A healthy immune system is very essential to maintaining a healthy body, since a weakened immune system leads to illness. A strong immune system acts as a healthy fortress against infectious disease and illness. Here are some powerful nutrients to rev up your immune system.
Vitamin C : Vitamin C leads the list of immune-boosting vitamins. It is a powerful antioxidant that protects against infection and enhances immunity. Vitamin C works by increasing the production of white blood cells, which fight off infection.
Vitamin A and Beta Carotene: Vitamin A enhances white blood cell function, enhances resistance to infection and helps maintain a healthy immune system. Besides being a precursor to Vitamin A, beta carotene has its own unique immune-stimulating properties that Vitamin A does not.
Vitamin D: Emerging evidence shows that adequate blood levels of this essential nutrient helps you to stay healthy, besides helping you to maintain a healthy immune system. Decreased blood levels of vitamin D have been correlated with an increased risk of catching the influenza virus.
Vitamin E: Vitamin E is another vital nutrient for maintain a healthy immune system. Vitamin E enhances the production of B-cells, the immune cells that produce antibodies that destroy bacteria.
Zinc: Zinc is one of the most important nutrients for maintaining an overall healthy immune system. Zinc increases the production of white blood cells that fight infection; and helps them fight more aggressively. Zinc increases the number of infection-fighting T-cells, especially in elderly people who are often deficient in zinc, and whose immune system often weakens with age.
Selenium: Selenium is believed to have an important role in boosting immune
function by strengthening the disease-fighting properties of the white blood cells that destroy invading micro-organisms.
Dimethylglycine ( DMG ): DMG is an adaptogen, which improves oxygen utilization, detoxification, cell protection, immune system modulation, and enhances the healing process. Deficiency of DMG can make us susceptible to stress and infection.
Beta glucans: Beta glucan is a polysaccharide derived from the cell wall of baker’s yeast, oat and barley fiber, and many medicinal mushrooms, such as Reishi, Shiitake, and Maitake. They are also known as biological response modifiers. Recent studies suggest that Beta 1,3 glucans could actually have the power to influence the way your immune system responds to microorganisms. Emerging evidence shows they send signals to your body to help stimulate immune cell production and to increase their activity. Maitake D-fraction is a highly standardized and purified 3-branched beta-1,6 glucan containing about 30% of protein, extracted from the Maitake mushroom fruiting body. The D-fraction has demonstrated the most potent immune enhancement and antitumor activity regardless of the route of administration.
Probiotics and Prebiotics: Probiotics are “friendly” bacteria that will help boost your immune system. These include bacteria like lactobacillus acidophilus, lactobacillus lactis and lactobacillus bulgaricus . Keeping levels of friendly bacteria in your stomach in balance is absolutely essential in maintaining a healthy immune system. Yoghurt is an excellent source of Probiotics. One of the ways to keep friendly bacteria in balance is to give them the nourishment they need to go forth and multiply. And that nourishment comes from something called prebiotics . Prebiotics are non-digestible nutrients that are used as an energy source by certain beneficial bacteria that naturally live in your intestines. Prebiotics occur naturally in a variety of foods, especially high-fiber foods, including certain fruits, vegetables and grains.
Allicin: Allicin is the principle biological active compound of garlic, which possesses powerful anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral properties. It is referred to as “nature’s antibiotic”. Daily consumption of this compound has shown to significantly increase immunity against infectious diseases.