Looking for natural ways to boost your immune system? Here are some common foods and supplements that can help keep your healthy all year long!
Probiotics, or the “live active cultures” found in yogurt, are healthy bacteria that keep the gut and intestinal tract free of disease-causing germs. Look for a “Live and Active Cultures” seal when purchasing.
Optimal dose: two 6-ounce servings a day
Translation: 100g single serving cup = 3.52 ounces
Contains the active ingredient allicin, which fights infection and bacteria.
Optimal dose: Two raw cloves a day and add crushed garlic to your cooking several times a week. OR you can take a garlic supplement. Look for the ingredient allicin.
Your optimal dose: 200 mg taken three times per day
A prime source of zinc. Zinc in your diet is very important for the development of white blood cells, the immune system cells that recognize and destroy invading bacteria, viruses and assorted other bad guys.
Optimal dose: A 3-oz serving of lean beef provides about 30% of the Daily Value (DV) for zinc.
Zinc rich alternatives: oysters, fortified cereals, pork, poultry, yogurt, or milk
Fruits & Berries
Oranges, blueberries, kiwi and strawberries are all high in vitamin C.
Blueberries = Vitamin C – 16%
Oranges = Vitamin C – 88%
Strawberries = Vitamin C – 97%
Kiwi = Vitamin C – 154%
This antioxidant Vitamin is an immune system booster. Almonds, avocado, spinach, broccoli are examples of foods that contain Vitamin E.
Optimal dose: 15 mg per day
Whether you like to eat shellfish, lobster, crabs, and clams, or prefer to take a supplement, omega 3’s augment the activity of the cells that fight illness, and reduce inflammation, increasing airflow and protecting lungs from colds and respiratory infections.
Optimal dose : at least 600 mg of DHA (Docosahexaenoic Acid): a normal-size serving of salmon fillet has up to 3000 mg of DHA (depending on the time of year, how it’s prepared and where it came from)
This root is either used alone or with other herbs to help with aging, improving energy and stimulating the immune system during conditions such as the common cold, blood disorders, cancer and HIV/AIDS.
Optimal dose: 200 mg, twice a day (supplement)
“Zinc can be helpful for colds in two ways: First, your immune system needs zinc, so you want to be sure you’re not deficient – which is not uncommon in older people. Second, when taken as a lozenge, zinc works on the throat and can reduce the duration and severity of cold symptoms.”
Optimal dose: 8 – 11 mg per day (supplement)
Note: the last product is a zinc pill which would only be appropriate for treating zinc deficiency diagnosed by your doctor