Nov. 1, 2021

This episode teaches you a lot about the immune system, immune-brain interactions and offers 12 potential tools for enhancing immune system function. I discuss how our immune system works and science-supported tools we can use to enhance our immune system.

I discuss the innate and adaptive immune systems and our various microbiomes-- not just in our gut but also in our nose, eyes and mouth and how to keep them healthy. And I review how specific patterns of breathing and foods maintain a healthy mucousal barrier that is crucial for fighting infections. I discuss how certain neurochemicals called catecholamines enhance our immune system function and how to use specific breathing protocols, types and timing of heat and cold exposure, and if appropriate, supplementation to activate catecholamines. I also discuss the role and use of serotonin for sake of accessing the specific types of sleep for recovering from illness, and I discuss how to increase glymphatic "washout" of brain debris during sleep. I also review fever, the vagus nerve and the use of atypical yet highly effective compounds for rhinitis (nasal inflammation).

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  • 00:00:00 The Mind & Immune System, New Findings: Acupuncture & Fascia
  • 00:03:00 Sponsors: ROKA, Athletic Greens, InsideTracker
  • 00:07:41 Foundational Tools & Practices for of a Healthy Immune System
  • 00:11:20 Immune System Basics: Skin/Mucous, Innate & Adaptive Immune System
  • 00:17:08 Killer Cells, Complement Proteins (“Eat Me!” Signals), Cytokines (“Help Me!” Signals)
  • 00:21:06 The Adaptive Immune System: Antibodies
  • 00:28:00 Tool 1: Nasal Microbiome and “Scrubbing” Bacteria & Viruses; Nasal Breathing
  • 00:30:33 Tools 2 & 3: (Not) Touching Your Eyes; Gut Microbiome & Fermented Foods
  • 00:34:20 Some Interleukins Are Anti-Inflammatory
  • 00:34:56 Sickness Behavior
  • 00:39:08 Some People Seek Care When Sick, Others Want to be Alone
  • 00:42:00 Sickness Behavior & Depression: Cytokines
  • 00:43:40 Reduced Appetites When Sick: Protein, Iron, Libido
  • 00:46:45 Vagus-Nerve Stimulation: Fever, Photophobia, Sleepiness
  • 00:53:03 Humoral (Blood-Borne) Factors, & Choroid Change Your Brain State
  • 00:55:04 Tools 4, 5: Reducing Sickness: Glymphatic Clearance, Pre-Sleep Serotonin, 5HTP
  • 01:07:03 Tool 6: Hot Showers, Saunas, Baths & Cortisol, Heath-Cold Contrast
  • 01:10:53 Feed a Fever & Starve a Cold (?), Adrenaline
  • 01:12:36 Tool 7: Activating Your Immune System w/Cyclic-Hyperventilation, Alkalinity
  • 01:29:10 Brain Chemicals & Cyclic-Hyperventilation; Catecholamines, Dopamine
  • 01:32:10 Mindsets & Immune Function; Yes, You Can Worry Yourself Sick
  • 01:37:00 Tool 8: Healthy Mindsets, Hope, Dopamine; Tool 9: Tyrosine; Tool 10: Cold Exposure
  • 01:42:05 Once You’re Already Sick: Accelerating Recovery; Tool 11: Spirulina, Rhinitis
  • 01:46:09 Histamines, Mast Cells
  • 01:49:22 Tool 12: Acupuncture: Mechanism for How It Reduces Inflammation; Fascia, Rolfing 
  • 01:53:40 Mechanistic Science & Ancient Practices
  • 01:58:00 Synthesis, Ways to Support Us (Zero-Cost), Sponsors, Supplements, Social Media


Please note that The Huberman Lab Podcast is distinct from Dr. Huberman's teaching and research roles at Stanford University School of Medicine. The information provided in this show is not medical advice, nor should it be taken or applied as a replacement for medical advice. The Huberman Lab Podcast, its employees, guests and affiliates assume no liability for the application of the information discussed.


Title Card Photo Credit: Mike Blabac -

This episode is from Huberman Lab whose proprietor has full ownership and responsibility on its contents and artworks. It was shared using Castamatic, a podcast app for iPhone and iPad.