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The vitamins and minerals that really boost your immunity

Whether you’re battling an infection or a cold, adding a few vitamins to your daily diet can be incredibly beneficial. In fact, certain vitamins, minerals, and supplements have been shown to fine-tune immune function, improve antibody production, and reduce inflammation to keep you feeling good.

Here are some of the best immune supplements and how they can benefit your health, along with some simple suggestions on how to use them.

Vitamins that strengthen the immune system

Many vitamins have been shown to help boost your body’s ability to fight infection. Here are some of the most important vitamins that boost the immune system.

1. Vitamin C

Vitamin C plays a central role in immune function and is commonly used to boost the body’s defenses against infection. Impressively, a 2006 study published in the Annals of Nutrition & Metabolism even found that adequate intake of vitamin C in the diet can help reduce the symptoms and duration of respiratory infections.

Recommended dosage: 75-90 milligrams for women and men

2.Vitamin D3

Vitamin D is an important micronutrient involved in many aspects of health and is also one of the most important vitamins for boosting the immune system. Vitamin D3 is not only essential for the function of the body’s immune cells, a lack of this important micronutrient can even increase the risk of infection.

Make sure you choose vitamin D3 over other forms. In fact, it is most effective in improving vitamin D status in the body.

Recommended dosage: 400-800 IU

3. Vitamin A

This fat-soluble vitamin is important for maintaining healthy vision, supporting healthy skin, and promoting growth and development. In addition, vitamin A is also crucial for the development of certain immune cells needed to fight inflammation and infection. For this reason, it is considered one of the best supplements to boost the immune system.

Recommended dosage: 700-900 EAR for women and men

4. Vitamin E

Vitamin E is both a fat-soluble vitamin and a powerful antioxidant that helps fight free radicals and prevent oxidative damage to cells. This vitamin is one of the most important vitamins for strengthening the immune system. Studies show that vitamin E supplementation can boost immune function, increase white blood cell production, and increase resistance to infection.

Recommended dosage: 15 milligrams

5. Vitamin B6

Promising research suggests that vitamin B6 may help boost immune function to fight off foreign invaders in the body. According to a study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, giving vitamin B6 to critically ill patients significantly improved their immune response over a two-week period.

Meanwhile, other studies show that a deficiency in this key vitamin can decrease the production of important antibodies involved in immunity.

Dosage recommendation: 1.2-1.7 milligrams

Minerals important for the immune system

Several minerals have been studied for their effects on immune function and their ability to bolster the body’s natural defenses. Here are some of the best minerals for immune system health.

1. Zinc

Zinc is often considered one of the most effective immune system supplements and is essential for maintaining overall health. Research shows that zinc helps regulate the immune response and is necessary for the survival, proliferation and maturation of immune cells.

Clinical studies have also shown that an adequate intake of zinc in the daily diet can reduce the incidence and improve the course of serious diseases such as pneumonia and malaria.

Recommended dosage: 8 to 11 milligrams for women and men

2. Iron

Although iron is best known for its role in red blood cell production and oxygen transport, it’s also considered one of the best supplements for boosting the immune system.

Studies show that iron deficiency anemia can weaken the body’s immune response. This could increase the risk of illness and infection. Women, infants, children, and people on vegan or vegan diets may be at an increased risk of deficiency.

Recommended dosage: 8-18 milligrams for men and women

3. Selenium

Selenium is a powerful micronutrient that acts as an antioxidant to neutralize harmful free radicals and reduce cell damage. Studies show that selenium not only boosts immunity but may also be involved in regulating excessive immune responses to prevent widespread inflammation.

A review in the Lancet also found that low selenium intake may be associated with several adverse health effects, including poor immune function, cognitive decline and an increased risk of mortality.

Recommended dosage: 400 micrograms

Other supplements that can help your immunity

In addition to the immune-boosting vitamins and minerals listed above, several other supplements may also support immune function. Here are some of the best immune supplements to add to your routine.

1. Elderberry syrup

Elderberry syrup is made from the berries of the Sambucus tree and is often touted as one of the best natural supplements for boosting the immune system. Rich in health-promoting polyphenols, elderberry syrup is widely used as a natural remedy to treat flu symptoms and speed recovery.

Taking elderberry syrup four times a day for five days significantly shortens the duration of the flu compared to a placebo. Another review in 2019 concluded that elderberry may also help treat upper respiratory symptoms.

Recommended dosage: 1 tablespoon up to four times a day

2. Probiotics

Probiotics are beneficial bacteria found in the digestive tract. Probiotic supplements have been linked to a long list of health benefits. These include better digestion, lower cholesterol, and most importantly, improved immune function.

In fact, studies show that probiotics regulate the function of certain immune cells and may even benefit immune-related conditions ranging from viral infections to allergies and eczema.

Recommended dosage: 10-100 billion

3. Turmeric

In addition to adding a beautiful hue to curries, soups and sauces, turmeric has been extensively studied for its powerful medicinal properties.

In particular, curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, has been shown to reduce inflammation, boost antibody responses, and modulate immune function. This can offer protection against diseases such as heart disease, allergies, arthritis and diabetes.

Recommended dosage: 500-2,000 milligrams of turmeric extract

4. Basil

Basil is commonly used as an adaptogen to help improve your body’s response and adaptation to stress. This impressive plant also has anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and immunomodulatory effects. It can be therapeutic for viral infections, cognitive function, and certain metabolic disorders.

Dosage recommendation: 300-2,000 milligrams

5. Oregano Essential Oil

Thanks to its powerful healing properties, oregano essential oil is often considered one of the best immune-boosting supplements on the market. Especially when it comes to fighting infections.

A study conducted by the University of Arizona measured the antiviral efficacy of oregano oil and its main active ingredient, carvacrol, against non-enveloped murine norovirus (MNV). It has been found to help control human norovirus. Another in vitro study showed that oregano essential oil was also effective in inactivating certain strains of pathogenic bacteria.

Recommended dosage: Dilute one drop in a tablespoon of liquid

* Presse Santé strives to convey health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO CASE can the information given replace the advice of a doctor.

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