Want To Know Which Supplements Are Scientifically Proven To Improve Your Immune System? Read On….
Germs and bacteria are all around us. Our immune system usually does a great job at defending the body against them and when it’s working properly, we don’t even notice it. Sometimes it can fail to do its job, however, and then we are at greater risk of developing infections and other health conditions
Besides the obvious lifestyle changes that will affect your immune system, like improving your diet, getting enough sleep and avoiding alcohol and cigarettes, the are number of supplements proven to help you build up your defenses.
Here are the ones with the most scientific research proven their effectiveness in no specific order:
Immune Boosting Supplement #1: Garlic
Garlic has a variety of overall health benefits including cardiovascular health, cognition as well as physical and sexual vitality. It’s ability to improve your resistance to infection has also been proven in various studies.
This study compared aged garlic extract at a dose of 2.56g daily to placebo and noted that after 90 days of supplementation there was a decrease of 61% in the number of collective sick days, a decrease of 58% in reported sickness incident and a decrease in symptom severity of 21%.
Optimal dosage: 600 – 1,200 mg daily of aged garlic extract, taken with meals
Recommended Product: Sundown Naturals Garlic – 1000 mg
Immune Boosting Supplement #2: Zinc
Zinc is one of the 24 essential micronutrients, which can be found in eggs, meat and legume products. As a natural aphrodisiac it can boost testosterone, but only if the user is deficient in zinc. It is also vital for hormone production and the immune system.
This meta study concluded that zinc intake is associated with a significant reduction in the duration and severity of common cold symptoms. However, it had to administered within 24 hours of the first sign of symptoms. When taken regularly as a supplement, zinc was shown to reduce cold incidence, school absenteeism and prescription of antibiotics in children.
Optimal dosage: There are two standard dosages. The low dosage is 5-10mg and works well as a daily preventative, while the high dosage is 25-45mg and should be taken only when at risk for a zinc deficiency.
Recommended Product: Nature Made Zinc Tabs – 30 mg
Immune Boosting Supplement #3: Vitamin C
Like zinc, vitamin C can reduce the duration and frequency of the common cold. It can also be taken as a daily preventative. However, active people seem to benefit more from vitamin C supplementation than those that do not exercise (see this study). Other benefits of vitamin C include protection against cardiovascular disease, skin wrinkling and eye disease.
Even though vitamin C can be found in many fruits and vegetables, it’s not always practical for to consume the required amount of vitamin C thorugh natural foods.
Optimal dosage: 500 – 2,000 mg daily
Recommended Product: Nature’s Bounty Vitamin C – 1000mg
Immune Boosting Supplement #4: Astragalus membranaceus
Astragalus membranaceus is a herb originally used in traditional Chinese medicine. It seems to have anti-inflammatory effects and is especially beneficial for the kidneys.
In one seven day study, 1.23g of Astragalus membranaceus taken in two divided dosages a day was shown to activate the immune system and activate T-cells to a degree higher than the reference drug echinacea.
Optimal dosage: Astragalus has a low bioavailability, so it doesn’t circulate well through the body after being ingested. That’s why the University of Maryland Medical Center suggests taking 250 to 500 mg Astragalus extract three to four times daily.
Recommended Product: Nature’s Way Astragalus Root – 470 mg
Immune Boosting Supplement #5: Spirulina
Spirulina has been shown to be effective at reducing symptoms of most nasal allergies, this includes alleviation of the stuffy nose and sneezing.
Even though further research has to determine whether spirulina directly boosts the immune system, it has been shown to also be effective at reducing liver fat and protecting the heart.
Optimal dosage: 2 g daily, taken with meals
Recommended Product: Pure Hawaiian Spirulina Powder – 16 oz
Immune Boosting Supplement #6: Pelargonium sidoides
Pelargonium sidoides a.k.a African geranium, is an herb containing compounds called prodelphinidins, which can prevent bacteria from attaching to the lungs and throat.
Supplementing pelargonium sidoides makes sense at the beginning of any illnesses characterized by dry and hoarse coughing (e.g. acute bronchitis) as it can reduce length and severity of the illness. However, research suggests regular supplementation does not help prevent illnesses.
Optimal dosage: Pelargonium sidoides supplementation should begin at the onset of dry respiratory symptoms, by taking 10 – 30 mg three times a day.
Recommended Product: Umckaloabo Extract 30mg Capsules