Our immune systems take a beating over the course of our lives, not just as we age beyond 50, but in all sorts of situations, including illness and infection.
Under these circumstances we could be considered to be suffering an acute immune system overload. This means that briefly our immune systems are very limited in what they are able to do. After this brief spike our immune systems bounce back fully. It is normal for this bounce back to take longer as we grow older.
In addition, as we grow older spontaneous allergies and autoimmune conditions may appear where they did not exist before. Maybe we aren’t digesting food so well and some substances irritate our guts. Whatever the case, you may find you suddenly have an allergy to something to which you previously never had an allergy before.
To fight all this, there are vitamins and minerals that can support our immune systems.
By supporting our immunity, we reduce the chances of both infections and autoimmune conditions. We essentially help our bodies stay fighting fit!
Here are some vitamins to include in your self-care kit.
Vitamin A is amazing for balancing our immune system. Some immune-boosting supplements can make inflammation or autoimmune conditions worse. Vitamin A helps regulate the immune system, thus fighting illness and autoimmune issues at once. Enough vitamin A can fight UTIs, skin problems, and gut imbalances.
B vitamins support our immune system. They do this by supplying our cells with the energy they need to do their job well. This includes our immune cells.
B vitamins also help fight the effects of stress from mental or physical activity. This ensures we are comfortable and our mood is elevated.
When it comes to preventing illness, little beats vitamin C. Vitamin C is often praised for its illness destroying abilities, but the reality is that it works its magic before the illness strikes.
Firstly, because vitamin C is an antioxidant, it helps reverse free radical damage. This means that our immune cells are better able to fight off illness. In addition other cells in our body are better able to defend themselves in the event of an attack from a foreign invader.
Secondly, vitamin C helps with the absorption of iron, which is essential for carrying oxygen and nutrients to cells.
Did you know vitamin D supports your immune system? It has both anti-inflammatory and immunoregulatory properties. It is crucial for the activation of immune system defenses.1
By ensuring cells receive everything they need to stay nourished, we prevent the sort of environment that encourages infection and illness in the first place.
When we are deficient in any vitamin, we are putting our bodies under stress. Our bodies need some of every vitamin to function properly, and the cravings we get when we are deficient in a vitamin are a signal to a sort of stress or deficiency.
So, it is a good idea to ensure you have a full compliment of vitamins, both from foods and supplementation. When in doubt, talk to your doctor about measuring your serum vitamin levels and possibly supplementing.
Until next time!
Yours in health and wellness,
Francine Alleyne (RHNP™)
Holistic Nutritionist, Registered Holistic Nutrition Practitioner™
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DISCLAIMER: Please consult your healthcare practitioner if you are experiencing any symptoms. I am not a doctor. This post and anything else you find on my website is intended for informational, educational and self-empowerment purposes ONLY and is not intended to treat or diagnose any condition or disease.
1Bivona G, Agnello L, Ciaccio M. The immunological implication of the new vitamin D metabolism. Cent Eur J Immunol. 2018;43(3):331-334. doi:10.5114/ceji.2018.80053