Maintaining a healthy immune system is always essential, but more critical during cold and flu seasons. A strong immune system can help combat the viruses, reduce your chances of getting sick, and mitigate the intensity of the disease.
Your Immune System
The primary function of the immune system is to prevent or limit infections, illnesses, and diseases. The system is incredibly complex and is comprised of white blood cells, the complement system, the lymphatic system, antibodies, the thymus, the spleen, and bone marrow. There are numerous types of cells throughout the body that play a role in recognizing problems, communicating with other cells, and performing their functions. When the system functions properly, it identifies threats like pathogens, parasites, bacteria, or microbes, and stimulates a response to destroy them. On the whole, your immune system does a remarkable job of defending you against disease-causing microorganisms.
Lifestyle Choices To Enhance Your Immune System
Enhancing your immune systems starts with lifestyle decisions, no smoking or vaping, drinking in moderation, regular exercise, a healthy diet, washing your hands frequently, adequate sleep for rest and recovery, and minimizing stress.
Try incorporating more fresh fruits and vegetables into your healthy diet; they’re loaded with essential nutrients and antioxidants. Foods believed to benefit your immune system include things such as:
- Citrus Fruits, which are loaded with Vitamin C
- Blueberries, with powerful antioxidants
- Ginger, may help to decrease inflammation
- Spinach, fortified with iron, and Vitamins A and C
- Dark chocolate, another source of antioxidants
- Yogurt, with live and active probiotic cultures, and fortified with Vitamin D
- Green Tea, packed with flavonoids (another type of antioxidant) and L-Theanine an amino acid
The Best Supplement Ingredients To Boost Your Immune System
Clinical research studies have shown that supplementing with specific vitamins, minerals, herbs, and other ingredients can improve immune response as follows:
- Antioxidants – to combat free radicals
- An increased white blood cell count – to help stave off infections
- Reduced inflammation
- Addressing vitamin or mineral deficiencies
We start this review with a very simple stack of products, all easily accessible as stand-alone products, perhaps offering your most “bang for the buck”:
- Vitamin C – a powerful antioxidant to protect against oxidative stress. Enhances the function of various immune cells to protect against infection. Clinical studies show that C can reduce the duration of colds. Dosage 1 – 2 grams per day.
- Vitamin D3 – many people are Vitamin D deficient, which may negatively affect the immune system. Dosage – between 1,000 and 4,000 IU of supplemental vitamin D to combat upper respiratory tract infections.
- Zinc – a mineral that plays a vital role in immune cell development and communication, and as an anti-inflammatory. Zinc deficiency is common in older adults, which affects the immune system’s ability to function correctly. Studies show Zinc may help prevent respiratory tract infections or lessen the duration. Dosage 30 mg.
Our research identified other clinically-proven ingredients that should be included in an immune-boosting regimen for optimal effects. Research has demonstrated the effectiveness of Echinacea, Elderberry, Curcumin, and Garlic for helping to support the body’s defense mechanisms in fighting off infections and viruses:
- Echinacea – an herb commonly used to address the common cold and infections. An anti-inflammatory that is thought to stimulate the body’s immune system.
- Elderberry – enhances the immune system and may shorten the duration and severity of respiratory infections. In test-tube studies, elderberry exhibits potent antibacterial and antiviral protection.
- Curcumin – a powerful anti-inflammatory, shown to improve the immune function in animal studies.
- Garlic – another powerful anti-inflammatory with antiviral properties. Although human research is limited, Garlic has been shown to enhance immune health by stimulating protective white blood cells.
- Ginger – a potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory shown in test-tube studies to improve immune health
- Oregano Oil – the compounds in oregano oil provide antimicrobial effects. In laboratory studies, this oil has been shown to kill bacteria and viruses – even cancer cells; however, human studies are limited.
Gut health plays a major role in the immune system, so taking care of the digestive tract is essential. Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts, the “good bacteria” known for their positive role in supporting digestive health. Research suggests that some strains of probiotics support immune health as well. Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium are two of the most extensively studied and commonly used probiotics.
While improving that healthy diet, you may want to add a bit of supplemental protein. Collagen peptides are a rich source of essential amino acids, necessary for detoxification, digestive health, bone and joint health, skin health, tissue repair, and improving the immune function.
Best Supplements For Immune Health
When looking for the right immune support supplement, there are some important attributes for your consideration:
- Be sure the product is manufactured in a certified cGMP facility (Good Manufacturing Practices)
- Look for the appropriate dosage for any product making structure-function claims based on clinical trials.
- Purity – look for products with no added fillers, artificial sweeteners, coloring, or flavorings. Seek all-natural when possible and Non-GMO verified.
- Transparency – products which list the dosage of each ingredient, no proprietary blends
- Independent third-party testing for quality
- Money back guarantee – a guarantee demonstrates the confidence the manufacturer has in its products
Studying the package and the Supplement Facts panel, and a little online research will answer these questions for any product you are considering.
Here a just a couple of products that adhere to our recommended attributes for your consideration.
Note: we have no bias or affiliation with the products below.
Renew Life Probiotics
Renew Life Probiotics makes it on our list of best immunity support supplements. In business since 1997, Renew Life was acquired by the Clorox Company in 2016. They earn our trust for doing business the right way. RenewLife is very conservative with their structure-function claims, and we assure you, any claims they make will be substantiated by science, or Clorox would not allow it.
Pictured here is their Ultimate Flora Probiotic for Immune Health. The product contains twenty-five-billion potent cultures and six different strains to promote natural immune function and support respiratory health. Your gut is home to 70% of your immune support, and this product supports both digestive and immune health.GET 10% OFF AND FREE SHIPPING ON RENEW LIFE PROBIOTICS
Orgain Collagen Peptides
Orgain grass-fed hydrolyzed Collagen Peptides are Paleo & Keto Friendly.
The product is sourced from pasture-raised cattle and is dairy-free, gluten-free, lactose-free, with no sugar added, soy-free, and Non-GMO. Orgain contains type I and III collagen.
Orgain was founded by a physician, a cancer survivor, who was one of the first to introduce organic products into the natural products space.GET THE BEST PRICE ON ORGAIN COLLAGEN PEPTIDES
Source Naturals Wellness Formula
Source Naturals has been a well-respected manufacturer in the natural products space since 1982. Their Wellness Formula, designed to provide targeted support for all the body’s systems associated with immunity, is an award-winning formula containing Vitamins A, C, and D3, Zinc, Garlic, Elderberry, and Echinacea. Also included in the formula is Selenium, Copper, Propolis Extract, and other ingredients known for improving immune function.GET THE BEST PRICE ON SOURCE NATURALS WELLNESS FORMULA
Final Thoughts: Immunity Support Supplements
Supplements that support the immune system can prove to be greatly beneficial for your overall health. Now you know the best immunity support supplements. All that’s left to do is choose one and add it to your routine.