Our immune system serves as the body's defensive system and plays a crucial role in helping it fight disease and illness while, at the same time, promotes overall wellbeing. It is made up of an interconnected network of cells, organs, and tissues that work in unison throughout the body.
Our focus in this article will be immune system supplements which can help us achieve very stable evergreen health, without catching a cold and flu.
Though the immune system is the body's protector, it's not indestructible and can be damaged by poor lifestyle choices, pollution, and diet. Eating healthy, exercising regularly, and getting enough sleep are some of the ways that you can help improve immune system function.
However, consistent, high-intensity exercising could stress the body, weakening your immune system. Some supplements can promote and support your immune system, boost your overall health, and improve your immunity.
Why Should You Consider Taking Immune System Support Supplements
With our bodies constantly exposed to bacteria, stress, viruses, and toxins, our immune system can be left susceptible to attacks.
There are even people who could develop other immunodeficiency disorders from things like malnutrition, chemotherapy, exposure to radiation, severe burns, and diabetes.
Benefits of Immune System Supplements
Immune-boosting supplements are an effective way to help the immune system function optimally. They could be antiviral and antimicrobial, and may help regulate and stimulate the system, fight oxidative damage, and reduce inflammation plus so much more.
We all can benefit from consuming some of the best immune system support supplements since they do a great job of enhancing how the body protects itself.However, it is important to note that there are people who may need more powerful immune-boosting supplements.
Who Can Benefit from Immune System Support Supplements
People who do high-intensity workouts regularly can enjoy great benefits from some of these supplements. Intense workouts, particularly endurance training, could cause immunosuppression because of physiological stress.
The best immune-boosting supplements could help rejuvenate the body.
2) Aging Adults
The effect of aging can devastate the immune system – as we age, our immune systems become even weaker.
3) Those Living In Urban Environments
The chances of people living in urban areas experiencing physiological stress are quite high, considering all the noise, toxins, and pollution they are exposed to every day.
These factors, coupled with sedentary lifestyles and high population densities in urban areas, have a negative impact on the immune system.
4) People Who Take Antibiotics
The antibiotic medication works by killing harmful bacteria in the body; however, they could also kill some of the good bacteria that the body needs.
This could leave you susceptible to contracting bacterial infections and other illnesses.
5) People with Allergies
An allergy is when your immune system overacts to something. Allergic reactions often happen when the body notices foreign substances as threats prompting the immune system to attack them.
They are usually characterized by irritation, runny nose, watery eyes, redness, swelling, etc.
10 Best Immune Supporting Supplements to Take
What Are Probiotics?
Probiotics are living bacteria that play a crucial role in digestive health. Probiotics help digest foods in the intestines and to balance internal pH. These bacteria are also known to discourage the growth of bacteria that could harm your health. The great thing is that these bacteria occur naturally in our bodies.
However, they can also be found in some probiotic foods like tempeh, kefir, sauerkraut, yogurt, kimchi, and so much more. The bacteria can also be consumed as supplements in the form of tablets, liquids, capsules, and freeze-dried powders.
How Probiotics Support the System?
Probiotics boost the immune system by strengthening the intestinal lining, which keeps harmful microbes at bay. It's a known fact that 70% of the entire system is situated in the gut.
Therefore, it is essential that you keep your gut's health at optimal levels to promote immune system function. According to a New Zealand study, athletes who took probiotics had lower chances of contracting colds compared to those who received a placebo.
The best time to take probiotics is at night or in the morning when stomach acidity levels are low. This also helps ensure that a majority of probiotics in your system survive and make it to your intestinal tract.
It is important that probiotic supplements are stored away from direct heat, air, and dampness to them to stay alive.
Possible Side Effects
Probiotics are well-tolerated and generally safe immune-boosting supplements.
Nevertheless, there are people who could experience some gastrointestinal side effects like bloating, gas, and diarrhea. This is why probiotics are in our list of the best immune system support supplements.
What Is Echinacea?
Also known as Coneflower, Echinacea is a flowering herb that's native to openings in savannas, woodlands, limestone glades, thickets, and black soil prairies. These environments are often found on the east side of the Rocky Mountains in the US.
Echinacea is one of the most common herbal supplements in the US, and Native Americans have been using Echinacea for 400+ years.
How Does Echinacea Support the Immune System?
The plant contains a ton of active compounds that are known to provide antiviral, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant effects, and which fight pain. Its properties make it a powerful and effective immune-boosting herbal supplement.
Its numerous benefits make it an effective immune booster as well as an all-rounded health supplement. The supplement not only improves immunity but also boosts overall health in more ways than one.
Great Echinacea supplements may be taken with food or without at any time of the day. This herbal supplement is available in extracts, tablets, capsules, and tinctures. You could also drink the herb as a tea. For dosages, check the label on the bottle.
Side Effects of Echinacea
This herbal supplement is considered safe and well-tolerated. However, it could have side effects in some individuals, including stomach pain, vomiting, nausea, etc.
3) Astragalus Root
What Is Astragalus Root?
The roots are harvested from the Astragalus plant, also known as Huang Qi or Milkvetch. It is a leguminous plant with roots that have medicinal properties.
The Chinese have used the astragalus roots for centuries to boost their immune system. The Astragalus root has powerful antioxidants that can stimulate and enhance the immune system.
How Does Astragalus Root Support the Immune System?
The Astragalus root can be found as an herbal supplement called Adaptogen. The supplement is known to normalize and boost the immune system as well as improving the body's capacities to cope with stress.
Many of the benefits of the astragalus root can be attributed to three active compounds - saponins, flavonoids, and polysaccharides. The saponins aid with the cardiovascular system, the flavonoid works as potent antioxidants while the polysaccharides are antiviral and antimicrobial properties.
Taking Astragalus Supplements
You can get the astragalus root supplements in the form of capsules, tablets, tinctures, and teas, among other options.
You can take the supplement during or in-between meals, the best being twice a day - in the morning and evening. Check the instructions label to know the correct dosage.
The Side Effects of Astragalus Root
Astragalus supplement is considered a safe herbal product. Nevertheless, some people can develop some reactions to the supplements that may include digestive problems and irregular blood pressure, among other issues.
4) Vitamin C
What Is Vitamin C?
Vitamin C is an antioxidant vitamin that is soluble in water. We cannot synthesize (produce) vitamin C, so we get this nutrient from our food. We can get it in various colorful vegetables and fruits such as leafy greens and citrus fruits.
The body depends on Vitamin C for growth and repair, production of collagen, neurotransmitters, and L-carnitine as well as protein metabolism.
Lack of this vitamin in the body will lead to various symptoms that include dry and splitting hair, slow and inadequate tissue repair (healing), dry skin, and gingivitis.
How Does Vitamin C Support Body Immunity?
Vitamin C is a supplement you can take to fend off immune system deficiencies. Lack of Vitamin C means a weak immune system, and this increases the risk of contracting diseases.
According to research, only 70% of Americans meet the Vitamin C requirement in their bodies. The vitamin also offers other health benefits, and that is why it is categorized are an essential vitamin making it a top consideration for immune support supplements.
Taking Vitamin C Supplements
You can take Vitamin C as is different dosages during or in-between meals. How much of the supplements you can take depending on your gender, age, and condition.
However, you should use the supplements as per the manufacture's or doctor's instructions.
The Side Effects of Vitamin C Supplements
Vitamin C does not trigger any significant reactions in most people. It is generally safe, a water-soluble vitamin that the body excretes when it gets excess of it; thus, you cannot overdose on the supplements.
Even so, fatigue, cramps, and chest pain are some of the side effects some people may experience, but they are very rare to occur. This is why vitamin c comes as one of the best immune system support supplements.
What Is Turmeric?
Turmeric has a bright yellow color and is one of the most common spices used in various world cuisines, especially in Indian curries. The spice can also be used as a health supplement because it has excellent anti-inflammatory properties and various health benefits.
Taking a bit of turmeric serves your body with a powerful immune support supplement that offers other notable health benefits.
How Does Turmeric Support the Immune System?
The finding of clinical trials done on curcumin show that it can modulate the immune system helping to bolster the body's natural defenses against illnesses and disease-causing pathogens by also enhancing the response of antibodies.
However, research on the various acclaimed benefits of turmeric regarding the immune-boosting benefits is still ongoing, though the active compound - curcumin - shows prodigious promise.
Taking Turmeric Supplements
As a spice, turmeric is a widely available product that you can buy at your local food store or market and use for cooking. But you can reap much of the benefits of the spice when you consume it in the form of turmeric pills.
Most of the pills or capsules also contain black pepper extracts meant to enhance the efficacy of the supplement. Remember to read and follow the dosage and user instructions on the product back label.
The Side Effects of Turmeric Supplements
Taking turmeric supplements will not pose any significant health concerns. However, some people may develop issues ranging from stomach upsets and nausea to dizziness.
What Is Elderberry?
Elderberries are harvested from scruffy looking shrubs known as Sambucus Nigra (Elder Bush) that grow in waste grounds, woodlands, and embankments.
The flowers and berries of these bushes have medicinal properties and have been used for centuries for therapeutic and curative purposes. Elderberries have higher antioxidant content than cranberries, blueberries, blackberries, and goji berries.
How Does Elderberry Support the Immune System?
The berries and protect the body from bacterial infection and other potential damages that can affect the immune system. The potency of the elderberry antioxidants makes them effective at counteracting the effects of aging on your immunity, which makes them potent immune system boosters.
The berries can protect, regulate, and support the immune system in various ways. Elderberry supplements are a well-rounded option for boosting your immune system.
Taking Elderberry Supplements
You can take the elderberry products in various forms, such as syrups, ground dried flowers, liquids, standardized extracts, tinctures, and lozenges, among others.
Read the instructions on the label on the supplement product to know the proper dosage. Do not eat undercooked or unripe elderberries.
The Side Effects of Elderberries
Elderberry as safe for consumption though some people may develop some reactions to them with gas, nausea, and diarrhea being among some of the side effects.
What Is Ginger?
Ginger is a plant that has roots that have anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties, and this herb deserves a place in our Top 10 list of the best immune system support supplements.
It's also a spice that is popular with people from around the world, and it has been used in Arabic, Chinese, and Indian medicines for hundreds of years. Gingerols and shogaols are what the compounds are called in ginger.
How May Ginger Support the Immune System?
Inflammation is caused when the immune system reacts. Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties that might help inflammation that causes both pain and stiffness.
Ginger also has antioxidants benefits, which can benefit the immune system. In fact, one of the best supplements you can take for your immune system is ginger.
Ginger can be consumed in various forms, such as ginger pills, extracts, dried ginger root, and teas, to name a few. Ginger can be taken without food or with food. Just make sure you take ginger by the instructions on your supplement.
Also, raw ginger can be consumed, but it has a strong flavor and might cause you to experience a burning sensation in your mouth.
Side Effects of Ginger
Generally speaking, ginger is safe to take. Most people can tolerate it, but some people may experience bloating nausea and gas. A burning sensation in the mouth might be experienced, too, if you consume raw ginger.
What Is Ginseng?
Ginseng is a plant that looks like a strawberry plant. It produces red berries, which first grow like flowers. The root of the plant has been used for thousands of years in ancient Chinese medicine.
How Ginseng May Help the Immune System?
Ginger may help reduce cortisol, which is a stress hormone, and it might help improve how the body responds to stress.
Cortisol can wreak havoc on the immune system, and it can reduce your ability to remain energized and to fight off sickness. Ginseng may help the body produce more immune cells in the blood.
Ginseng comes in many forms, such as liquid extracts, capsules, pills, and powders, to name a few.
As for dosage amounts, follow the instructions on the label of the supplement you buy. Also, speak with your doctor before consuming ginseng.
Most people can consume ginseng with no problems. However, some might find themselves struggling with sleeping. Some may experience nervousness, while others might have an allergic reaction.
9) Vitamin D
What Is Vitamin D?
Vitamin D is found in various types of food, but the body produces it too. The vitamin is produced when the skin is exposed to UV rays. This is why some people call Vitamin D the sunshine vitamin.
Many people don't get enough Vitamin D, and this is because of things such as their diets, lack of sun, and where they live. If you don't get enough of it, you might experience various symptoms.
This includes asthma in children, a higher risk of cardiovascular disease, depression, and anxiety, to name a few.
Vitamin D And the Immune System
There are receptors for Vitamin D in immune cells. This means Vitamin D is important to the immune system, and low levels of it have been associated with an overactive immune system and a higher risk of infection.
Since there are a lot of people who don't get enough Vitamin D, this is a good way to boost your immune system. If you don't receive enough Vitamin D, then this immune booster might be for you.
Consuming Vitamin D
This vitamin is fat-soluble, which means it is good to take with a source of fat or food. However, you don't have to consume it with food.
Dosages vary from person to person. It really depends on where they live, how old they are, and what gender they are.
Vitamin D is generally safe to take if you are taking the right dosage. Most people quite tolerate Vitamin D, but large dosages might cause unwanted side effects.
These side effects may include headaches, weakness, sleepiness, and tiredness, to name a few.
What Is Myrrh?
It is a resin that is sap-like, and it comes from a tree that is found in the Arabian Peninsula, Ethiopia, Somalia, and the Eastern Mediterranean.
For hundreds of years, it has been used in herbal medicine. It's also been used in oil and fragrances.
Supporting the Immune System
It is an antioxidant that can protect the immune system from the effects of aging. It also has anti-fungal and antibacterial properties.
Furthermore, it can be used as a mouthwash and as aromatherapy, which is one of the reasons why it is popular.
It can be used as an aromatherapy scent or topical oil, but it is available in supplement form.
Topical oils are usually used to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles and to help wounds heal. Some people use it as aromatherapy to help them reduce stress.
Generally speaking, Myrrh is safe, but it is important to use it as directed, or you might experience a few side effects. However, do not consume it in large amounts.
Some people may experience diarrhea when they use Myrrh. When applied to the skin, a rash may develop, but usually, it will go away within a short period.