You have more control over your immunity than you are led to believe. If you lay the proper foundation you can strengthen your defenses to help fight off whatever comes your way. I am not here to show you the top 10 supplements to take when sick - in fact, I don't believe in overburdening the liver - especially when you are sick. Your liver is doing the best to clean your blood and need all the power to do so. If you have the basics in place, you do not need every supplement known to humankind to save you.
The best thing you can do to ward off sickness is reduce the amount of refined sugar you eat. Did you know that only 1 teaspoon of sugar can lower your immune defenses for up to 4 hours after you eat it? That's right! That means after a cookie, piece of pie, or Aunt Sally's famous chocolate fudge - you are more susceptible to catching a bug.
If you can't avoid the sweet treats - then at least moderate them and install a nutrient security system.
Let's get into what you can do to support top notch immunity naturally - through your nutrition!
1. Starting with the obvious - up your Vitamin C game. Vitamin C is antiviral, antibacterial, and antihistamine, boosts antibody production, and improves antibiotic therapy.
Eat more papaya, red bell pepper, strawberries, and oranges, plus superfoods like camu camu, goji berries and Incan berries for a Vitamin C boost.
2. Include these powerful mineral zinc and selenium to superdrive your immunity.
Eat more liver, beef, oysters, scallops, lamb, oats, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds and brazil nuts.
3. Up your Vitamin A. Vitamin A protects against infections, increases white blood cell production and supports T-cell function.
Eat more fermented cod liver oil, liver, and beta carotene-rich vegetables like carrots, spinach and kohlrabi;(note: beta-carotene is not easy for some to 1 convert to active vitamin A).
4. Grab some Vitamin D which helps decrease the severity of autoimmunity, and mobilizes the immune cells to kill more viruses.
Best sources are sunlight, liver, grass-fed butter, fatty fish, egg yolks and fermented cod liver oil.
5. Include some magical mushrooms! Best known for fighting cancer, medicinal mushrooms contain beta-D-glucan which helps support the immune system.
Most common are shiitake, maitake, chaga, reishi, and turkey tail; take them as a tea, tincture, powder, capsule or even in food!
6. Turn to plant power to boost immune support - take it low and slow with these!
Herbal favorites to explore are black elderberry, garlic, echinacea, turmeric, astragalus, goldenseal and cat’s claw.
Good immunity starts in the kitchen. Next time you hit the grocery store try to include some foods out of these 6 categories and know that you are taking steps to support your body and safeguard your health.