Dr Puspo Edi Giriwono: Functional Food Consumption Helps Balance Body Immune Performance

In our body, the immune system starts from stem cells which then differentiate into various parts of the immune system. There are a series of cells that are part of the immune system that we call as innate immune response. These cells can then produce various types of cytokine that we call as adaptive immune response. Both parts of the immune system work differently, and can even collaborate to overcome infections.

Immune system which consists of innate and adaptive conditions that are well maintained will work optimally. In certain conditions, the response of the immune system can cause cytokine storm effects. In this condition, inflammation that occurs excessively is due to the accumulation of cytokine. Cytokine storm that are uncontrolled can cause failure in multi organ, and even death. 

“We have to regulate the response of the immune towards the massive infection so there is no excessive inflammation. Then what is the relationship between functional food with the immune response? Functional food with the content of certain compounds are reported to be able to suppress inflammation. Compounds such as lycopene from tomatoes and EGCG from green tea is reported to be able to modulate immune system through their activities as antioxidants so that it can reduce oxidative stress, then inhibit inflammation,” said Dr Puspo Edi Girowono, IPB University lecturer from the Department of Food Science and Technology, Faculty of Agricultural Technology (Fateta) as a guest speaker in Webinar Webinar Enhancing and Modulating Immune Response with Functional Food that was held by SEAFAST Center, Research and Community Service Institutions (LPPM) IPB University, (23/6).

According to the Executive Secretary of SEAFAST Center, besides those two compounds, there are still many compounds that could regulate immune responses such as naringin and naringenin from oranges, and others.

“Foods from Indonesia such as turmeric, ginger, chocolate and others also have the potential as raw functional food material that can regulate immune responses. What needs to be underlined is the consumption of functional food as a regulator for immune response needs to be maintained in the balance as an effort to suppress the severe effect of inflammation as one of the forms of immune response,” he added.

In his presentation, Dr Puspo Edi also explained about the emergence of the term immunity. It turns out that the term appears based on the observations of individuals who have recovered from infections of certain diseases and can be protected or freed from diseases. “Free” in Latin is called imunis which then becomes immunity in English.

Regarding immunity, Dr Edi said that the immune system that is inside of the body can respond to the entry of bacteria and virus into the human body. This immunity is a protected condition from various types of diseases. 

“We are bombarded with pathogens from environmental factors everyday. Our body will easily suffer from diseases. This immunity is a defense mechanism from the body to fight any foreign matter entering the body. The foreign objects are bacteria, viruses, and others,” he said. (IAAS/Els)



Published Date : 25-Jun-2020

Resource Person : Dr Puspo Edi Giriwono

Keyword : Seafast Center, Puspo Edi Giriwono, Immune Response, IPB University, IPB lecturer