Boosting Immunity With Supplements
In addition to eating a healthy diet with plenty of healthy fats, proteins, and green leafy vegetables, we often recommend supplementing with immune boosting supplements to bring the body's overall health and wellbeing and safeguard against possible infection. Including a list of our all time favorite immunity boosting supplements.
NAC (N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine): 2 to 4 grams a day. NAC is a powerhouse of antioxidants and a powerful protector and support for our respiratory health, thinning out and dislodging mucus caught in the respiratory passageways. NAC is needed for the body to make it's own glutathione, which is an important immune booster. Try this one.
Glutathione: 600-900 grams a day. Arguably the most powerful antioxidant and a powerful detoxifier, something which our body can create on its own- but in times of stress this gets depleted. Our body also needs NAC to make it, so low glutathione can be tied to low NAC levels. This is a good source.
Vitamin C: 2 to 3 grams of vitamin C every day to support your body's response to infection. Try this one.
B Complex: B vitamins get significantly depleted in times of stress, and are naturally very energizing to take. Aim to be taking a daily B complex which will help you meet your RDA. Foods high in B vitamins include dark green leafy vegetables, seeds, yogurt, water kefir and kombucha, eggs, and fish. If you're not having these daily-- be sure to supplement! Here's a good source.
Vitamin A: You can be getting the A you need from food sources. For A, think red, orange, and dark green colored foods: carrots, pumpkin, green leafy vegetables, tomatoes and red pepper, as well as eggs and fish oil. A healthy gut can actually produce its own vitamin K. But if you've taken antibiotics recently or don't have regular probiotics/green leafy vegetables: you may want to supplement to boost gut functioning! Try this one.
Vitamin K: A healthy gut can actually produce its own vitamin K. But if you've taken antibiotics recently or don't have regular probiotics and green leafy vegetables: you may want to supplement to boost gut functioning!
Probiotics: Aim to be getting between 20 and 50 billion microorganisms daily. Take these before meals. Aim to be getting the widest range of probiotics, including plenty of raw fermented foods such as kefir, sauerkraut, kombucha, kimchi, yogurt, coconut yogurt and tepache. Even if you are getting daily probiotics, if it's not from a wide range it's a good safety to still take a probiotic supplement. Our guts need all the help they can get in this time! We liked this one.
Zinc: If you feel a cold coming on or just want an immune boost, start with 25 mg of zinc per day for up to 5 days. Will help shorten the duration of your cold, if not prevent it. Then decrease to 5mg. Available here. You can also eat your daily RDA by chewing on pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds as a snack! Check out our video on how to include these seeds in a healthy smoothie here.
Fish oil: The healthiest fuel for our brain and our heart to run on are fats, specifically unprocessed fats found in nature and plenty of Omega-3 fatty acids, which are anti-inflammatory. To keep immunity strong and decrease inflammation, be sure to have Omega 3s. If there is one thing we can stress, it is this one! Aim to have 1 to 2 grams of high-quality fish oils (for vegans, omega 3 extracted from algae; Zinzino's Vegan Omega 3 BalanceOil, available here, is a fantastic source of omega 3's and D) daily. Be sure to source a supplement with viable levels of omega-3 fatty acids, as well as EPA and DHA, and avoid products with fillers. That's why we use this one as it's ethically sourced and contains naturally occuring EPA, DHA and bioavailable D3 (and comes in great flavors too! sprinkle into your smoothie or add to our simple to whip up and digestion boosting happy gut salad dressing)! If you're feeling like a health nut and want to get your body's omega 3:6 balance tested, try this convenient at-home blood test which is able to accurately detect your body's levels of essential fatty acids, saturated fat, and many toxic elements. Fun Fact: 95% of people fail the balance test the first time. That's because Omega 3's are rather rare to find in the diet, and mainly come from flax, chia, hemp, pumpkin seeds and walnuts, organic free range egg yolks, and the oil of fatty fish. While the plant sources of these are rather delicate and thus can't be processed or heated to high temperatures without damaging the oils, these sources that are available from our food aren't very dense in omega 3's and often times aren't bioavailable or properly absorbed and assimilated in the gut. Quality of sourcing of fatty acids is key (the conventional egg is available in the market won't likely have omega 3's so unless you have organic free range eggs the egg yolk is likely devoid in this), so supplementing with clean sourced natural oils is the best security. Read more about how to thrive with more clean fats as fuel for the body instead of sugars and have less inflammation here.
Spirulina: Spirulina has been shown to be an immune boost and even to have anti-viral properties. It's also naturally detoxifying, high in protein and boosts overall nutrition in the body due to it's high levels of chlorophyll. Dosage: about 15 grams per day. Try this one.
Echinacea: An herb that helps boost immune function, you can steep this tea and add lemon juice to keep your defenses up, or try a supplement. A note here that if you are to get sick, discontinue use of herbs such as echinacea which are meant to prevent illness and which you can resume once you do recover.
For our guide on how to boost the immune system with your food choices, learn which foods suppress the immunity as well as which ones support it here.