7 Best Immune Supplements
Colder weather means more risk of sneezing, coughing, runny nose, fevers and just plain crud. Your immune system has to work harder than ever as we get into winter. Flus and viruses are more widespread, and you need all the protection you can get. Flu shots, even if they work (and I have questions about their effectiveness), only protect against one kind of virus, but you’re still at risk from illnesses such as the common cold.
Asking your doctor for immune support can be a particularly frustrating experience. The fact is that conventional medicine has nothing to offer until AFTER you are already sick. Fortunately, there are alternatives that REALLY WORK, SAFELY. Here are some of the supplements that I found most helpful in my over 40 years of practicing medicine.
This is my go-to immune support supplement. Transfer factors come from colostrum, and are meant to give the first blast of immune energy that only mother’s milk can give. This purified colostrum supplement can be taken as a daily formula and, when you feel yourself “on the verge”, ramp up the dose for a few days.
T cells, the “worker bees” of the immune system, are produced in the Thymus gland, and giving toxin-free thymus tissue is a good way of enhancing the number and activity of these critical immune cells. Again, I recommend a daily dose, and boosting the dose when one is exposed to or feels like they are coming down with something.
For many centuries the dark berries of the European Black Elder (Sambucus nigra) have been used as a potent winter tonic, and a remedy for wintertime colds and flu. Delicious tasting, it is safe for children to take as well as adults.
Immune Health Basics contains a unique and patented form of mushroom-derived beta 1.3/1.6 glucans, a natural immune booster with lots of clinical and laboratory studies supporting its efficacy. It’s particularly useful when “run down” or stressed to the point where the immune system is suffering.
I’ve used this for a long time with patients who are first getting sick. It has proprietary forms of echinacea, hydrastis (goldenseal), Oregon grape (Mahonia) and berberine. All of these herbs are potent immune fighters in their own right, but together they form a particularly strong immune support formula.
The immune-enhancing herbs astragalus and Andrographis are the stars of this multi-faceted formula. Animal studies suggest that astragalus supports Natural Killer cell activity, while a double-blind placebo-controlled study of Andrographis supports its role in immune function enhancement. Reishi mushroom extract round out this super formula.
On the go? Throat scratchy? Try a spray or two of this formula containing the “magic” ingredient bee propolis, which is actually made up of over 300 different natural ingredients, made to help combat stress, boost immunity, soothe the mucous membrane linings, and give a boost of energy.