If you’re looking for ways to prevent infections, your first step should be a visit to the supermarket/farmers market as nothing will replace a healthy diet. Then, to help there are plenty of vitamins and botanicals that can help improve your immunity. Here are our favourites
Our immune system does so much but there's a way we can give it a helping hand with some solid nutrients and herbs that have been shown to help. You can get these from the food you eat or as a concentrated dose (from supplements and tinctures).
So what are they?
Antioxidants fight free radicals in your body. Simply put, when there are too many free radicals in the body, the free radicals can start doing damage to fatty tissue, DNA, and proteins in your body. A way to fight free radicals is by increasing antioxidants that you consume. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant.
Vitamin C also increases the absorption of iron in your body. Iron is a mineral that carries oxygen throughout your body as a part of red blood cells (so a very important job) and when your body has enough oxygen, it improves your overall health and in turn your immune system.
Foods high in Vitamin C: acerola cherry, guavas, peppers, black currants, kale, kiwi and broccoli
Often overlooked, zinc is a incredibly powerful nutrient that is very important to overall health. Zinc actively protects cells from harmful free radicals - too much free radicals is linked to weakened immune response and chronic illnesses.
This key component has become a popular treatment for the common cold. Some studies found that zinc lozenges may reduce the duration and in some case, severity of the common cold.
It's worth mentioning that Zinc reduces the amount of copper your body can absorb, and high doses may cause a copper deficiency. For that reason, we recommend that you take copper along with zinc supplements.
Foods high in Zinc: red meat, chicken, oysters, wholegrain, beans and nuts (nuts, wholegrains, beans and oysters).
I feel like I mention Vitamin D in most post and there's good reasons for that. Vitamin D is essential for your health and wellbeing. Vitamin D has anti-inflammatory properties and is crucial for the activation of the immune system's defenses.
For your body to fully absorb Vitamin D and in turns get its benefits, your bare skin should be exposed to full sun (around midday) for at least 30 minutes every day - for some people, that might be ok, but for others, that could lead to sunburn/damage. So, should you be sensitive to sun, try for 10 minutes and gradually increase over time and continue to take your vitamin D orally when needed. I personally take mine daily throughout the year.
Foods high in Vitamin D: salmon, sardines, beef liver and the SUN!
A few years ago I would have said that oregano oil was one of nature's best kept secret. Now, with its popularity having soared through during the recent pandemic, oregano oil has made its mark and is firmly a favourite in the office, and at home.
Oregano oil, in its purest form (such as in a carrier oil) is loaded with antioxidants and powerful compounds that have proven health benefits.
- Oregano may help fight bacteria
- Oregano is a powerful antioxidant which help protect the body from damage caused by free radicals
- Research has shown that oregano oil may reduce inflammation.
Best way to consume oregano oil : from a dropper under the tongue, it doesn't taste great but it's powerful stuff. If that's too much, taking it in supplements form (soft gels, capsules) is another way.