Human Nutrition

Immunity Support

The perfect nutrients for effective immunity boosting formulas

The immune system does a remarkable job: it’s a complex system of organs, tissues, cells and cell products that fight infection or disease. It uses multiple defense mechanisms to protect our body from unwanted biological invaders such as harmful micro-organisms or viruses. To be able to work properly and keep the body healthy, it must be in balance and be able to distinguish “good” stimulants from “bad”.

Not only does a healthy immune system protect us from catching a cold, it also recognizes cancer cells and other pathogens and kills them. Part of the system is self-educating – adaptive immunity – that creates a memory of exposure to bacteria, bacteriophages, viruses and even worms. If the immune system fails, the body has insufficient protection against attacks from these pathogens. If it overreacts, autoimmune diseases or allergies can develop.

Robust immune health depends on a multitude of influential factors. Proper nutrition plays a pivotal role, as does weight, blood pressure, genetic status, stress levels, physical activity and the environment.


  • We offer a comprehensive portfolio of high quality immune health ingredients: Pronova Pure® highly purified omega-3 fatty acids, Vegapure®phytosterols and premium quality carotenoids and vitamins.
  • We are a key industry partner with a deep understanding of the global health and nutrition markets, and a wealth of experience.
  • We offer a superior quality and successful formulations for a wide range of products, which meets the highest regulatory and quality requirements, and display excellent technical properties.
  • We are always close to our customers: in our Human NUtrition labs around the world, our experts provide unmatched service in terms of concept and product development, formulation support, analysis and regulatory advice.

We offer some of the most important nutrients that contribute to a healthy immune system: vitamins A, D and E, as well as omega-3 fatty acids.

Phytosterols and carotenoids such as beta-carotene, lutein and lycopene have also have been shown to contribute to immune health. They are ideal for immune-boosting functional food and drink products, dietary supplements or medical nutrition. With more than 150 years of expertise in human nutrition, we develop innovative immune support concepts and formulations that go beyond simple vitamin C or zinc products.

Immunity Boosting Ingredients

When it comes to healthy nutrition, a robust and fully functional immune system is a key requirement for consumers of all ages. Immune support products have been successful for many years. But the more consumers know about the complexity of the immune system, the more they expect immunity boosting products to provide 360° support. Simple vitamin C and zinc supplements are no longer seen to be sufficient.

Our approach targets many aspects of the immune system. With our range of ingredients, we help companies to develop a broad array of everyday functional foods and beverages, dietary supplements and medical foods with targeted nutrient mixes for special requirements and conditions.

As the immune system is highly complex and also relies on a healthy gut flora, efficacious products are highly complex and need to be tailored to specific target groups – such as age, lifestyle, region and nutritional habits. Children have different requirements from elderly people, sports people, patients suffering from chronic diseases, heavy smokers or stressed-out managers, for instance.

In the past, many nutrients have been studied for their relevance to the development, maintenance and function of the human immune system, and have become associated with certain benefits.

These Nutrients are essential for Immunity Support

  • Vitamin A: Vitamin A is required to develop and support healthy immune function by maintaining epithelial cell barriers, supporting the non-specific innate immune function and adaptive immunity. Importantly, it regulates the gene expression of regulatory T-cells during the immune response.
  • Vitamin D: Vitamin D plays an important role in maintaining the immune system. It has been shown to improve recovery from infectious diseases such as respiratory infections, tuberculosis, inflammatory diseases such as asthma, allergies and inflammatory bowel disease.
  • Vitamin E: Alpha-tocopherol and mixed tocopherols are effective antioxidants. They help to prevent oxidative damage in cell membranes and the epithelial lining, thereby contributing to normal cell membrane fluidity and signaling, which is essential for a healthy immune response.
  • Carotenoids: Most carotenoids are able to modulate the inflammatory process and act as antioxidants. They are therefore used in many dietary supplements for immunity support.
  • Beta-Carotene: Beta-carotene has been shown in humans to stimulate lymphocytes and natural killer cells, thereby improving the cell-mediated immune response.
  • Lycopene: Clinical studies suggest that lycopene interferes with inflammatory diseases such as asthma and prostatitis. Further, it has been shown to retard prostate cancer growth by affecting immunological mechanisms.
  • Lutein: Lutein affects multiple antioxidant pathways. It is commonly associated with eye health products, but also helps to prevent oxidative stress-related conditions. Its anti-inflammatory effects have also been described in UV-light-induced skin inflammation.
  • Phytosterols: Plant sterols appear to modulate the balance between Type 1 and Type 2 helper cells in the adaptive immune system. They thereby help to suppress and regulate the immune system. Sterols stimulate the cellular (Type 1) and decrease the humoral (Type 2) immune response.
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Clinical studies show the benefits of eicosapentaenoic acid and docosahexaenoic acid (EPA and DHA) in inflammatory diseases such as asthma, COPD (chronic obstructive, pulmonary disease), eczema, rheumatoid arthritis and autoimmune diseases. EPA and DHA shift the balance of inflammatory mediators towards less inflammatory responses. The enrichment of EPA and DHA in breast milk as a result of maternal supplementation has also been shown to reduce childhood allergies. Our Pronova Pure® omega-3s are highly purified and available in a range of various concentrations and EPA-to-DHA ratios.

The Easy Way to Effective Immune Health Products

Our Human Nutrition portfolio of smart ingredients and services makes it easy to develop, produce and market immune health solutions.

According to our vision of providing the right nutrients to the right people at the right time, we have compiled an excellent knowledge base about the typical needs of many target groups. In our Human Nutrition labs, you’ll discover all the necessary support and services to help you create a wide variety of products, from functional foods and beverages to dietary supplements or medical nutrition applications. From initial concept to market launch and beyond, our experienced experts will support you along the whole journey.

Would you like more scientific or product information about our Human Nutrtion health ingredients, our labs or services? We are happy to help.

Disclaimer: Specific regulations in the respective countries on the ingredients used, for the intended use and claims made on the final product have to be observed.

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