There is an increasing number of health claims and the promotion of supplements has also increased in the coronavirus frenzy. There is a lot we don’t know and a lot we do. It’s important not to go overboard and be sensible. Let’s start with an overview of the vitamins, minerals, and herbs you need and why they are important. When we open we wil have these and more supplements at our clinic. Our Naturopathic Doctors are also available for a consult to discuss how these might benefit your family, you can book an appointment with them for a supplements consult here.
Multivitamin/Mineral: This is the foundation for any health support regimen. It’s a good way to cover the basic vitamins and minerals your body needs for day-to-day functions. If you aren’t on a good multivitamin you should get and stay on one. Look for a high-quality, broad-spectrum multivitamin and mineral.
Vitamin D3: Adequate vitamin D status is critical for optimal immune function and this cannot be achieved without supplementation during the winter months. Studies have shown that people with vitamin D deficiency are 11 times more likely to get a cold or flu, while supplementing with vitamin D can reduce colds and flu by 42%. It is best to get your levels of 25-OH vitamin D checked for accurate dosing. Blood levels should be above 30 ng/ml, however, optimal levels are probably closer to 50ng/ml for most. Many need 5,000 IU or more of vitamin D3 a day in the winter. Start with 2,000 IU for adults, 1,000 IU for children. We will be providing tests that allow you to get your Vitamin D level checked.
Buffered Vitamin C: The role of vitamin C in supporting the immune system has long been known. Take 500-1,000mg throughout the day with meals and snacks.
Zinc citrate: You can take an additional supplement or consume more foods high in this powerful immune-supporting nutrient. Seafood—especially oysters—red meat, and pumpkin seeds are the best food sources. Take 30 mg per day.
Probiotics: A healthy gut flora supports a healthy gut, a major barrier against pathogens and integral to the immune system. Look for brands that offer several species of good bacteria and contain at least 5-10 billion organisms per capsule. Lactobacillus plantarum and spore forms of Bacillus are the best for immunity.
Fish Oil (Arctic Cod Liver Oil): This old-time remedy for good health and robust immunity still stands true! In addition to the good fats, this cod liver oil contains additional vitamins A and D for added immune protection.
1-3, 1-6 Beta Glucans: Research has shown that these compounds up-regulate the function of the innate immune system. This part of your immune system is the first line of defense against viruses and bacteria. It helps your white blood cells bind to and kill viruses and bacteria. Note: Patients with autoimmune diseases should not take this.
Natural anti-viral herbs: Many herbs have broad-spectrum antimicrobial effects or immune-enhancing effects. Formulas contain different immune boosters such as astragalus, green tea extract, andrographis, and monolaurin.
Mushroom Extracts such as reishi, maitake, shiitake, turkey tail, and cordyceps: These provide immune-supporting properties. Cooking with medicinal mushrooms like shiitake is also helpful.
Theoretically beneficial supplements. The ways in which these products work may provide some benefit for prevention and treatment. Potentially beneficial ingredients include quercetin, resveratrol, curcumin, rosemary, Asian ginseng, alpha-lipoic acid.
It is not necessary to take all of these. Just starting with a multivitamin, vitamin D3, vitamin C, zinc and fish oil is a great start. If we all stay calm, avoid the pandemic of fear, follow our common sense, and take care of ourselves and our families we can weather this and dramatically reduce sickness and death. But we have to come together (at least 6 feet apart!) as humans, and as a society to combat this pandemic. Above recommendations are not meant to provide medical advice and any changes should be done in consultation with your healthcare provider.