Vitamins for immunity – organic substances that enhance the barrier functions of the body. When stimulating non-specific defense factors, an effect on all parts of the immune system occurs. As a result, antibodies are released that neutralize the action of foreign agents (viruses, bacteria, fungi). In addition, nutrients support the “correct” metabolism, help to cope with nerve overloads, increase the body’s adaptive capabilities, participate in protein synthesis, and prevent gene mutations in cells.
The first mention of immunity (the human defender) was recorded two thousand years ago, and the first vaccine was developed at the end of the XVIII century. In 430 BC, the Greeks discovered that patients who had smallpox (during the epidemic in Athens) no longer suffered from this disease. In the twentieth century, Chinese prophylactic physicians blew dried scabs from oppin who had suffered a mild form of the disease into the nose of healthy patients. As a result, survivors gained immunity to the virus for life. This practice (variolation, inoculation), at the beginning of the 18th century, spread throughout New England and Europe.
In 50% of cases, the symptoms of the disease are a manifestation of the fact that the immune system entered into the fight against pathogens that invaded the epithelial layer of the upper respiratory system (in the case of the common cold).
Types of vitamins
The full work of immunity directly depends on the concentration of essential substances in the body.
Consider a list of vital nutrients:
- Vitamin A. The strongest antioxidant, antioxidant factor, oncoprotector. Fat-soluble nutrient potentiates the synthesis of protective proteins, prevents the development of cataracts, increases vitality, eliminates dry skin.
Organic vitamin names are beta-carotene, carotenoid, retinol, retinyl, retinal. A synthetic type of substance is indicated by the prefix “acetate”, for example, retinol acetate.
The daily requirement for adults is 10 milligrams, for children – 5 – 7 milligrams.
- Vitamin E. Essential element, antioxidant, immunocorrector. Nutrient stimulates the synthesis of sex hormones, dissolves blood clots, tones the walls of blood vessels, neutralizes the effects of ultraviolet radiation, maintains the correct membrane structure, participates in the formation of protective proteins, accelerates wound healing, slows down the formation of facial wrinkles.
Natural forms of vitamin – tocopherol, tocotrienol, tocopheryl, trienol. The word “acetate” in the name of the additive indicates the synthetic origin of the substance.
Daily amount is 30 milligrams.
- Vitamin C. Broad-spectrum antioxidant, oncoprotector, anti-inflammatory factor. In addition to the fight against radicals, vitamin C stimulates the synthesis of phagocytes (cells that destroy viruses), removes toxins from the body, potentiates collagen synthesis, participates in the absorption of iron, accelerates wound healing, and stimulates intestinal motility. However, these effects are characteristic only for organic forms of matter.
The name of natural vitamin C is calcium ascorbate, ester si (formula with rutin), L-ascorbate, L-dehydroascorbate, L-ascorbic acid.
To strengthen the immune system, it is important to consume at least 1500 milligrams of vitamin C per day.
- Vitamin P (flavonoids). A group of natural substances with antioxidant activity. Common representatives of vitamin P are quercetin, rutin, hesperidin, catechins, anthocyanins.
The primary role of flavonoids is to strengthen the walls of blood vessels, neutralize free radicals, enhance the pharmacological properties of vitamin C. Along with this, they protect the skin from ultraviolet radiation, prevent the development of inflammation, stimulate adaptation reactions of the body, and prevent the development of malignant tumors.
For the prevention of autoimmune dysfunction, take at least 50 milligrams of flavonoids per day.
- Vitamin B9 (folic acid). It is necessary for the full work of the bone marrow producing immunity cells. Along with this, folic acid supports the proper functioning of the endocrine, nervous and genitourinary systems. The daily portion of the substance is 0,4 milligrams.
- Vitamin B12. Organic forms – cobalamin, cyanocobalamin. B12 accelerates the regeneration of blood cells, increases the use of oxygen by tissues, stimulates the synthesis of protective antibodies, and neutralizes toxic substances in the liver.
The daily nutrient requirement is 0,003 milligrams.
- Vitamin B2 (riboflavin). Participates in the synthesis of red blood cells, enhances the regeneration processes in tissues, prevents a decrease in immune status, intensifies the synthesis of proteins, fats, carbohydrates, accelerates the healing of mucous membranes and wounds.
The daily amount of nutrient varies between 1,3 and 2,2 milligrams.
In addition, it is important to monitor the intake of micro and macro elements in the body.
The daily need for minerals is:
- chrome – 0,04 milligram;
- iron –14 milligrams;
- zinc – 15 milligrams;
- iodine – 0,15 milligrams;
- selenium – 0,07 milligrams.
What does the product craving mean?
Unfortunately, the human body cannot talk to the owner, but is able to give signals for help, which must be learned to recognize. Often, each of us is faced with a situation where we want a sharp, salty, sweet, sour, and we greedily use this or that product every day. Why it happens? The reason for this phenomenon is the lack of vitamins, minerals or nutrients in the body.
What do the products say:
- If you want chocolate. Most likely, the body lacks magnesium. To make up for the deficiency of the element, enrich the diet with bananas, seeds, nuts, avocados, buckwheat porridge.
More than 75% of the world’s population suffers from a magnesium deficiency. However, this condition is often asymptomatic, and to identify it in the early stages is problematic. In protracted form, it threatens with the development of osteoporosis, asthma, diabetes of the 2 type.
- If you want bakery products. Nitrogen deficiency in the body, which leads to the appearance of edema, the development of severe infections, discoloration of the skin, and a decrease in muscle mass. It is recommended to replace bakery products with: legumes, potatoes, nuts, meat, fish.
- If you want herring. Lack of chlorides. Drink goat milk, include seaweed, fish in the daily menu, and season dishes with sea salt.
- If you want fat. The body lacks calcium, which negatively affects the condition of the skeleton, bones. Eat sesame seeds, legumes, broccoli, cheeses, dairy products.
- If you want lemons. Lack of potassium salts, vitamin C. Deficiency of ascorbic acid in the body reduces immunity. To fill the shortage, give preference to citrus fruits (oranges, grapefruits, tangerines), blackcurrant, rose hip infusion.
- If you want burnt pies. Not enough carbon. Lean on fresh fruit.
- If you want everything and a lot. Deficiency of tyrosine, tryptophan, silicon. In this case, nuts, sunflower seeds, raisins, cheese, liver, green, yellow, red vegetables, fruits should be present in the daily diet.
Excessive appetite in girls before menstruation indicates a shortage of zinc. To replenish the element, eat red meat, roots, seafood, lettuce.
- If you do not want anything. Lack of appetite indicates a lack of thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2) and manganese in the body. The deficit can be filled with the following products: nuts, seeds, legumes, tuna, beef, turkeys, chicken, blueberries.
A constant craving for acid indicates the presence of gastritis with reduced secretion, bitter – intoxication of the body, acute – impaired lipid metabolism, increased cholesterol, tart – decreased immunity, fresh food – stomach ulcer, duodenal ulcer, liver and gall bladder problems, sweet – disorders of the nervous system.
The role of the immune system is to identify “their” and “foreign” antigens. Therefore, a change in its functionality (upward or downward) is accompanied by the development of pathological conditions (allergies, immunodeficiencies, autoimmune diseases). To prevent such disorders 2 – 3 once a year consume vitamin complexes (courses).
Popular biological products:
- Discovery Charm (Artlife, Russia). A multicomponent supplement consisting of two types of complementary tablets. Each capsule contains 3 pellets of a kind, the active elements of which are released in the “correct” sequence. Thus, Discovery Charm is a powerful immunomodulatory complex with a prolonged release of substances.
The tablets of the first formula (No. 1) contain vitamins, plant extracts, enzymes, flavonoids, minerals. The composition of No. 2 pills includes macroelements, vitamins, saponins, a chromogenic and polysaccharide complex.
The drug is used to raise the immunity at the stages of rehabilitation after past diseases, including surgical interventions, during chemotherapy courses, and also as a general tonic in the autumn-winter period.
Complex “Discovery” take twice a day: 2 tablets of the first formula after breakfast and 2 tablets of the second after dinner. Duration of admission – 1-2 of the month (depending on the state of health).
- Immunap Forte (Lec Pharma, USA). Vitamin-mineral preparation including plant extracts (astragalus, echinacea, shiitake mushroom, licorice root, Chinese magnolia vine), zinc, beta-carotene, pyridoxine, vitamin C.
Herbal Supplement is used to support immunity in the season of viral activity, in the postoperative period, with parasitic invasions, during the exacerbation of chronic diseases.
Standard treatment regimen: 1 capsule twice daily (after meals). Duration of therapy – 3 week. After 6 months, the course is repeated (if necessary). Contraindications to the use of the complex – pregnancy, breastfeeding, cardiac arrhythmia, hypertension, reception in the evening.
- Bittner Immuno (Richard Bittner, Austria). Multivitamins to increase immunity and saturate the body with essential nutrients. The complex consists of lacto-and bifidobacteria, vitamins (B, A, C, E), trace elements (zinc), plant extracts (ginseng and guarana). With regular supplementation, the intestinal microflora is normalized, healing of wounds on the mucous membranes is accelerated, mineral absorption improves, the digestive tract is restored, energy production is enhanced, and the immune status of the body is enhanced.
The drug is taken once a day for 1 capsule (in the morning). It is better not to use the supplement during pregnancy and lactation, since its effect on the fetus has not been studied. In addition, the vitamin mixture is contraindicated in cardiac rhythm disturbances, nervous excitability, hypertension, insomnia, and allergy susceptibility.
- True Balance (Now Foods, USA). The richest multivitamin complex of organic origin. The composition of the supplement includes 14 vitamins, 10 micro and macro elements, amino acid (L-carnitine), herbal extract (Gymnema sylvester).
The drug is used in the autumn-winter period to increase immunity, prevent nutrient deficiency, improve the psycho-emotional background, increase vitality, normalize carbohydrate and protein metabolisms.
“True Balance” is taken on an 1 capsule per day 30 minutes after a meal.
Remember which nutrients are better, the immunologist decides, based on health, season and place of residence.
Disruption of the body’s natural defenses when it becomes overactive and has a destructive effect on normal tissues, perceiving them as foreign, is called an autoimmune disease (AZ). Today 5 – 7% of the world’s population suffers from this disease, which usually develops at a young age and is most common among women (10 times more often) than men.
The mechanism for the development of an autoimmune disease is triggered when antibodies interact with their own antigens, destroying the cells and tissues that carry them. The result is a vicious circle. The more autoantibodies are produced, the greater the damage to normal tissues, which causes an increased release of internal antigens that increase the number of autoantibodies. The resulting autoimmune reaction is chronic and, as a rule, leads to tissue damage over a long period of time.
Examples of AZ: celiac disease, psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, Hashimoto thyroiditis, diffuse toxic goiter, multiple sclerosis, hemolytic anemia, vitiligo. Similar diseases are differently referred to as systemic, as they affect the whole system or the whole organism. Currently, the cause of the negative reaction of the immune system to its own tissues has not been identified. In this case, it is assumed that a failure in the body can cause external (severe infectious diseases, injuries, stress, hypothermia) and internal factors (gene mutations that were inherited).
One of the most common causes of AZ development is “cross-immunity”, when the infectious agent “adjusts” to the cells of the body, as a result, the immunity neutralizes the microbe while at the same time cracking down on its own cells.
If a person becomes worse after taking vitamins, macro- and microelements, amino acids, adaptogens (sea buckthorn, eleutherococcus, ginseng) – this is the first symptom of the development of autoimmune processes in the body. The health of a person, the success of treatment and even the life of a patient depend on timely diagnosis. In order to diagnose the disease, it is necessary to pass a blood test for antibodies, the type of which is determined by the attending physician on the basis of the clinical history.
Vitamins for raising children’s immunity
In a child’s body, the synthesis of its own immunoglobulins (protective antibodies) begins only by 6 – 7 years (after the completion of the formation of the immune system). However, during the formation of barrier mechanisms, the child is extremely vulnerable to bacteria and viruses. The main task of parents is to strengthen the immunity of the crumbs, as well as the study of factors that provoke failures.
The main cause of dysfunctions in the “defense” system is a prolonged lack of essential substances.
In addition, immune disorders occur against the background of the following factors:
- unbalanced nutrition;
- taking antibiotics;
- excessive psychological or physical stress;
- lack of daily regimen;
- regular sleep deprivation;
- living in an environmentally unfriendly region;
- chronic functional disorders.
The following symptoms indicate a decrease in the body’s defenses:
- frequent respiratory infections (5 – 7 once a year), re-infection with a virus (2 – 3 weeks after recovery);
- swollen lymph nodes in the axillary, submandibular, inguinal, clavicular, and cervical areas of the body;
- drowsiness, fatigue, irritability;
- diarrhea, bloating, abdominal pain;
- severe rehabilitation after illness;
- reduced concentration;
- hair loss, brittle nails;
- manifestation of allergic reactions (primary).
These symptoms, in 90% of cases, indicate the development of persistent vitamin deficiency. To eliminate which (along with a balanced diet) it is advisable to take vitamin complexes.
The most effective drugs for children:
- Jungle (Sagmel, USA). Includes 10 vital vitamins: A, B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, D3, E, C, folic acid. The composition is produced in the form of elastic chewable tablets made in the form of wild animals. The “Jungle” supplement is given to children (over three years old) with the aim of preventing vitamin deficiency, stimulating immunity, and improving the emotional state.
Preschool children (3 – 6 years) are prescribed 1 tablets per day (after meals), middle school students (7 – 12 years) – 2 tablets, adolescents (12 – 16 years) – 2 – 3 pills.
Duration of therapy – 1 month. In the autumn-winter period, the course is repeated at intervals of 2 months.
- Kinder Biovital gel (Bayer, Germany). Multivitamins to increase the barrier functions of the developing organism. The drug is produced in the form of a thick orange mixture containing a large number of air bubbles. The composition of the children’s gel includes vitamins of group B, beta-carotene, cholecalciferol, tocopherol, ascorbic acid, lecithin. Interestingly, the supplement “Biovital” is prescribed for the correction of immunity both to nursing babies (from the month 1) and adults (pregnant, lactating women).
Standard gel intake regimen – newborns up to 3 months – 2 grams once a day, babies from 3 to 12 months – 2 grams 2 – 3 once a day, children from 1 to 6 years – 5 grams once a day, schoolchildren and adults – 5 grams 2 once a day.
5 grams of the composition contains 0,15 bread units (information for diabetics).
- VitaMishki Immuno (PharmaMed, Canada). The active ingredients of the composition are sea buckthorn fruit extract, vitamins C, E, trace elements zinc and selenium. The drug has an immunostimulating, antioxidant, tonic, anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial action. The complex is produced in the form of chewing curly lozenges (bears). The additive is introduced into the daily menu of the child from three years.
The daily dose for preschoolers (3 – 7 years) is – 1 thing, for children older than 7 years – 2 lozenges.
- Children’s immuno-strengthening chewable vitamins (Source Naturals, Wellness, USA). The drug includes powerful antiviral nutrients: vitamins A, C, extracts of grapefruit, echinacea, elderberry, Althea, astragalus, meytake fungus, citrus bioflavonoids, zinc, beta-glucan, fractionated colostrum. The biocomplex is used in the autumn-winter period for the prevention of respiratory infections, beriberi and autoimmune dysfunctions in children older than 4s.
Kids from 4 to 8 are given 1 lozenges twice a day (after meals), middle school students (9 – 13 years) – 1 dragee three times a day, teenagers older than 14 years – 1 4 “chewing gum” 1 times a day.
- Figured vitamins for children with berry flavor (Now Foods, USA). Organic food supplement containing 15 vitamins, 9 micro and macro elements, 2 carotenoid (lutein and lycopene). The complex is used to support children’s immunity in the winter season, prevent asthenic conditions, prevent hypovitaminosis, and increase physical and mental activity.
Strengthening lozenges are taken daily on 2 pieces with food.
Remember, it is important to take the decision about taking multicomponent supplements for children after consulting with an immunologist.
Given that the immune system protects the body from invading alien agents, it is important to maintain its performance at a high level. To do this, you need to fully eat, monitor the state of the intestines, regularly take vitamin complexes. This recommendation is particularly relevant for children, pregnant and lactating women, the elderly, families living in the environmentally unfavorable zone. However, it is necessary to apply immunomodulating therapy correctly, based on the characteristics of your body.
Before buying a multivitamin, first of all, study the ingredient composition. This will help to identify good complexes among a wide range of medicines.
If persistent hypovitaminosis is present, it is better to entrust the choice of the immuno-strengthening complex to the doctor (to avoid overdose).
Remember, the protective functions of the body are reduced due to lack of sleep. Even a single sleepless night can damage the immune system, reducing the number of natural killer cells. In addition, to enhance the barrier properties of the body, monitor the intestinal microflora. According to clinical studies, it was found that beneficial bacteria not only improve the condition of the digestive tract, but also produce vitamins K, B, helping the immune system cope with pathogenic microbes, and maintain the health of the whole organism at a high level.