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Consuming High C and E

If you are susceptible to colds or have a cold, you should try to supplement your diet with additional vitamin C.

Consuming High C and E

If you are susceptible to colds or have a cold, you should try to supplement your diet with additional vitamin C.

Vitamin C has been confirmed by many scientific researches to be a potent immune stimulating nutrient.  It increases the production of infection-fighting white blood cells and antibodies, and increases levels of interferon (the antibody that coats cell surfaces) preventing the entry of viruses.  It also reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease by raising levels of HDL (good) cholesterol while lowering blood pressure and interfering with the process by which fat is converted to plaque in the arteries.  People whose diets are high in vitamin C have lower rates of colon, prostate and breast cancer than those with a low intake.  As a bonus, vitamin C supplementation may also reduce the severity of the common cold.

You don’t have to take in massive amounts of vitamin C to boost your immune system.  There are various suggestions, but around 1,000 mg a day seems to be a generally agreed-upon amount and one that can be obtained by eating at least six servings of fruits and vegetables a day.  If you take vitamin C supplements, it’s best to space them throughout the day rather than take on large dose, most of which may end up being excreted in your urine.

Just as important to your immune system is vitamin E, which stimulates the production of natural killer cells, those that seek out and destroy germs and cancer cells.  Vitamin E enhances the production of B cells, the immune cells that produce bacteria-destroying antibodies.  Vitamin E supplementation may also reverse some of the decline in immune response commonly seen in ageing.

In addition, vitamin E can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease.  It’s not difficult to obtain 30-60 mg of vitamin E daily from a diet rich in seeds, vegetable oils and grains, but it’s difficult for most people to consume more than 60 mg a day consistently through diet alone.  Supplements may be necessary to get enough vitamin E to boost your immune system.

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