“The human immune system is a complex defense system involving multiple organs and specialized cells and tissues”
Market researchers project that the market for immune health supplements, which is now flourishing, will reach $28 billion by 2027.
Despite what dishonest marketers may claim, miracle potions do not exist, and there are no drinks with effective secret formulations for boosting immune system activity.
In fact, according to studies, vaccination against certain diseases is the only effective strategy to boost immunity.
Eating a well-balanced diet and staying physically active in general are the best ways to increase the efficacy of the immune system through nutrition.
If beverages are a part of a wider, nutritionally sound strategy, then using them to improve immune system activity may be beneficial.
Do they work?
Experts note that malnutrition is a significant cause of poor immune function. Regularly consuming drinks that contain vital nutrients may play a role in preventing illness and helping people recover from it.
Nutrients the body needs for the immune system to develop and function appropriately include:
- Protein: Protein and the essential amino acids play a vital role in supporting the immune system’s ability to withstand and recover from an attack by infectious agents.
- Fish oil: Research suggests fish oil may help reduce inflammation.
- Vitamin A: Vitamin A helps support the immune functions, such as the mucous cells lining essential organs and the body’s ability to make antibodies in response to specific infections.
- Vitamin D: Vitamin D stimulates the immune system and helps the formation of immune cells. A lack of vitamin D has links to a greater risk of autoimmune diseases.
- Vitamin C: Vitamin C supports the body’s ability to produce infection-fighting white blood cells.
- Probiotics: Sometimes called “the good bacteria,” these beneficial microorganisms promote a healthy digestive system.
- Catechins: Derived from plants and found in green tea, may help the immune system function.
A balanced diet containing a wide variety of vitamins and minerals is essential for immune function. Additional nutrients that support the immune system include:
- vitamin E
- vitamins B-6 and B-12
Drinks to try
Drinks are essential for preserving health. The immune system can be greatly strengthened by simply staying hydrated.
The vast and varied parts of the immune system, in particular, require water for the body to function properly.
For instance, the mouth and throat are the first lines of defense for the body, but they are not as effective when a person is dehydrated.
Immune-suppressing beverages don’t always have to be fancy, expensive, or blended.
But they should be minimal in sugar and devoid of caffeine. The best place to begin is with water. From there, consumers can select more sophisticated beverages based on their preferences and needs.
Drinks that improve one’s general health include tomato juice, which is a strong source of vitamin C, and green tea, which is high in catechins.
Smoothies are an excellent way to get a lot of nutrients into one drink. For instance, individuals can incorporate the following components into smoothies:
- protein, which is in nuts, seeds, soy, and dairy products
- vitamin C, which is in oranges, strawberries, and tomato juice
- vitamin A, which is in spinach, carrots, and apricots
The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine recommend this smoothie. In a blender, combine the following ingredients for one minute, or until as smooth as desired:
- 1 peeled orange
- 1 cup grapes
- 1 peeled banana
- 1 cored pear
- 1 cup soy, almond, or rice milk
- 2 cups fresh kale or spinach
- ice cubes (optional)
Although health experts are not very likely to recommend using drinks to boost the immune system, there are proven steps individuals can take to support their immune function.
- Handwashing: Frequent handwashing will support the immune system by removing potential contagions.
- Not touching the face: Keeping the hands away from the face keeps germs away from the mouth, nose, and eyes, where they can enter the body.
- De-stressing: Cortisol, a hormone the body produces when it is under stress, may interfere with the immune system.
- Eating a healthful, well-balanced diet: Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables and avoiding processed foods that are high in fat and sugar may help keep the immune system strong.
- Getting plenty of sleep: It is essential to give the body time to rest and recuperate. Researchers think that lack of sleep may have detrimental effects on immune function because it interferes with the circadian rhythm.
Additionally, the immune system evolves with time. Children under the age of five have undeveloped immune systems and high nutritional requirements for healthy growth.
Although their immune systems will be completely formed by the time they reach adolescence and adulthood, their habits might not be ideal for good health in general.
Although older persons have built up a significant immune system, it may not be as robust.