Vitamin C is a remarkably versatile nutrient. It plays an important role in a wide range of different systems and processes in your body. From helping heal cuts and bruises to supporting your adrenal glands when you're under a lot of stress…
It is clear: A possible vitamin C deficiency should be remedied as soon as possible since this vitamin contributes to many different bodily functions. This vitamin is best known as a superstar among immune system supplements – and there are good reasons for this association!
How vitamin C directly supports your immune system
Ascorbic acid – the scientific name for pure vitamin C – has been shown to support a large number of immune mechanisms in your body. For example, your white blood cells are an important part of your immune system.
You have different types of white blood cells, all of which help to fight disease-causing viruses and bacteria in some way. This essential vitamin helps stimulate both the production and function of many of these types of white blood cells.
It also helps your body produce important antibodies. Antibodies are proteins that bind invading microbes and then neutralize them. And the powerful antioxidant properties of this vitamin also help protect certain white blood cells from the toxic substances they produce in their fight against pathogens.
In other words; vitamin C is an essential nutrient for the healthy and effective functioning of the immune system. It is not for nothing that vitamin C against the coronavirus is used by numerous medics.
The immune system benefits go much further
However, your immune system is not a simple set of cells that works isolated from all other body processes. Instead, it is a complex network of interconnected organs, cells, and processes.
In addition, various other functions of your body influence how well your immune system can do its job. And vitamin C – also called ascorbic acid – also plays a role in many of these functions.
For example, your skin and mucous membranes are the first lines of defense of your body. A cut or damaged skin can become a gateway for bacteria that cause infections. Vitamin C helps your body to produce collagen – a key protein in the skin that you need for proper wound healing.
Your adrenal glands also play an important role in your body – for example, with an eye on reducing and tackling stress. Your adrenal glands use a significant amount of vitamin C each time a stress response is triggered. This may be one of the reasons why you're more likely to catch a cold if you're stressed.
In addition to vitamin C, you can also use supplements with vitamin D to strengthen your immune system. However, always do this in consultation with your GP or dietitian.