Exercise is medicine: using exercise to manipulate TH1 and TH2 immune function.

The immune-system balance of T helper 1 (TH1) cells and T helper 2

(TH2) cells is often at the root of many conditions, including

autoimmune issues, allergies, and increased susceptibility to infection.

Exercise is a known modulator of TH1 and TH2 balance, which may provide

a key advantage in restoring immune function. In this month’s

column, we explore how exercise may contribute to this balance and where

it may be most applicable.


Potential Mechanism

The TH1/TH2 response is recognized as a contributor to imbalances

in immune function. The TH1 cells are involved with cell-mediated or

innate immunity, thus helping the body deal with intracellular pathogens

like viruses, yeast, and intracellular bacteria (mycoplasma mycoplasma

Any of the bacteria that make up the genus Mycoplasma. They are among the smallest of bacterial organisms. The cell varies from a spherical or pear shape to that of a slender branched filament. , chlamydia,

and so on). On the other end of the spectrum is the TH2 subset, which is

involved in humoral hu·mor·al
1. Relating to body fluids, especially serum.

2. Relating to or arising from any of the bodily humors.

Pertaining to or derived from a body fluid.

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