people have better immunity than others or do they and if they do how do they achieve it?
Wouldn’t it be nice if, instead of catching every virus, you were one of those who avoided most of them? Interestingly, there are factors that may cause some people to have better immunity than others. Here are some tips for a more “immune healthy lifestyle”
- Get your sleep – 8 hours is optimal
- Keep your hands clean – use bactericide soap - a lot of cold and flu virus are transmitted by door handles or even lift buttons to name a few
- Eat healthy foods including lots of fruit, vegeatables, wholgrains and lean protein – also it maybe a good idea to top up with a multi vitamin
- Regular exercise, doesn’t need to be a lot but just regular every week
- Manage your stress and deal with situations if you can, if not your Carer will help you
- Be a sociable person and have a positive outlook. People who tend to be gregarious tend to be able to keep their colds at bay
Remember you must always consult your Doctor or Heart Failure Nurse if you are going to take on board new nutritional and exercise based regimes.