How sport affects the immune system
Regular physical activity has a positive impact on the immune system, improving its effectiveness and strengthening the body’s defences.
The following highlights several ways in which sport influences the immune system:
- Improved blood circulation: Exercise increases blood flow, which facilitates the transport of immune system cells, such as white blood cells, throughout the body. This allows for a faster response.
- Stimulates immune cell production: Regular physical activity promotes the production and release of immune system cells.
- Reduces the risk of chronic diseases: Regular exercise is associated with a reduced risk of chronic diseases, which can negatively affect the immune system.
- Reduces stress: Regular exercise helps manage stress, which, when chronic, can weaken the immune system. Stress releases hormones that, in excess, negatively affect the immune response.
Despite these benefits, it is important to note that too much intense and prolonged exercise can have the opposite effect, temporarily weakening the immune system. The key lies in regularity and moderation in sport, combined with a balanced diet and adequate rest, to maintain a healthy and robust immune system.