Eating to Support a Healthy Immune System

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The Immune SystemProper nutrition is necessary to fed our intricate immune system and keep it at its optimal level. While many of the required nutrients can be found in fruits and vegetables we consume, research indicates that a combination vitamin and mineral supplement offering a complete array of nutrients may provide the most benefits to the immune system. This is because nutrients generally work together rather than in isolation and we may not consume the full range of the required nutrients in our daily meals.

Studies have shown that combining antioxidants in our diet may also benefit our immune system. In one related study, it was found that a combination of antioxidant nutrients resulted in a significant improvement in the immune system function in comparison to subjects in the same study that did not receive the antioxidant nutrients.

Vitamins for The Immune System

We often see people around us reaching for a dose of vitamin C whenever they feel run down. Besides vitamin C, there are in fact other vitamins and minerals that are crucial to boost our immune system. The complete list of our vitamins and minerals (as well as antioxidants) that are necessary to build our immune system include beta carotene, copper, manganese, selenium, zinc, vitamin C and vitamin E.

Beta carotene, as a precursor for vitamin A, gets converted to vitamin A in the body when needed. Vitamin A and E are common boosters for our immune system. Vitamin C functions as an antioxidant that protects the body against damaging oxidation agents as well as enhancing the immune function.

Minerals for The Immune System

Copper and zinc are both important nutrients that develop and maintain the healthy functioning of the immune system. In fact, studies have found that even a mild deficiency of zinc in humans can lead to an increased risk of infection. This may make it especially important that elderly and sick persons receive adequate zinc because they are especially vulnerable to wide variety of infections. Selenium is important for antibodies production. Manganese possesses antioxidant properties and is also a component of an immune related enzyme.

When choosing a vitamin supplement, look for one that offers a complete antioxidant group of nutrients since the nutrients work in synergy to give our body complete protection.

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