When you inhale nicotine, it enters the lungs, from which it enters the bloodstream and evenly distributed throughout the body. But it does not end there. The final destination is the brain, and acetylcholine receptors in nicotine will help make this happen. The receptors mimic acetylcholine action, which leads the brain to receive signals to produce dopamine – the hormone of happiness. Which explains the excitement you feel during smoking.
But how does this affect your immune system, and what are the ways to boost immunity after quitting smoking? We’re about to find out. Before that, let’s understand the science behind it.
There is another hormone in the body – cortisol. Cortisol is responsible for the level of stress and tension. Dopamine blocks part of cortisol, which makes your mood better. It is the balance of these two substances that determines your attitude. When you smoke, the body receives a fraction of dopamine, which is more than used. Because of this, the body so quickly gets used to the cigarette, which gives it this “happiness”.
As soon as this dose becomes habitual, there are more of the receptors mentioned above in the brain, and to get the same level of satisfaction, you need to increase the dose. And so you smoke more and more.
When you do not smoke, you may start to experience increased levels of stress. Cigarettes neutralized it in the past, but now the body needs to adjust to it (everything works the same for drug addicts, only the disaster scale is much greater).
For this reason, people who quit smoking gain weight – the body instinctively looks for other ways to get dopamine in the usual doses. It can only perform functions that have been evolutionarily useful to humans (eating food, sex, binge-watching movies, and talking with people).
In the scientific world, it has long been proven that an increased level of stress and nervousness contributes to an increase in the number of diseases since immunity is weakened.
What to do?
Well, in general, recovery of acetylcholine receptors occurs within 21 days. But this is if you do not smoke at all. For emphasis, you cannot even once a week, during holidays, or go as far as inhaling other people’s cigarette smoke. In this case, 21 days after a complete refusal, your physical habit will completely disappear.
However, the psychological effects does not just come to an abrupt end. You may miss the “magic wand,” which instantly removes all stress at a subconscious level.
One day, I breathed-in fierce tick repellent. Bottom line – I almost spat out my lungs. Drinking water did not help. After a glass of milk, the cough was noticeably weaker – it got better. Perhaps the point is the fat content of milk. In any case, I strongly recommend drinking milk. As you will see later in this article, it has more magical effects than one.
What else to do, eat, or drink if you need to enhance your weakened body defenses? What does the body lack?
Chew carrots: A healthy snack can help you overcome nicotine (and a desire to bring something to your mouth). Carrots, celery, radishes, sweet pepper slices, and other fresh vegetables are also good at getting your body’s immunity to speed.
Do gymnastics/take a shower: Gymnastics produce endorphins while taking a shower shortly after soothes and relieves stress and anxiety.
Drink milk: Milk helps to remove any toxic substances from the body. How does it do that? Well, It binds toxins, heavy metals, and helps to neutralize the effects of alcohol and nicotine quickly.
Sleep: Constant lack of sleep will serve the poor service of your immunity. Sleep at least eight hours a day. Adequate sleep will not only contribute to the defenses of your body but also provide you with a fresh look and high performance.
Take vitamins: Particular attention should be paid to vitamins C, E, A, and vitamins of group B. Vitamin supplements are great, but, in general, it is better to get vitamins and minerals naturally.
Vitamins A abundant in carrots, grapes, and herbs are found in red and orange fruits and vegetables.
Vitamin C commonly derived from citrus fruits, rose hips, cranberries, lingonberries, cabbage, especially sauerkraut.
Vitamin E is readily available in sunflower, olive, or corn oils. There are many B vitamins in legumes, in cereals, in eggs, greens, and nuts.
Drink water: for the effective removal of nicotine and proper immune function after quitting smoking, another vital prerequisite is a sufficient intake of pure water (“water regime”). Engage in physical activity that makes you sweat.
Drinking water, in this case, enhances kidney and liver function.
This list of immuno-boosting measures is quite simple and does not require any supernatural efforts. Remember: the disease is always easier to prevent than to cure!