One of the best ways to increase our body's defenses is through the use of immune system supplements.
Ideally, we would only need healthy foods to maintain health.
Unfortunately, traditional farming practices have stripped away most of our soil's nutrients, leaving the food supply "nutritionally challenged."
Supplementation becomes even more critical if you consume a lot of pre-packaged, highly processed foods that offer little nutrient value.
Refined sugar is the worst offender.
Not only is it nutritionally void, it actually pulls nutrients from the body to metabolize it. So technically it's an anti-nutrient and should be consumed sparingly. More on this on my Sweeteners page.
So, what supplements should you be aware of? Some you will recognize, I'm sure. But there are other gems out there that I bet you've never heard of. So let's get to it.
What comes to mind when you think of supplements to improve the immune system?
First, let's narrow it down a bit and just think about vitamins to support the immune system.
I know vitamin C is on your list. True, it is a powerhouse nutrient and it certainly deserves to be on the list of immune system vitamins. But what about the other important vitamins for immune system health?
Click on the each of the vitamins below to learn more about how you can use them to improve your health.
Okay, let's move on to the minerals. Any idea what minerals strengthen the body's defenses?
This is perhaps a more difficult question. Zinc is probably the most recognized mineral for immune system health.
Curious as to the others? Check out this list of minerals that benefit your immune system.
Time for the amino acids.
Yep, that's right, I said amino acids. Bet you didn't know that some of these protein building blocks are great immune boosters!
Check out information about which amino acid supplements will improve your immune system.
These two very similar terms tend to cause a little confusion.
PRObiotics are beneficial microorganisms, the good bacteria, that live in our intestinal tract (acidophilus is probably the best known). They are key players in supporting our immune system health. These little guys also keep our intestines healthy, promote digestion, and make certain nutrients.
PREbiotics are "food" for the PRObiotics (remember PRE comes before PRO). Prebiotic immune system supplements such as fructooligosaccharides (or FOS) allow the friendly bacteria to multiply, crowding out the hostile bacteria that make us sick.
These critically important supplements benefit not only our immune system, but are essential for our digestive health.