The immune system is our bodies best defense to fight flu and coronavirus this coming winter. We are therefore moving into the fall equinox with equal time between day and night. The immune system is a circulating system with some fixed structures like the bone marrow, thymus gland, spleen and lymph system. Therefore, it’s important to start preparing for the flu season with this information.
This is a good time to start focusing on our health and wellbeing, for maximum immune function before the winter. The immune system can function better when certain lifestyle choices are implemented.
Below, I will list many different ways to support the immune system but this article will focus on supplements. Always, do your own research, consult your physician and remember the supplements listed are just suggestions.
Generally, improving immune function has to do with all over self care for the body. Minimizing alcohol, stress and making sleep a priority increases the body’s ability to care for itself. Here are some ways to prepare for the upcoming flu season.
ELIMINATE EXCESS SUGAR
White blood cells are your bodies defense mechanism against bacteria and virus’. Studies have shown, while consuming excess sugar decreases white blood cell effectiveness by 50%.
6-8 hours of regular sleep helps to reduce inflammation, aid in recovery and assist the body’s ability to deal with stress.
Regular exercise promotes hormones that improve mood, stabilize blood sugar and reduces stress levels in the body.
Excess stress hormones inhibit the body’s ability to fight off flus and colds. However, lack of stress management influences blood glucose levels, weight management and quality of sleep.
Consuming fresh, whole foods is almost always a better option to vitamin supplementation. When whole foods are not possible, for additional supplementation, vitamins and minerals are an excellent alternative. Depleted soil, and lack of fruit and vegetable consumption can increase need for supplementation. Below is a short list of supplements to help boost immune system function.
- Vitamin D – It is hard to get the amount of vitamin D you need on a daily basis from food sources. Exposure to the sun is the best source however if you live in the northern hemisphere and also the winter months this is a challenge. Vitamin D is beneficial for bone health, cardiovascular fitness and regulation of metabolism. The supplement, vitamin D3 is the best source and should be taken with Vitamin K2.
- Vitamin C – Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that protects cells from free radical damage caused by oxidative stress. As a result, vitamin C helps to protect the body from inflammation, increase iron absorption and boosts immunity by helping white blood cell function.
- Zinc – Supplemental zinc can help to shorten the length of colds as well as proven to fight covid-19. It is a trace mineral found in beef, seafood and poultry, some legumes and nuts.
- Magnesium – Magnesium optimizes Vitamin D absorption and improves sleep through relaxation of muscles. Magnesium is beneficial to diabetics by assisting in detoxification and regulation of blood glucose levels to maintain metabolic function. Studies have shown up to 80% of the population is deficient in magnesium.
Improving immune system function is a multifaceted approach that relies on lifestyle decisions combined with supplementation, therefore, improving your health.
Certified professional fitness trainer with knowledge in specific exercise programs, diet and nutrition.