Short Bouts Of Exercise Can Boost Immune Function

Short Bouts Of Exercise Can Boost Immune Function

From diet and alternative remedies to deep breathing and exercise, many things can boost immune function. A new study found that short bouts of exercise (just 15 minutes at a time) can improve the immune system. The findings come from the American Physiology Summit, which recently took place in Long Beach, CA. Short bursts of exercise increased the activity of natural killer (NK) cells, which are white blood cells that fight both cancerous and infected cells in the body.

As of right now, the study has not been published in a peer-reviewed journal. Even still, this isn’t the first study linking exercise to higher levels of NK cells in the bloodstream. Additionally, the number of NK cells appears to increase just minutes after engaging in physical activity. Researchers from the new study said that findings only add to the growing mound of evidence that increasing NK cells may offer better protection against diseases and infections. That is why short bouts of exercise are enough to activate the immune system and increase NK cells in the bloodstream.

15 Minutes Of Exercise May Improve Immunity

The recent study involved 10 participants between the ages of 18 and 40, making it a very small study. Each participant rode a stationary bicycle for 30 minutes at moderate intensity. Before the participants started cycling, the researchers drew blood samples. The researchers drew more blood after 15 minutes on the bike, and then again after 30 minutes on the bike. After 15 minutes of cycling, researchers observed that levels of NK cells increased. They did not continue to increase after 30 minutes of cycling. Researchers note that these findings suggest that 15 minutes of physical activity is enough to boost NK cell production, which aids immunity.

How Do NK Cells Keep You Healthy?

NK cells do not require previous exposure to a pathogen to identify and attack it, which makes them different to other immune cells. NK cells help destroy infected and diseased cells, such as cancer cells. These cells are always on the lookout for malignant cells, meaning that higher levels of NK cells in the body may improve the prognosis of different types of cancer. One report found that different NK cells were associated with survival in people with colorectal cancer. 

Exercises Boosts Immunity In Other Ways

In addition to boosting NK cells in the body, physical activity causes the body temperature to rise. Most viruses and bacteria can easily survive in normal body temperature. Research states that heat makes it harder for these viruses to survive. Physical activity also helps to lower stress levels, and lower levels of cortisol has been linked to better immune function. Reducing stress levels can also improve symptoms of depression and anxiety. Depression and stress can lead to chronic inflammation, which impacts the body’s ability to fight off infections. 


Prolonged bouts of intense exercise can suppress immune function, which is why allowing the body to rest between workouts is paramount. Create a thoughtful approach to your exercise regimen, with the goal of exercising regularly with proper rest and recovery time. Keep in mind that just 15 minutes of exercise can help improve immune function by enhancing the production of NK cells. Elevated levels of these white blood cells can help fight infected or cancerous cells in the body, which may offer better protection against diseases and infections.



Refer A Friend give 15%
get $20