5 Evidence-Based Supplements to Support Immune Health
A year and some months into the COVID pandemic, people are more concerned than ever about their immune health. Your immune system is what fights off bacteria, viruses, and other pathogens that cause infection and disease. If your immune system is compromised, this means that it isn’t working at optimal levels. In turn, you’re at a higher risk of getting sick.
Want to learn how to boost immune health during these trying times? Aside from washing your hands, masking up, and following other CDC guidelines, taking a few key supplements can also help to keep you safe.
Here are five evidence-based supplements that have shown to be highly effective in supporting immune health.
Zinc is a mineral that is commonly added to all sorts of healthcare products and supplements. It's essential for immune system function, which is why it's one of the go-to minerals for boosting the immune system.
Zinc is needed for cell development as well as cell communication. It also plays a role in inflammatory response. The mineral protects tissue barriers and prevents foreign pathogens from entering.
Zinc may also shorten the length of colds if taken within the first 24 hours of symptoms appearing.
When combined, quercetin and zinc are an immune boosting powerhouse. Quercetin is a zinc ionophore, which means that it shuttles zinc into cells throughout the body, which is where viral replication takes place. By combining zinc with quercetin, zinc is more effective and can better prevent viral replication where it begins.
Quercetin is also a strong anti-inflammatory agent and scavenger flavonoid. COVID-19 and other SARS like coronavirus infections may cause an excessive immune reaction. Quercetin may be effective in reducing or preventing prophylaxis while also serving as a potential treatment for the virus.
3. Vitamin D
Vitamin D, better known as the sunshine vitamin, is produced by the skin after being exposed to sunlight. Vitamin D occurs naturally in select foods, including egg yolks and certain types of fish.
While vitamin D is best known for its role in strong teeth and bones, the vitamin also fights disease. Studies have found that vitamin D may reduce the likelihood of developing the flu.
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, vitamin D may also play a role in reducing the severity of effects of the virus.
A research study conducted at the University of Chicago Medicine found that higher than average vitamin D levels may lower the risk of infection. The study also found that having a vitamin D deficiency may increase the risk of testing positive for the virus.
A separate study involving patients found that more than 80% of those diagnosed with COVID-19 were deficient in vitamin D.
Over the last few years, turmeric has been in the spotlight for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. The root, which is closely related to ginger, has been used for centuries in Ayurvedic medicine.
Curcumin, the main active ingredient in turmeric, has shown great promise for boosting the immune system. It may also lessen the risk for severe side effects caused by COVID-19.
Research has found that curcumin may work to stop viral replication by blocking attachment to host cells. Curcumin may also be effective in decreasing the severity of the cytokine storm.
This is when the immune system overreacts to an infection and generates harmful inflammation throughout the body. Because of its strong anti-inflammatory properties, curcumin can calm the immune system, which lowers the production of cytokines.
5. N-Acetyl Cysteine
N-Acetyl Cysteine (NAC) is an antioxidant that is commonly used to treat flu, cough, and other lung conditions. It’s most important role in the body is its role in creating and replenishing glutathione.
Glutathione is known as the master antioxidant because of its ability to neutralize free radicals that damage cells and tissues throughout the body. It’s essential for immune health and for preventing cellular damage. Research has found that the antioxidant may even play a role in longevity.
Studies have shown that a vast majority of people who experience the most severe effects of COVID-19, as well as those who died, had low levels of glutathione.
Chiropractic Care Helps Address Added Stress from Pain and Injury
There’s no better time than now to prioritize your immune health. When your immune system is weakened, you’re at a greater risk of getting sick and feeling less than your best.
Perhaps one overlooked aspect of your immune health is the negative impact of stress. Stress can come in many different forms but perhaps one of the most common is pain. Neck pain and back pain are extremely prevalent. When you are struggling with these types of problems, they can add unnecessary stress to your system.
Align Integrated Medical offers a unique and modern approach to solving the most common functional health problems. Our goal is to fix patient’s health problems once and for all instead of providing symptom relief, which is just a temporary solution.
By using fundamental medicine, we incorporate chiropractic care, regenerative and functional medicine, progressive focused rehab and massage therapy to pinpoint and solve the underlying causes of common chronic health problems.
A healthier you is possible! Contact us today to learn more about how our services can help you feel your best.