Boost Immune System with Lauric Acid from Palm Kernel Oil
The immune system is the cells and other biological structures as defense in the organisms to protect their body from external biological influences by recognizing and killing pathogens. There are many microorganisms around us. With the immune system, our bodies can find out for themselves which microorganisms are harmful, neutral, or can help the organs.
A strong immune system can protect and kill bacteria and viruses that cause various diseases from the first time they get into the body. The immune system also has several components that are integrated each other with a quite complex performance to carry out their function to protect that body. Therefore, having a strong immune system as a defense for the body is one of the very important to prevent various dangerous diseases. Moreover, positive cases of Covid-19 in Indonesia are still increasing with an average of 4 thousand cases per day and until now there hasn’t been a vaccine or drug to treat the Corona virus.
Boosting and maintaining immune system can be done by consuming foods that contain high vitamins, minerals, fiber, protein and antioxidants. One of the foods that are rich in nutrients that can be utilized by the body during a pandemic is palm oil. Palm oil is rich in vitamin A, vitamin E, and other antioxidants which are important for maintaining the immune system. The palmitic acid that contains in palm oil also plays an important role in providing protection to the lungs.
The benefits of palm oil in the health apect, especially uring a pandemic, are not only limited to vitamins and palmitic acid, research from the Indonesian Oil Palm Research Institute (IOPRI) has generate the latest innovation about lauric acid, which is also able to boost the immune system.
Lauric acid is a saturated fatty acid that is formed naturally and very useful as an anti-bacterial. Usually, it’s mostly comes from coconut oil, but it can also be found in palm kernel oil. If lauric acid consumed, it will convert into monolaurin which can help boosting the immunity to fight harmful pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi so that it helps the body to prevent infection and disease.
Indonesian Oil Palm Research Institute (IOPRI) since last year has developed a product based on lauric acid from palm kernel oil to prevent children’s stunting. However, since Covid-19 break in Indonesia, the IOPRI research team began researching the benefits of lauric acid from palm kernel oil for immune system.
Dr. Frisda Rimbun Panjaitan as a researcher at IOPRI revealed that the immune system very affects the production of immune inflammatory protein cytokines which is have a function to ward off viral infections, so that it is one of the preventive measures taken to reduce the level of spreading the infection of the Coronavirus.
Referring to reviewed data and journals from laboratory results of COVID-19 patiens, it shows that there are very contrasting differences in the number of white blood cells (leukocytes), the number of lymphocytes, neutrophils, blood creatinine, C-reactive protein (CRP), IL-6, IgG, IgM and IgA. These parameters are fully controlled by the immune system.
Immunomodulatory research has been started since March 2020 until now with the research goal of obtaining scientific data on IL-10 which can modulate the immune system with the intake of immunomodulators based on lauric acid. Through this research, IOPRI wants to initiate that palm oil and palm kernel oil can be developed as immunomodulatory materials to modulate the immune system as a preventive action for infection virrusses.
With the results of research that has been done by IOPRI, it’s expected that the inovation can be develop into a pilot project and then the product can be commercialized. So that, this product becomes a form of palm oil-based products differentiation, that help humans to fighting the Coronavirus.
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