Upper Cervical and the Immune System

by | Oct 6, 2020 | Upper Cervical

Growing up, everyone around me would get so excited for Fall and Winter. College football, back to school, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. I secretly thought, “Oh great, Fall and Winter, time for sinus infections, sick days, and a cold I won’t be able to shake for months.”

Despite the fact that I was an athlete, ate well, and on the surface looked healthy, I had to face the reality that my immune system was terrible. I evaluated my diet, and it was solid. Very little sugar, lots of fruits and vegetables, and all the things that should strengthen my immune system. I exercised almost daily. I was doing all the things I was supposed to but…..still sick all the time.

I entered into upper cervical chiropractic care hoping to rid myself of my headaches, sciatica, and ankle pain. Turns out my immune system also got supercharged once I started getting adjusted.

It has been 12 years, and I have had a grand total of ZERO sinus infections. I have only been sick/had a cold two or three times, and have only missed a total of three days of work in 10 years.

How does getting your neck adjusted improve the immune system? It is actually pretty simple.

The nervous system and the immune system are incredibly intertwined. The better the nervous system is functioning, the stronger the immune system functions. There is a system in the brain called the HPA (hypothalamic-pituitary-axis) and one of its functions is determining how much cortisol (the stress hormone) to produce. An increase in stress will signal the HPA to give the command to release more cortisol and it turns out cortisol level balance has a big effect on the immune system. So more cortisol in your system, means a lowered immune response.

If you get really stressed out, your chance of getting sick goes up. Most of us have noticed that overworking, family stress, etc. can run us down, and make us more susceptible to colds/flu and other bugs and viruses. This increase in stress activates the HPA, so more cortisol is released.

If your cortisol levels go too high or too low, it can lead to regular infections, chronic inflammation, and a depression of the immune system in general.

A misalignment of one of the top bones in the neck causes stress, and can also activate the HPA which then releases cortisol, and the whole process begins. This is why it is so important to have proper spinal alignment in order to have a strong immune system.

Research indicates that chiropractic patients have incredibly strong immune systems. Dr. Ronald Pero, chief of cancer prevention research at New York’s Preventive Medicine Institute and professor in Environmental Health at New York University measured 107 individuals who had received long-term Chiropractic care. The chiropractic patients were shown to have a 200% greater immune competence than people who had not received chiropractic care, and a 400% greater immune competence than people with cancer or serious diseases.

​Summarizing the research, Pero concluded, “Chiropractic may optimize whatever genetic abilities you have so that you can fully resist serious disease…I have never seen a group other than this show a 200% increase over normal patients.”

It is great to eat proper food, exercise, avoid sugars, and do the best you can for your body, but you also have to ensure your body can do the best for you. Have your spinal alignment checked to make sure your immune system has the best chance to fight off the coming season. Call Upper Cervical Chiropractic Centers of Fort Myers today for your free consultation.