Your body works hard to fight off infections, but there are things you can do to support your immune system to help keep you healthy.
Here are some of our favourite vitamins and herbs to support your wellbeing and immune health – with options to suit all the family. Many of these have both anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties, and work in a range of different ways; with some aimed at supporting defences and others to boost energy levels.
Let’s look at these nutrients in a little more detail:
Echinacea helps to bring up the white blood cell count. White blood cells are the cells of the immune system which help protect the body against infection. Studies on Echinacea show that as well as being anti-bacterial, it has anti-viral components and can help a person to recover from a viral infection.
Vitamin C slows down the progression of a virus so that a person may recover more quickly. It is important to take vitamin C for a few days after feeling better.
The “sunshine” vitamin. A lack of vitamin D can make the immune system weak, therefore, replenishing vitamin D will strengthen immunity. Vitamin D is also good to help get rid of a cough faster.
Active ingredients in elderberry surround viral cells and stop them from replicating -it can stop a cold, flu or viral infection from getting worse and give the person a chance to recover.
Garlic is anti-viral. It can also help to thin out mucous in the chest, nose and sinuses.
Zinc is tissue healing. Zinc lozenges or liquid are very good to heal a sore throat.
This would be a good base if someone’s energy is low. If a person has a bad diet, or if they don’t feel like eating much, a multivitamin will support them through the illness and help them to feel a bit more energetic and hopefully better sooner. If a person lives a stressful life or works too hard a multivitamin gives extra support.
A.Vogel Echinaforce should be mixed with a little water before drinking. It can be gargled if the person has a sore throat or ear-ache. There is also a throat spray available which sterilises on each spray and brings down swelling. In the case of a viral infection, it is good as a preventative and to help recovery during the infection.
Vitamin D comes in lots of different strengths. For the winter, 3000iu is recommended, then the person can move to 1000iu strength. If the vitamin D is for a child, give them one which is suitable for their age, this will be written on the packaging.
Elderberry often comes in a syrup. Sambucol Immuno Forte has added zinc, so it would be good for a viral infection where there is also a sore throat.
Garlic capsules have an anti-viral action and can help to thin mucous in the case of congestion. If a person is on medications such as Asprin every day or warfarin, garlic capsules are not safe. Kyolic Garlic is one of the stronger types – it’s very good for a severe cold, or chesty cough.
Zinc lozenges or liquid are better than tablets if the person has a sore throat. When the zinc makes contact with the throat, it can help to heal the infected tissue.
Not all multivitamins are equal. If a person is sick, they will need a strong and easy to absorb multi. For strength Solo Multififty is good. For easy absorbability Terranova Full Spectrum Multi is good. For both those factors together, Nature’s Plus Source of Life GOLD is possibly the best we have.
If you would like to find out more on how you can support your immune system, call in store, we would love to help you on your way to help helping your body's defences! Alternatively, you can visit the immune health section on our website.