5 Things You Didn’t Know About Your Immune System

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Your Immune System

No one really gives the human body—and its immune system—the credit both deserve until they’re stuck in bed, coughing up a lung and drinking tubs of chicken soup. But it’s important to take care of your immune system every day, even when you’re feeling perfectly healthy; after all, you have it to thank for feeling that way! The immune system, which serves as the body’s armor against harmful bacteria, viruses, and beyond, is much more elaborate and weird than you might think. Here, fun facts about the immune system that you can share at your next school trivia night.

Innate + Adaptive

Your immune system is made up of two parts. The innate immune system provides general defense, mostly against bacterial infections. The adaptive immune system contains antibodies, which target specific pathogens you’ve come into contact with before.

Germ-Fighting Filters

Lymph nodes, which serve as a filter for germs, are located all over the body—including behind your knees.

Guess Where Your Immune System Is?

But the majority of your immune system is located in your gut—70 percent of it to be exact.

The Five-Second Rule

The five-second rule—i.e. you can eat something that’s fallen onto the floor so long as you pick it up within five seconds—is a myth, since bacteria can hitch a ride on food instantly. Dry floors that look clean can still have bacteria on them.

Allergies Come from Your Immune System

Allergic reactions happen when your immune system overreacts to something normal and totally harmless, like a peanut or shellfish, and treats it as harmful.

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