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Overactive immune system and early diseases of aging?


Forum Support Assistant
This article describes how people with HIV are living longer but are getting age related diseases (heart, liver and kidney disease; cancer) earlier than other people their age.

Researchers think it's because of immune system overactivation:
HIV not only damages the immune system, it also turns on that system indefinitely, meaning the immune response triggered by HIV never really shuts down, even once drugs have begun to quell the virus. “With most infectious invaders, the immune system responds and then is supposed to rest, like a fire engine waiting to come out when there is a fire to be fought,” Dieffenbach says. “With HIV, those firetrucks keep driving around looking for fires, even when there are none.”

Many AIDS researchers believe that this “immune activation” is the primary mechanism underlying the accelerated rate of age-related diseases.

For those of us with ME who never get colds and flus, some doctors think it's because of an overactive immune system. Does anyone know if people with ME are prone to developing age-related diseases earlier than usual? If so, maybe supplements that help to reduce an overactive immune system (such as CBD oil) would be a good idea?


Senior Member
Pacific Northwest
Diseases of aging generally derive from impaired mitochondrial function and accumulating oxidative stress. This includes type 2 diabetes, cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, liver disease, etc.

Optimizing mitochondrial function, improving the microbiome and addressing nutrient deficiencies, and reducing oxidative send nitrosative stress might be steps to take.

The MitoSwab test I recently posted about my experience with could be a good tool to measure progress, as would measuring lipid peroxides, glutathione, 8OHdG, and homocysteine. Monitoring microbiome and nutrient status would be worthwhile, too.