The immune system is like an army for your body, which battles external pathogens such as viruses and bacteria while you carry on with your usual day-to-day life. Many people are now acknowledging the role of immunity-boosting vitamins and micronutrients in determining the overall wellbeing of an individual and its role in developing a fierce response to such pathogens.
However, before you go pop that multivitamin supplement to become healthy, it is important to realise how vitamins for immune system affect it. The vitamins that help in increasing the immunity of a person are vitamins A, C, D and E. Let’s now have a detailed look at which vitamins increase immunity and details about these immunity-boosting vitamins.
Best vitamins for the immune system play a central role in modulating the immune responses, it is important to know which vitamins to focus on and their recommended quantity.
Mentioned below are the best vitamins for immune system:
Vitamin C is perhaps the most effective micronutrient that is inextricably linked to the immune system. Studies have shown that vitamin C has a direct role in preventing a myriad of infections such as the common cold. It also helps you fight infections faster in case you contact them.
The RDA recommends an intake of 75-90 milligrams of vitamin C for adults, which can be easily met by maintaining a healthy and balanced diet. Since the vitamin is available in abundance across various fruits and vegetables, one need not rely on supplements to fuel their requirement. Given below is the list of fruits and vegetables that consist of vitamin C.
If you are wondering which vitamin boosts immunity, vitamin E is an important one. It is a very effective antioxidant that is found in higher concentrations in immune cells as compared to other cells in the bloodstream. Hence, the vitamin plays a great role in boosting the immune system.
The RDA recommends 15 milligrams a day of vitamin E to keep your immune system healthy. Vitamin E deficiencies are rare since the vitamin is available in abundance and little of it is required for healthy functioning. However, since the vitamin is lipid-soluble in nature, people who have difficulty digesting fats may pose to be deficient in this micronutrient.
One must make sure though that only the optimum amount of this nutrient is consumed. While a deficiency in Vitamin E causes its own host of problems, excess of it has also been linked to causing several health problems such as cardiovascular diseases and diabetes.
List of food items consisting of vitamin E:
Oils like safflower, sunflower and soybean oil
Vitamin A is a crucial micronutrient that is essential to maintain vision and promote growth and development of the body. Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, the vitamin plays a crucial role in enhancing immune function.
The ideal recommended intake for this vitamin is between 700-900 milligrams a day. The vitamin is available in two forms across various foods that are an integral part of our diet today. In its preformed form, vitamin A is generously available in tuna, meat and dairy. The vitamin is also found in plant sources in the form of carotenoids such as:
Dark green leafy vegetables
Studies show that vitamin D has emerged as an effective modulator for the immune system. In fact, vitamin D was unknowingly used as a treatment option for tuberculosis before the advent of antibiotics. Those deficient in this vitamin have exhibited higher susceptibility to infections.
The recommended daily allowance for vitamin D is 15 milligrams a day for healthy individuals. The vitamin is also colloquially referred to as the sunshine vitamin, as sunlight is a primary source of this micronutrient.
The mineral can be found in abundance in the following foods:
Besides the aforementioned immune-boosting vitamins, several other micronutrients such as zinc, iron and folic acid also contribute towards building strong immunity.
Since we have highlighted that most vitamins mentioned above are readily available in various food items, it is recommended that one should not indulge in unnecessary dietary supplements unless they are severely deficient in certain nutrients or have strict diet regulations.
Following a healthy lifestyle is a must for your overall well being and health. However, it does not always give you the protection against medical emergencies like any unfortunate accident or severe disease. In such cases, having health insurance is your best choice as it gives you financial backing.
Vitamins that boost the immune system include vitamins A, C, D and E.
Vitamins support basic bodily functions and also help ward off viruses and bacteria. This makes vitamins an essential part of your immune system.
To increase immunity, you should have a balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables, rest properly, and eliminate poor lifestyle habits such as smoking and drinking.
Micronutrients like zinc, iron and folic acid increase immunity apart from the vitamins.