Worried about catching a cold? Make sure you take the right vitamins and supplements to help boost your immune system and improve your chances of staying healthy.
Here are some vitamins and supplements to add to your shopping list, along with an explanation of why they are so important.
Our immune system is made up of various cells that work together to protect our bodies from infections. These cells can become weaker with age, so it’s a good idea to give them a boost through vitamin supplements. Vitamin C is important when it comes to boosting your immune system. It helps white blood cells destroy bacteria in your body by neutralizing free radicals. It also reduces inflammation and may help prevent cancer growth. Try taking 1000 milligrams of vitamin C per day.
It’s important to take probiotics daily, especially if you have a compromised immune system. Probiotics help you maintain a healthy balance of microorganisms in your gut. They also support digestive health and boost your immune system by stimulating your body’s production of infection-fighting antibodies. You can take probiotics as part of an overall healthy diet or use them to fight specific illnesses such as colds, infections, or diarrhea.
This vitamin is important for immune system health, and it can be difficult to get through our diet. Fortunately, with supplements like Vitamin D3, you can simply take a daily pill and boost your immune system in no time. The key here is to not go overboard; too much Vitamin D can interfere with other nutrients. Focus on supplementing about 1000IU per day as a good way to optimize your immune system and help reduce your risk of colds and flu.
In animal studies, researchers have found that zinc boosts immune system function. If you’re feeling under the weather, try taking a zinc supplement. Stay on it until your symptoms have subsided, and then discontinue use as directed by your doctor. Those with pre-existing health conditions should not take supplements without consulting their physicians first.
Garlic & Ginger
Garlic is one of nature’s best sources of antioxidants, which help boost immune system health. When looking to improve your immune system by boosting it with supplements, look no further than garlic. Garlic contains a powerful ingredient called allicin that helps to fight off viruses and bacteria before they have a chance to take hold in your body. It also helps boost both lymphatic drainage and circulation, helping oxygen reach every cell in your body.
The herb echinacea has been known to help boost immune system function in both healthy individuals and those battling chronic illness. Its active ingredient, cichoric acid, is a potent anti-inflammatory agent that helps reduce symptoms of colds, flu, infections, acne, rashes, and even poison ivy. The active chemical compounds in echinacea have also been shown to stimulate lymphocytes (white blood cells) at much higher rates than other vitamins or supplements can.
Oil of Oregano
An immune system stimulant, oregano oil is rich in phenols and carvacrol—two compounds that help boost your immune system. Research suggests that as little as three milliliters of oregano oil a day can increase your white blood cell count (which helps fight infection) within 48 hours. Additionally, some studies suggest that oregano oil is effective at killing H. pylori—the bacteria associated with ulcers and stomach cancer.