If you catch any cold or flu virus, your immune system is responsible for fighting it.
Research shows that improving your nutrition, vitamin and mineral levels could help support optimal immune function.
Micronutrients essential to fight infections include vitamins A, B, C, D and E and minerals including iron, selenium and zinc
Vitamin A maintains the structure of the cells in the skin, respiratory tract and the gut. This forms a barrier and is your body’s FIRST LINE OF DEFENCE. We also need vitamin A to help make antibodies which neutralise the pathogens that cause infection.
B vitamins particularly B6, B9 and B12 contribute to your body’s first response once it has recognised a pathogen or virus. They do this by influencing the production and activity of “natural killer” cells. These cells hunt down and attack infected cells to destroy them.
VITAMINS C and E
When your body is fighting an infection, it experiences what’s called oxidative stress. Oxidative Stress leads to the production of free radicals which can pierce cell walls, causing the contents to leak into tissues and exacerbating inflammation Vitamins C & E help protect cells from oxidative stress Vitamin C also helps clean up this cellular mess by producing specialised cells to mount an immune system response.
Some immune cells need vitamin D to help destroy pathogens that cause infection. Although sun exposure allows the body to produce vitamin D, this can also be found in some foods and supplements.
A review of 25 studies found that vitamin D supplements can HELP protect against acute respiratory infections particularly among people who are deficient in this vitamin.
IRON, ZINC, SELENIUM
We need iron, zinc and selenium for immune cell growth among other functions. Iron helps kill pathogens by increasing the number of free radicals that can destroy them. It also regulates enzyme reactions essential for immune cells to recognise and target pathogens or virus.
Zinc helps maintain the integrity of the skin and mucous membranes. Zinc and selenium also act as an antioxidant, helping mop up some of the damage caused by an infection.
Immune System Booster Programme
You may be feeling anxious about your health at this moment in time and you are doing everything possible to try and stay protected. The current virus presents many uncertainties. The one certainty is we know we have a battle ahead. We cannot eliminate our risk but we can be prepared and help ourselves by boosting our immune system.
If you happen to contract any virus, your immune system will be the first line of defence. It is responsible for the fightback. Research has confirmed that improving your nutrition helps support optimal immune function.
Learn more about the Immune System Booster Programme from Health Diagnostic Labs.