You’ve heard the saying, feed a cold starve a fever, right?
Well, science now shows that there is a strong link between our metabolism and our body’s immune response.
According to recent studies, if we look after our metabolism, we look after our immune system and are less prone to illness.
If you support your metabolism in the right way, your energy levels improve which means there is more energy for immune system to produce immune cells to protect your body from infection.
“Immune system is active in the regulation of metabolism. Lymphocyte activation initiates a program of cell growth, proliferation, and differentiation that increase metabolic demand,” writes Namrata Tomar in another study.
To explain in layman’s terms, our metabolism and immune systems are linked as they both rely on energy.
“The way our bodies regulate and manage energy—our metabolism—and our body’s ability to defend itself against pathogens—the immune response—are closely linked because a strong immune response relies on energy,” writes Professor Hotamisligil in a review paper.
“But an imbalance in this relationship can put us at risk for chronic metabolic diseases,” he adds.
So, what does this mean when managing our diet? The key is to keep the metabolism active and consume foods which boost the metabolism, which in turn will keep the immune system protected.
Research shows that one of these is drinking at least 100mg of your daily brew can boost your metabolism and increase fat burning.
When you drink coffee, your blood raises levels of adrenalin which promotes the release of fatty acids from fat tissue and hence increases weight loss.
One study showed that drinking coffee increased fat burning up to 29%, while other research has shown that caffeine has a “significant influence” on the metabolism.
“Caffeine at commonly consumed doses can have a significant influence on energy balance and may promote thermogenesis,” the study reported.
Another thing you can consume is spicy food. Peppers contain a substance called capsaicin which has been shown to boost the metabolism.
One study showed that eating peppers would burn at least 10 calories more per meal. It’s a small amount, but over sustained periods of time, eating at least one spicy meal a day will help towards boosting your metabolism.
You can also cook with coconut oil as it is high in medium-chain fats, which studies have shown to increase your metabolism by 12 per cent in comparison to long-chain fats which increase the metabolism just by 4 per cent.
Remember, boost your metabolism and you’ll also boost your immune system at the same time and prevent illness as a result.