dr. Jordanka Paskaleva, Pediatric gastroenterologist
How to protect the often ill child – is there a solution?
Children’s health comes with good immunity. The immune system fights disease-causing microorganisms. A strong immune system protects the body from disease by providing natural defenses against the disease, and a weakened immune system makes the child more susceptible to infections.
Acute respiratory infections (ARI) and gastroenteritis (GE) are one of the most common reasons why parents seek medical help. Upper respiratory tract infections (UTIs) are extremely common, especially in early childhood. This has its explanation in the first place due to the underdeveloped immune system. In addition, at this age children begin to visit children’s groups and make more frequent and long-term contacts, mostly indoors and with large groups of people. In early childhood, children get ARI between 5-8 times a year, and 10% of them get sick more than 12 times. For those of them who are ill more than 10 times, it is necessary to look more deeply for the cause. In such cases, it may be necessary to consult an immunologist, as well as conduct additional tests such as an immune status test. With increasing age, the incidence of ARI decreases and reaches 2-4 times a year. Infants are less likely to get sick due to passive immunity acquired by the mother. The development of immune cells begins in utero. The elements of the immune system are the following:
1. Phagocytes – neutrophil leukocytes, macrophages, which carry out non-specific cellular defense of the body;
2. T-lymphocytes that exercise specific cellular immunity. They form in the thymus;
3. B-lymphocytes, which through the production of immunoglobulins exercise specific humoral immunity;
Complement, which is a group of plasma and cellular proteins, destroys microorganisms and foreign cells by lysis. It is an element of non-specific humoral immunity. B-lymphocytes, neutrophils, NK cells and others are formed in the bone marrow. During intrauterine development B-lymph. do not produce antibodies. Ig G produced by the mother passes through the placenta into the fetus and thus explains the developed immunity to certain infections, measles and less common disease in children under 6 months of age. Maternal Ig A and Ig M do not cross the placenta.
When performing its protective function, the listed elements of the immune system interact and when one of the units is affected, the function of the whole system is often disrupted with adverse consequences for the body. The increased incidence of viral infections may also be due to functional immaturity of NK cells, T-lymph and dendritic cells. This explains the increased risk of developing infections in children. For this reason, measures are needed that are aimed at immunoprophylaxis. There are several groups of immunomodulators on the market – immunomodulators of bacterial origin, those containing inosiul acedoben dimepranol and immunomodulators related to natural products.
The latter group is natural, non-toxic and has a pronounced immunomodulatory effect. In this way we avoid excessive use of antibiotics. Aromania offers a product on the market: Immunoforce, which combines everything you need to maintain good immunity. The product is shown both as a prevention and treatment of the first symptoms of ARI, but also as an additional treatment for gastroenteritis due to its rich composition and the presence of zinc.
Immunofors contains: Acerola (or tropical cherry) – a fruit with a high natural content of vitamin C. In 100 g there are about 1600 mg of acidic vitamin. Vitamin C is water-soluble. Improves the work of the immune system and participates in many enzymatic processes. It is a powerful antioxidant, but it is not formed in the body. Therefore, it is necessary to take through food or as a supplement.
Vitamin C – has a beneficial effect on the health of the skin and mucous membranes. It has a positive effect on the body’s resistance to infections. It is the body’s natural barrier against the influence of external factors. Supports the absorption of iron. Improves health and contributes to the proper formation of bones and teeth.
Elderberry and Echinacea – herbs widely used in traditional medicine. Elderberry contains a number of bioactive substances: flavonoids, anthocyanins and antioxidants vitamin A and vitamin C. Echinacea is rich in glucoproteins and chicory acid. Echinacea is one of the most widely used natural immunomodulators. Echinacea reduces the severity and duration of disease by stimulating the immune system. It also exhibits antibiotic properties.
Lentinex beta-glucan * from Lentínula edodes (Shiitake mushroom), patented by GlycaNova – beta-glucan is a polysaccharide that has a beneficial effect on macrophages – cells that recognize and “absorb” pathogens that have entered the body. ® from Shiitake mushrooms It has been clinically proven that Lentinex® improves the work of the immune system by increasing the number of lymphocytes responsible for the synthesis of antibodies.
Zinc – a trace element important for the proper functioning of neutrophils and lymphocytes – key agents of the body’s immune defenses. Protects cells from oxidative stress. Favors the normal functioning of the immune system. The relationship between zinc deficiency and the frequency and severity of diarrhea has also been established, ie the intensity and duration are directly related to the level of zinc in the blood. The loss of zinc through the gastrointestinal tract increases many times with diarrhea. Serum zinc levels fall with each condition of acute inflammation.
Vitamin C and Zinc play an important role in nutrition and the immune response. The intake of vitamin C and zinc in combination is significantly more effective and significantly reduces the symptoms of runny nose. Deficiency of vitamin C and zinc severely suppresses the immune response. Zinc deficiency can cause secondary immune deficiency. Zinc salts have been shown to inhibit rhinovirus replication in vitro, they can protect plasma membranes against destruction by cytotoxic agents.