There are certain times of year when your immune system could use an extra boost. Here are our recommendations for 3 supplements you can take to support optimal immune function.
Vitamin C is one of the most widely-known supplements for immune support. It acts to protect immune cells and helps to support their function. It also plays a major role in collagen synthesis and acts as an antioxidant. Because vitamin C is water-soluble, the body does not store large amounts of it. This means that regular intake of vitamin C is necessary through diet and/or supplementation. The best dietary sources of vitamin C are citrus fruits, bell peppers, strawberries, broccoli, cantaloupe, tomatoes, and brussels sprouts.
It is estimated that 88% of the population receives less than optimal levels of vitamin D. Although the body naturally produces vitamin D through sun exposure, the sun is often not strong enough to meet the body’s needs. Vitamin D is necessary for proper immune and inflammatory function. It also plays a role in maintaining proper bone integrity, proper neuromuscular function, muscle strength, proper calcium absorption, and normal blood pressure. Studies have shown that individuals with lower vitamin D levels are more likely to report cold symptoms like sneezing, runny nose, and congestion. The best dietary sources of vitamin D are fatty fish, eggs, cheese, mushrooms, and fortified products like milk and cereal.
Zinc is necessary for over 100 enzymatic reactions in the body and affects our immune function in several different ways. Studies show that it is needed for the development and function of our white blood cells, which regulate the body’s inflammatory response. Zinc acts as an antioxidant, which decreases tissue and cell damage. Zinc is also needed for collagen synthesis. Research shows that zinc supplementation promotes healthy immune response. The best dietary sources of zinc are red meat, poultry, oysters, beans, and nuts.
Stamford Spine partners with Thorne® to offer our patients high quality supplements at a discounted rate. It is important to keep in mind that supplements should be taken at specific doses that vary from individual to individual. In addition, certain supplements can interact with medications. Please speak to your chiropractor or another healthcare provider for more information before starting a new supplement. Please contact our office with any questions.