It's time to ramp up your immune system! 80% of our immune system is in our guts, and includes helpful biome (probiotics) which need to be fed a diet of insoluble fiber (prebiotics) as well as the ability for our GI tract to properly digest and absorb what we eat to the highest nutritive capability. Here are some great suggestions for you to PUMP UP YOUR IMMUNITY!
Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV), specifically raw and with the "mother" can be used instead of expensive probiotics. In addition to providing positive microbiome, ACV assists in keeping the correct pH throughout the digestive system. Other good sources of probiotics include kombucha tea, kefir, yogurt (only with active, live cultures), miso, and active culture sauerkraut.
Cod Liver OilFull of healthy Omega-3 fats, and in the perfect ratio to Omega-6s, cod liver oil is a true top dog in your immune system arsenal, and it's incredibly anti-inflammatory to boot!
AntioxidantsVitamins E, C, CoQ10, Glutathione, and Alpha-Lipoic Acid are the primary players to ensure active replacement of the missing electron in free radical cells which mess with our DNA and can have many biological harmful effects. Eat fresh, clean proteins, fats, and unprocessed carbohydrates (fruits, vegetables, whole grains) for these important nutrients!
Immune System Vitamins and Minerals
Vitamin C - A powerhouse antioxidant and immune system booster found in many fruits and vegetables.
Vitamin D - Often deficient especially through the winter months, this prohormone and sterol assists in many functions and deficiency can cause brain fog, moodiness, hormonal imbalances, and a compromised immune system. Must be supplemented through the winter.
Selenium - A component of the powerful antioxidant glutathione, selenium is immune stimulating and cancer fighting. Eat 2 - 4 brazil nuts for your daily allowance. Can also be found in crimini mushrooms, eggs, garlic, meat and poultry, nutritional yeast, seafood, whole cereal grains (oats, barley, rice).
Zinc - Antioxidant mineral with the most enzymatic functions within the body, including immune stimulating, wound healing, DNA synthesis, and cell growth. Best sources are Oysters, red meats, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, mushrooms, eggs, ginger root, legumes, lima beans, nuts (soaked are best), nutritional yeast, all seafoods, turkey, wheat germ, whole grains.
The blues, purples, and some red colors of foods from plants, flavonoids fight free radicals, reduce inflammation, and enhance Vitamin C effects among many other important functions!
An important amino acid that has been found to literally attack viruses. In addition to colds, it is used to control herpes-simplex outbreaks. The richest sources of L-lysine are animal proteins such as meat and poultry, but it is also found in dairy products, eggs, and beans. To support your immune system supplement 1 gram 2 - 3 times/day.
Astragalus, Ashwaganda, Rhodiola, Eleuthero Root, Schizandra, Asian or Korean Ginseng - Adaptogens work where the body needs them and help the body's response to stressors. They are great to help to build up the immune system when your constitution is feeling weakened due to long days inside, illness, surgery, or other deprivation and disruption.