10 Immune System Boosters - Part 2

Earlier this week, we brought you part 1 of our Immune Boosting Series which we hope you found useful in getting a head-start on your health and boosting your immune system.

In Part 2 of the series, we will delve in deeper into different compounds and supplements which you can look at incorporating into your diet.

 

1.   Resveratrol

 

Resveratrol recently came to popularity after research demonstrated its high content in red wine.

You may have also heard of this as the powerful antioxidant found in grapes.

What Is Resveratrol?

It is a plant compound that is found concentrated in the skins & seeds of berries & grapes.

It is the component in red wine that gives its reputation for being good for you.

Resveratrol is a potent antioxidant – it has also demonstrated Anti-Viral & Anti-Bacterialproperties in test tube studies & mice.

The human clinical trials utilize high doses which you can not get from regular food or wine intake.

5 Benefits of Resveratrol:

  1. May Help Lower Blood Pressure
  2. Positive Effect on Blood Fats
  3. Positive Effects on Longevity & Lifespan in Animals
  4. Protects Your Brain - Slows Age-Related Decline
  5. Supports a Healthy Inflammatory Response

Recommended Daily Dosage

250mg - 1000mg

 

2.    Quercetin

 

Quercetin is a pigment found in many of the fruits & vegetables we eat such as onions, apples, grapes and berries.

It is a vital antioxidant that helps your body fight free radical damage.

This is important in preventing us from developing serious ailments.

Quercetin is a flavonoid that binds to & neutralizes free radicals - you can think of it as a helpful mosquito sucking out the bad stuff from cells.

If we eat fresh fruit we eat anywhere from 10mg - 100mg of quercetin each day.

For maximum health benefits, scientists recommend 500mg – 1,000mg per day.

5 Benefits of Quercetin:

  1. Boosting Immunity
  2. Strong Anti-Oxidant
  3. Promotes a Healthy Inflammatory Response
  4. Aids with Exercise Performance
  5. Supports Brain Health

Recommended Daily Dosage:

500mg – 1,000mg

 

3.   ZINC

 

Zinc is an essential nutrient that we just don’t get enough of, in our modern-day diets.

Our bodies don’t produce it naturally, so we rely on getting our zinc purely through dietary intake.

Zinc deficiency can cause severe immune system dysfunction - affecting T helper cells, which compromises health.[1]

Zinc is crucial for the multiple aspects of the immune system:[2]

  • Development & functioning of Innate Immune Cells, Neutrophils & Natural Killer Cells
  • Macrophage functioning - phagocytosis, intracellular killing & cytokine production
  • Growth and function of T and B cells i.e. the adaptive immune response

Zinc is essential for:

  • Immune Function
  • Wound Healing
  • Growth & Development
  • Gene Expression

It is found in plant sources, but is most abundant in animal sources such as beef, shellfish & eggs.

Zinc is found in every cell of our bodies & is the 2nd most abundant trace mineral after iron. Zinc is necessary for over 300 enzymes that help with your metabolism, digestion & nerve function.

It is also required for your sense of taste + smell. A zinc deficiency can reduce taste & smell.

unfortunately, it is not very bioavailable.

5 Benefits of Zinc:

  1. Support a Healthy Inflammatory Response
  2. Help Boost Immunity
  3. Reduce Your Risk of Age-Related Decline
  4. May Improve Acne or Skin-Related Issues
  5. Help with Wound Healing

Recommended Daily Dosage:

11mg for men & 8mg for women

 

4.   Olive Leaf Extract

 

Olive Leaf Extract comes from the leaves of the olive plant & is one of the reasons why those who live in the Mediterranean live long healthy lives.

It is also one of the reasons why the Mediterranean diet is popular to promote longevity.

The active ingredient that helps people live healthy long lives is the polyphenol Oleuropein.

It is thought to contribute to the anti-inflammatory & antioxidant effects of eating olives.

Oleuropein & derivatives such as Elenolic acid have been effective in vitro & animal studies against many microorganisms:

  • Influenza
  • Retrovirus
  • Parainfluenza 3
  • Bacteria[3]

It is specifically good for the respiratory tract and has shown positive effects on the common cold in animal + in vitro studies.

The extract interacts with respiratory viruses’ proteins, inhibiting replication & infectivity.

5 Benefits of Olive Leaf Extract:

  1. May Help with Fighting Infection & Viruses
  2. Boost Immunity
  3. Promote Cardiovascular Health
  4. Support a Healthy Inflammatory Response
  5. May Aid in Supporting Weight Loss

Recommended Daily Dosage:

500mg – 1,000mg

 

5.   Elderberry

 

Elderberry is found in abundance in the British countryside in late summer & early autumn.

It is a small purple-black berry that hangs from elder trees.

If not cooked properly these can be poisonous, as they contain cyanide!

Originally used by Native Americans & Ancient Egyptians to treat infections & improve complexion.

In Folk Medicine, elderberries were used – and still are used– to treat influenza, infections & dental pain.

They are high in Vitamin C with as much as 35mg per 100g of fresh berries.

5 Benefits of Elderberry:

  • May Improve Cold & Flu Symptoms
  • High in Antioxidants
  • Support a Healthy Heart
  • Fight Harmful Bacteria
  • Support a Healthy Immune System

Recommended Daily Dosage:

As a novel supplement there are no specific guidelines

Should be followed according to manufacturer.

 

6.   Vitamin D3

 

Vitamin D3 is more effective than Vitamin D2 at raising overall blood levels of Vitamin D.

Our bodies produce it when our skin is exposed to sunlight. It can only be found in animal food sources such as fatty fish, egg yolks & liver.

5 Benefits of Vitamin D3:

  • Promotes Strong and Healthy Bones
  • Enhance Physical Strength
  • Boost Immunity
  • Promotes Absorption of Calcium
  • Increases body Vitamin D levels most effectively

Recommended Daily Dosage:

400 – 800IU

 

7.    NAC

 

N-Acetyl Cysteine is a semi-essential amino acid (our body can produce it from other amino acids).

It is found in most animal food sources such as chicken, turkey & eggs - also in sunflower seeds & legumes.

NAC is crucial because it replenishes the most powerful antioxidant in your body, glutathione, which is essential for immune health.

In studies, it has been shown to play a crucial part in regulating glutamate.

Glutomate is one of the most important neurotransmitters in your brain.

5 Benefits of NAC:

  • Helps with Detoxing
  • Promotes Healthy Respiratory System
  • Replenishes Glutathione
  • May Stabilise Blood Sugar

Recommended Daily Dosage:

Follow Manufacturers / Doctors Guidelines

 

8.   Rosemary Extract – Rosemarinic Acid

 

Rosemary is a herb native to the Mediterranean region it possesses potent antioxidant properties.

Carnosic acid is the antioxidant, which is present in the plants leaves.

5 Benefits of Rosemary Extract:

  • Nervous System Protection
  • May Help Decrease Viral Load & Inflammatory Responses
  • High in Anti-Bacterial & Anti-Microbial Compounds
  • Help Maintain Healthy Blood Sugar
  • Promote Healthy Digestion

Recommended Daily Dosage:

Positive effects have been noted at 750mg

 

9.   Boswellia Serrata

 

Boswellia Serrata is a special type of Frankincense.

It is an important plant shown to have immune regulating properties.

The active ingredient Boswellic Acid, affects the immune system in various ways.

Several pharmacological properties have been identified including its use as an Anti-Inflammatory & Anti-Microbial.

In Indian Ayurvedic Medicine, Boswellia is one of the most valuable herbs you can find.

It contains 4 major compounds:

  • B-Boswellic acid
  • Acetyl-B-boswellic Acid (ABA)
  • 11-Keto-B-boswellic Acid (KBA)
  • 3-O-Acetyle-11-keto-B-boswellic Acid (AKBA)

KBA is the most potent anti-inflammatory. It has shown potential in the joints, airways and digestive tract.

5 Benefits of Boswellia Serrata:

  • Potent Anti-Inflammatory
  • Protects Gut & Skin
  • May Boost Cognitive Function
  • Support Joint Health & Function
  • Control Healthy Blood Sugar

 Recommended Daily Dosage:

300mg – 500mg

 

10. Garlic Extract – Allicin 10%

 

Garlic is part of the allium (onion) family. It is grown in most parts of the world.

Garlic extract has been used for centuries by the Egyptians, Babylonians & Romans to help with a variety of ailments.

Allicin is the sulfur compound in Garlic that exhibits potent health benefits.

The sulfur compounds are able to enter your bodies through the digestive tract & travel to where they are needed most.

5 Benefits of Garlic:

  • Combat the Common Cold
  • Promote a Healthy Blood Pressure
  • Maintain Healthy Cholesterol Levels
  • Boost Neurological Health
  • May Help Detoxify Heavy Metals

Recommended Daily Dosage:

4g (1-2 cloves) per day for adults

 

11. High Quality Green Tea Extract

(98% polyphenols, 50% EGCG & 80% Catechins)

Green Tea Extract is rich in antioxidants called catechins

It is one of the most drunk teas in the world.

Its main health benefits derive from its potent antioxidant content which helps fight oxidative stress caused by free radicals.

Within the catechins in green tea, ECGC (epigallocatechin 3-gallate) has been the most widely researched. It is shown to carry the majority of the health benefits.

A study conducted on 35 obese people showed that taking 870mg of Green Tea Extract for just 8 weeks increased their blood antioxidant capacity from 1.2 to 2.5 umol/l.

Benefits of Green Tea Extract:

  • Extremely High in Antioxidants
  • Promotes Heart Health
  • Protects Brain Cells & Neurons
  • May Help with Weight Loss
  • Immune Boosting Properties

Recommended Daily Dosage:

400 – 500 mg

 

12. Lemon Balm

 

Lemon Balm comes from the same family as mint and has been traditionally used for its cognitive & mood boosting benefits.

It is rich in polyphenols which give lemon balm its strong antiviral properties.

It could be helpful in recovery from viral infections such as the cold or flu.

The two active ingredients in lemon balm that have been shown to have the most potent benefits are citral & citronellal.

5 Benefits of Lemon Balm:

  • Aids in Healthy Digestion
  • Promotes Good Sleep
  • May Help Reduce Nausea
  • May Help Treat Cold Sores
  • Boosts the Immune System

Recommended Daily Dosage:

300mg twice a day

Sources:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6164842/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4808895/

https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Zinc-HealthProfessional/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6412187/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4848651/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6365669/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5241507/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6165352/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3309643/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3309643/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4103721/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5871149/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2277319/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9701160/

http://www.altmedrev.com/archive/publications/12/1/25.pdf

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