Your immune system is constantly engaged in a battle with invading microorganisms. You become ill as the microbes overpower it. However, strengthening the immune system, reduces the risk of viral, bacterial and fungal infections. This post identifies the best vitamins for a stronger immune system.
There are certain vitamins which are essential for sustaining the normal activity of the immune system. In addition the immune cells need nutrients to reproduce, proliferate and function. Deficiency of essential nutrients weakens the immune system. A malnourished person is vulnerable to infections. When combined with a healthy lifestyle, supplementation with immune boosting vitamins can protect you from infections.
Vitamin A is essential for maintaining a strong immune system. In addition it is needed for the development of certain immune cells. These cells include B cells, T cells and Th cells. Vitamin A deficiency weakens the immune system by impairing synthesis of antibodies. Moreover, vitamin A is needed for maintenance and regeneration of mucus membranes damaged during an infection. The mucus membrane act as barrier to infections.
Riboflavin or Vitamin B2 is a natural immune booster. Moreover, it can reduce the risk of bacterial infections. The recommended dietary allowance of riboflavin is 1.3 mg per day for men and 1.1 mg per day for women.
Vitamin B6 is needed for the production of the immune cells lymphocytes and synthesis of the immune protein interleukin-2. Elderly people are especially vulnerable to vitamin B6 deficiency.
Higher doses of vitamin B6, more than the recommended dietary allowance, restore the normal function of the immune system. According to a study, elderly women need 1.9 mg of vitamin B6 and elderly men require 2.9 mg of vitamin B6 daily for restoring optimal immune function.
Vitamin C is the most popular immune booster. Activities of the immune system can be improved by increasing the concentration of vitamin C in the blood. In addition vitamin C is needed for production of white blood cells or leukocytes including lymphocytes, neutrophils and phagocytes.
Moreover, the antioxidants effect of vitamin C protects the immune cells from free radicals produced as a response to inflammation. Likewise studies suggest that vitamin C boosts resistance to infectious diseases and reduces durations and severity of infections. You can take up to 1000 mg of vitamin C per day to strengthen the immune system.
Vitamin D is essential for the immune system. For example it stimulates production and function of macrophages and monocytes, the precursors of macrophages. Macrophages play an important role in protecting the body tissues from pathogens. Moreover, vitamin D also regulates proliferation of B cells. Therefore by activating the immune response of the body against bacteria, vitamin D can prevent bacterial infections including tuberculosis.
Vitamin E is beneficial for the immune system. It is especially effective in improving immunity in elderly people. Vitamin E works by stimulating differentiation of immature T cells.
Aged people can strengthen their immune system by taking 30 to 200 mg of vitamin E daily. Vitamin E can also improve immunity in people suffering from AIDS. Consequently, to strengthen your immune system, you need all the aforementioned vitamins in appropriate doses.
In conclusion this post has identified the best vitamins for a stronger immune system. However, this list is in no way exclussive and it should be remembered that healthy food is as important as supplementary vitamins.
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