MARKETING AFRICA MAL 18/17 mal 18:17 online - Page 82

HEALTH MATTERS WHITE BLOOD CELLS AND IMMUNITY By Kepha Nyanumba A re you aware that the delicious meal you eat, the air you breathe, the environment you live in, the people you shake hands with every day expose you to a great number of foreign substances? Sometimes there are microbes that can make you sick and dangerous viruses that lurk even in the water you drink. White Blood Cells (WBC) are like an army. They patrol your body constantly, on the lookout for attacks from viruses, bacteria, and other infections. If the scouts find a problem, they sound the alarm and the troops swarm to the site of the attack. And just like a military is made up of Army, Navy, Marines, and However, you likely do not even Air Forces, the WBC army also realize the existence of these has specialists with names like harmful substances that enter into Neutrophil, Esoniophil, Basophil, your body several times a day. The Lymphocyte, and Macrophage. reason for this is the existence of Each “branch” of the WBC military a special army assigned to detect specializes in fighting different kinds and destroy these pathogens. This of invaders. They recognize every superior army of defense comprises foreign substance that enters the of white blood cells. They are body and confronts them. While produced in the bone marrow, some directly fight with microbes, and typically work as part of the some recognize foreign molecules immune system to fight off bacterial and microbes, and warn the system. and viral infections. What’s considered a “normal” white ‘‘ White Blood Cells (WBC) are like an army. They patrol your body constantly, on the lookout for attacks from viruses, bacteria, and other infections. If the scouts find a problem, they sound the alarm and the troops swarm to the site of the attack. ’’ 80 MAL 18/17 ISSUE blood cell count is usually between 4,500 to 10,000 white blood cells (WBCs) per microliter of blood. Having a higher or lower number of WBCs than normal may be an indication of an underlying condition. When white cell blood count is low, you need to be on the alert for fever, which is usually the first sign that the body is fighting off an infection. The presence of a fever is usually related to stimulation of the body’s immune response. Fever can support the immune system’s attempt to gain advantage over infectious agents, such as viruses and bacteria, and it makes the body less favorable as a host for replicating viruses and bacteria, which are temperature sensitive. There are many factors that cause low white blood count including viral infections that temporarily disrupt the work of bone marrow, congenital disorders, cancer or other diseases that damage bone marrow, autoimmune disorders, vitamin deficiencies etc. In addition to a blood test showing low levels, other symptoms of low leucocytes (WBC) may include fatigue, recurrent infections that