Does supplementing with a mineral and vitamin complex affect the immune response and susceptibility to infection, and if so – how?
This was the topic of a year-long study involving practically healthy subjects aged 50-65. Regardless of whether the subject had a nutrient deficiency, by supplementing a small dose of micronutrients (equal to 100% of a daily dose) their number of sick days was reduced, as was the susceptibility to respiratory infections, antibiotics had to be used less frequently, and improved effectiveness of flu vaccinations was also observed. The number of immune cells also increased significantly and this increase was most distinct with the subjects who had initially been found to have a deficiency of one or more nutrients. Furthermore, the researchers found that in order to alleviate deficiencies, there is no need to take a mega dose, as it is sufficient to take 100% of the recommended daily dose of micronutrients. The subjects of the study, who had initially been found to have a deficiency of one or more nutrients (43.2% of all subjects), no longer displayed signs of the deficiencies after six months of supplementing with a 100% RDD of multivitamins. In turn, overly large doses of micronutrients deplete immunity1.
1 Chandra RK.Nutrition and the immune system from birth to old age.Eur J Clin Nutr. 2002 Aug;56 Suppl 3:S73-6.