With all the craze going on right now I wanted to write a quick post with a few suggestions of ways to boost your immune system. My nurse brain is always looking for ways to improve my families health and give us the best possible chance to avoid unnecessary illnesses. We went through some tough years of sicknesses. It felt constant and every time someone caught a bug all five of us would get it. Since implementing some changes a few years ago I noticed a big shift. We have had our healthiest year yet. When one drops we don’t all drop, and if one gets sick it seems to run its course quicker than in the past and with more mild symptoms.
Also, this past September I broke my foot playing soccer and had a ligament injury. When I was told I most likely needed surgery but had a slight chance of not I chose to take that chance. I immediately started doing additional research on the best things to put in my body to aid in healing. Being a nurse I can’t help but think about how my body is reacting to things on a cellular level and wanted to make sure I was fueling and giving myself the best possible chance at recovery. I’m happy to report that I ended up not requiring surgery and soared through physical therapy. I also had the healthiest fall/winter I have ever had. As did the rest of my family.
This isn’t a miracle concoction by any means but I promise it helps!! Our winter wasn’t without any illness, myself and one of my daughters just finished getting over the flu this week but it amazes me that our other family members didn’t get it. Also, my symptoms were bad but I was still able to function and I was feeling significantly better in just three days. I continued to fuel myself with all these things while I was sick and I noticed a huge benefit. I would wake up feeling awful and about an hour after taking the things I’m about to share I felt much better.
Before getting the flu we had an almost completely sick-free fall and winter. The kids had zero sick days from school, my son still hasn’t had any. I almost always get at least one cold or sinus infection during the winter as does my husband and we have both stayed very healthy this year and I really do think the supplements and vitamins we have been taking have helped tremendously!
Below you will find simple ways to help boost your immune system and feel your best. They can prevent you from getting sick or worst case if you get sick it will help your body fight the virus or infection off quicker and your symptoms will be more mild. Even once this virus chaos is behind us these vitamins will be an essential part of your daily routine. Lets get right to it so you can get all this goodness in you soon! Click on any of the links or images to go directly to amazon.
- The first one I’m sharing is my favorite one! This liquid zinc has an insane amount of benefits and barely tastes like anything. I add it to my lemon water in the morning. A friend of mine shared this product with me (thanks Amy!!) that a wellness doctor had told her was great to take everyday and it really is! Think zinc like the zinc swabs you can use when you first get a cold, zinc in cough drops etc. It’s no mystery that zinc is a HUGE help to boost our immune systems however I was unaware it came in liquid form which is a much quicker way to get it where it needs to go! I was also unaware of the many other pros to taking this daily. A few of the big ones: it helps support our immune system and endocrine system, helps decrease anxiety and stress, regulate appetite, supports healthy skin and hair and helps clear skin! There are several other pros as well if you aren’t convinced take a few minutes to do some googling and you will see what I am talking about! I’ve taken it every morning since my injury in September and I can say it definitely holds up to the reviews, there were a few mornings where I woke up with a scratchy throat and knew I was about to get sick and it went away by the end of the day. My husband started taking it as well and he will tell you the same things! There are only a few left of the specific brand I buy at the moment so hurry and order one. There are several other brands as well if you have to buy another kind just make sure to read reviews first. This will be a staple in our house for life.
- A multivitamin! Are you taking a multivitamin? Your husband? Kids? This is a simple and great way to help boost your immune systems. Multivitamins aren’t necessary if we are eating a well balanced nutritious diet but I would argue the most of us are not able to do that every day even if we want to which is where the vitamin comes in. Of all the vitamins I have tried for myself and kids Smarty Pants are my absolute favorite. I take the women’s ones and these for my kids. If your kids have any trouble staying consistent with going to the bathroom they make an option with fiber that I used to give my kids and it absolutely works at getting them regular. And there are these are for the men. I have felt a big difference in myself since switching to this brand of vitamins, the reviews speak for themselves. All of the vitamins contain omega 3’s which I will talk more about in a bit but most of us are deficient in them. Unless you and your children eat a ton of fish you probably are too. They play a large role in our immune system so a multivitamin that has omega 3s is so beneficial. You can always take it on it’s own but they don’t taste very good.
- Vitamin C– This one is one we all know helps with our immune systems. It helps stimulate and produce our white blood cells (which is what fights off viruses and bacteria) as well as produces antibodies an extra effort at protecting us. The one I take is sold out so I linked another one with good reviews. I started taking one of these on top of my multivitamin after my injury because our body needs a lot of it to help heal and boost our immune system. This would be a great vitamin to add to your daily intake, it really is essential.
- Vitamin D3- We all hear about this one as well but not sure we correlate it as much as we should to our immune systems. We think about it being related to the sun and boosting our energy and mood which it does but it also plays a HUGE role in keeping our bodies healthy and strengthening our immune systems. If our vitamin D is low we are more susceptible to infections. Majority of us are deficient in vitamin D due to being mindful of staying out of the sun and wearing hats. Even sunblock can affect our vitamin D consumption. I actually had blood work drawn over a year ago when I had unexplained low energy and the one result that came back low was my vitamin D level. My Doctor wasn’t surprised and stated that most people are. I have been taking additional vitamin D since and extra when I had my injury. On top of helping my immune system I will say it definitely increases my energy level as well. An extra bonus!!
- Elderberry– Yes there is a lot of uncertainty about this one. Is it just a fad or does it really help? I will say based on the research I did and my kids health this year I think there is a strong correlation. Elderberry contains high amounts of antioxidants and vitamins that boost the immune system. Elderberry isn’t something that is in our diets either so if we aren’t taking it regularly we will miss out on its goodness. I would definitely recommend both you and your kids either taking elderberry gummies or the syrup daily to help boost your immune systems.
- Omega 3s (also known as DhA and Fish Oil)- This is one of the reasons I buy the smartypants multivitamins because it has the added omega 3s in them. If your multivitamin doesn’t I would suggest taking an additional omega 3 (fish oil) vitamin. Omega 3s are vital for boosting our immune system to aid in fighting and healing. Other ways I like to sneak it in is I buy eggs with DHA and milk with DHA two things my kids consume a lot of. You will find peanut butter and tons of other foods having it added now because it’s important for our bodies. I didn’t link any plain omega 3 vitamins here because the ones I’ve tried in the past are gross so I would say switch your multivitamin to smarty pants or another multivitamin that includes omega 3s.
- Plenty of Rest & Lots of fluids! We are all familiar with both of these being important but it’s easy to forget. Make sure you are getting good sleep -recommendations say at least 7 hours a night and the most important sleep are the hours before midnight. Don’t wait until you are sick to sleep, start sleeping more now to keep your body strong. Also don’t wait until you are sick to up your fluid intake- start getting in the habit of drinking more now to flush out toxins and keep your body in a state of hydration where it functions best. Water is the best choice for hydrating but if you get tired of it try adding fruit or drink coconut water. I start my day with 8oz of water with half a lemon squeezed in it and my liquid zinc and I can feel the difference all day versus when I used to drink coffee first. Lemon helps rid the body of toxins, helps with clearing skin and so many other great benefits! Start adding a bag of lemons to your weekly grocery list- it’s around $4 and you’ll feel the benefits!
Here is an overview of my daily intake of these supplements.
- First thing in the morning I drink 8oz of water with half a lemon squeezed and 2 droppers full of zinc liquid (this is the recommended daily dose)
- After quick breakfast I take 3 smarty pants vitamins plus one elderberry, vitamin C, and Vitamin D
- In the afternoon or after dinner I take the other 3 smartypants vitamins
- If I’m feeling under the weather or am sick I’ll take an extra C, D and elderberry
It is that simple! Smartypants recommends 6 vitamins as an adult serving and they have never upset my stomach but I don’t like to take too many at once since I also take the others.
For my kids I give them each 2 smarty pants vitamins plus 1 elderberry in the morning after breakfast. If they get a cold or we have a sickness in the house I’ll give them an additional 2 smarty pants in the evening and a second elderberry.
I hope this advice gives you a good place to begin at improving your overall health and boosting your immune system. They are all things you can easily add to your daily routine and the sooner you start the better. Your body will thank you for it all I promise! I pray all of you stay safe and healthy during this time and that these simple changes make a lasting impact!
Love & Prayers,