We were equiped with a brain, whose mysteries still evade and mystify even those who believe themselves gifted with the knowledge and intelligence to understand virtually anything under, and above the sun – as it practically controls everything about us, how we think, react to various situation, and even telling us when we need to eat.
Then, there is the greatest wonder of all – how two mere microscopic organisms can fuse, and begin a truly mind-blowing process of developing into, firstly a seemingly formless and disgusting blob, but then transform (as if by some magic) into the various recognizable parts of the human body…a beating heart, brain, eyes, hands, legs, and everything else that makes us who we are.
These organs, in themselves, are further proof of how we are wonderfully and fearfully made and designed by an Almighty Jehovah God – as their specialized functions are the epitome of what defines perfection.
Nonetheless, there is one more feature of the awesome human body whose brilliance always stands out – the immune system.
This is a system that my mother – who is now a retired nurse – enjoyed teaching me about as I grew up, which she loved referring to as “my body’s soldiers” that should be well-treated in order for them to protect and defend me from outside “invading diseases”.
In more technical terms, this is the system that differentiates self from non-self, and protects the body from foreign substances and pathogenic organisms by producing an immune response.
It includes organs such as the thymus, the spleen and lymph nodes; tissue such as bone marrow, and lymphoid tissues such as the tonsils; cells such as lymphocytes including the B cells and T cells, and cell products such as antibodies.
In simpler language, as my mother taught me – our body’s soldiers!
When well-catered for, this system – as any other in the human body – brings out its best, and is able to work nearly to perfection, in its role of defending the body from “foreign invaders” that can cause disease and other harm.
This entails, eating and drinking healthy, keeping the body exercised, and any other general natural maintenance.
In fact, the most effective way to keep one’s immune system shipshape is to allow it to do its work with minimal hindrance and interference – so that, it can create its own antibodies, that will fight off infection.
Even several scientific studies have shown that children who grow up exposed to outdoors environment – where they are more likely to encounter various germs: potential pathogenic substances, as bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoa – develop stronger immune systems than those who had sheltered lives.
That makes a lot of common sense – sense how else can one develop and grow any part of their lives without allowing them to face, and fend off, challenges?
Any element of the human body requires some form of exercise to grow – that is, exposed to strenuous action, that pushes it to develop means of overcoming those identified challenges.
For instance, the best way to advance one’s thinking and problem-solving skills, is by constantly engaging (deliberately or involuntarily) in various challenging situations that require the mind or muscles to solve and overcome.
I remember in form two in high school, I broke my left arm – during a botched attempt at hurdles running, when I stumbled on one of those pesky things, and fell – leading to my arm, from elbow level to the hand being encased in a plaster of Paris for six irritatingly itchy weeks.
Of course, as to be expected, when the cast was finally removed – much to my great relief – I had difficulties moving and using my left hand.
Simple, really – because, as it has seldom been used during the six-week encasing, the muscles became lax and weak, thereby requiring some further few weeks of physiotherapy, in order to exercise the affected part.
Another example for the need and importance in exposing the mind and body to exercise is found in writing work – whereby, due to the advent of spellcheck, autocorrect, and word suggestion during typing, I have disturbingly lost some of my spelling abilities, as my smartphone easily does the work for me.
The same applies to those who frequently use calculators for their arithmetic – in that, they may find it utterly difficult to solve a simple mathematical calculation, if required to do so mentally.
The same logic applies to our immune systems.
It is most tragic that the world does not want to ask why those on the African continent have not been severely affected by diseases as COVID-19.
Why – in spite of only 4% of the entire population having been vaccinated against SARS-Cov-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) – we still remain the least impacted, save of course, for South Africa?
There can never be a simple answer – however, there is one glaring truth, due to our economic and traditional lifestyles (which some in other parts of the world may regard as backwards and poverty-driven) we have inadvertently enabled our immune systems to develop significantly.
Our basic nutritional diets are largely natural, and the vast majority can not, or have no, access to conventional “modern” medications – thereby, “exercising” and strengthening our own immune systems to develop, such that are better prepared to confront quite a significant number of pathogens that have ravaged the rest of the world, most particularly COVID-19.
The problem with countries in the so-called “developed world” – sadly, including our own South Africa – is that, their populations are like the “sheltered kid”, whose diets are not only largely unhealthy ad overly-processed, but have shielded their immune systems from developing and strengthening naturally, due their obsession with medications for nearly everything.
The expected and obviously unsurprising consequence is that, their bodies become ready cannon fodder for quite a significant number of pathogens.
Surely, watching some of the medication advertisements on foreign television stations (especially, from South Africa) is quite frightening.
One can easily get over-the-counter medicine for heartburn; acidity, fatty, and other unhealthy foodstuffs; vitamin and other supplements; energy boosting; mental vitality; and so mc more – this, on top of the obvious prescription medications, including vaccines, these same people would be taking.
Surely, how then does one’s own immune system develop and strengthen, when it is not only seldom given the chance to tackled pathogens on its own, but also it is drowned in unhealthy foodstuffs, that do nothing to help it?
How different is that from my hand that was encased in a plaster of Paris for six weeks, or that school pupil who always uses a calculator for all this mathematics, or my being used typing with the aid of spellcheck, autocorrect, and word suggestion?
Inevitably, the body’s own defence system becomes weak when the it is always dependent on medication – thereby, succumbing to seemingly endless diseases, resulting in the need for even medications, as the body would not be able to manage on its own.
Of course, mega-billion dollar pharmaceutical companies would never want such common sense to be made known to the wider global population – since that would be a huge unwelcome threat to their bottom line.
I am sure the propagation of such knowledge will easily be characterized as “peddling misinformation” – a tool that has tragically been often abused to muzzle perceived threats on multi-billion dollar industries, as we have so unfortunately witnessed with the hysterical intolerance surrounding anyone daring to question the COVID-19 vaccine narrative.
I am not speaking against medication as a whole – since, it can not be denied that so much good has come out, especially over the course of the past century.
However, what we are witnessing in today’s world can not be considered not normal at all – as the world has become overly-dependent (maybe, even abusive) of these medications, resulting in more harm than good.
As my beloved retired nurse mother taught me from a very young age – give your own body the chance to fight its own battles, as that is what it was so beautifully designed to do, and only resort to medication as a truly last option.
© Tendai Ruben Mbofana is a social justice activist, writer, and social commentator. Please feel free to contact him on WhatsApp/Call: +263715667700 / +263782283975, or Calls Only: +263788897936 / +263733399640, or email: [email protected]Post published in: Featured