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Vitamins That Strengthen Immunity

Vitamins A, B, C, and D are some of the primary nutrients that strengthen the immune system. Allied to lifestyle, they can be acquired through food or supplementation.

The human body is a complex and robust machine that can protect us against diseases, foreign agents, and even against our cells once they become malignant, as in the case of cancers. This defense mechanism is called the “immune system,” composed of cells and organs that, among their functions, can keep our body protected.

Immune system cells are present in:

– tonsils

– Lymph nodes

– spleen

– Peyer’s patch in the small intestine

– Appendix

– Bone marrow

– Lymphatic vessels.

However, it is known that lifestyle habits can influence the immune system, making it weaker or stronger. Some of the key pillars are:

Restful sleep: Nowadays, resting seems like a luxury, doesn’t it?! Replenishing energy is one of the most important healthy habits since, while we sleep, the power that during the day is destined to carry out activities becomes directed to the metabolism and immune system. Experts explain that the opposite can also happen: sleepless nights decrease the production of defense cells, negatively impacting the immune system.

Physical activity: In addition to preventing cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, cancer, and depression, practicing physical exercises regularly and moderately minimizes inflammation in the body, improves blood circulation, and promotes the increase of lymphocytes, responsible for the immune response and defense of the body. Defense cells, in turn, can destroy pathogens more easily.

Healthy eating: Keeping a menu away from inflammatory items such as sugar and processed foods – considered the villains of today is essential. The ideal is to make daily meals that contain all food groups. According to experts, some nutrients stimulate white blood cells, responsible for the body’s defense. Are they:

Vitamin A

This vitamin acts on cell renewal and offers extra protection against infections. It can be acquired by consuming broccoli, sweet potatoes, avocados, and orange vegetables such as carrots, mangoes, and papayas).

Vitamins of the B complex

Vitamin B6 acts in regulating immune responses to various diseases. Its lack impairs immunity because it minimizes the proliferation of lymphocytes, reducing the antibodies produced by the body. B9, on the other hand, is associated with the body’s resistance to infections. This vitamin makes the body more susceptible to diseases when consumed in low amounts. In addition, vitamin B9 is essential for Treg cells, which act in our defenses.

Vitamin C: 

Popularly known for its presence in citrus fruits, such as orange, tangerine, acerola, lemon, pineapple, and passion fruit, vitamin C helps in the maturation of immune cells. In other words, this means that these cells become more resistant to infections. These fruits also contain antioxidants, fibers, and flavonoids, considered powerful anti-inflammatory drugs capable of strengthening the cardiovascular system.

Vitamin D: 

Considered one of the primary nutrients involved in immunity, vitamin D can be acquired in two ways: either through moderate sun exposure, for about 20 minutes a day, or through diet – which represents 20% of the exogenous supply. Among its benefits is worth highlighting reducing the risk of respiratory infections, such as Covid-19. It is estimated that 80% of Brazilians are deficient in vitamin D, so consuming fish, milk, dairy products, eggs, and mushrooms are good alternatives.

Supplementation: An Extra Health Dose

However, when food alone cannot meet such needs, it is time to think of a “plan B.” When indicated by a professional and individually, nutrient supplementation promotes quality of life and strengthens the immune system.

In the case of vitamin D, one of the most sought after on the shelves, it can be supplemented through capsules or drops and is most often sought after by elderly patients or those who live in temperate climates. Cod liver oil is also a vitamin D – rich ingredient, available off-the-shelf in capsule form.

Vitamin C is well known for its effervescent form. 1g of vitamin C per day is recommended to supply the necessary levels and enjoy its benefits. However, this vitamin is present in other presentations, such as capsules or syrups.

The supplements, easily found on the shelves, can also be developed exclusively, considering the needs and individuality of each patient.


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