There is so much going around right now as we’re in the middle of winter, so it’s the most important time to take vitamins that support your immune system. Our day to day stresses actually inhibit our immune system. Things like getting too little sleep, eating too much sugar or inflammatory foods, and even stress to your body can pull your immune system down. It’s our responsibility to take charge of our health. You can only read so much about the immune system and immune system booster vitamins. At some point, you have to start to take action and start protecting yourself. I’m going to share with you exactly what’s in our medicine cabinet for not only day to day use, but for when we get sick.
Vitamin Attributes to Look For
When looking for the best vitamins and supplements for your immune system, you want to make sure of a few things.
- Whole food based: Your body absorbs a whole food based vitamin or supplement so much better. This means that it’s more “bioavailable” and that you can get more benefits from it. If you’ve ever wondered why the supplements from CVS or some other drug store don’t do what you want or maybe they even make you sick, look no further. All of those supplements (or at least most) are full of fillers and sometime don’t even contain more than 8% of the vitamin it states to contain. This is especially important with immune system booster vitamins because they help you not to get sick.
- Third Party Tested: This means that other labs, outside of then lab that created the supplement, have looked into the efficacy and tested for purity standards.
- Glyphosate Free: Glyphosate is a broad spectrum herbicide and crop spray that is highly toxic. Exposure has increased dramatically in the last 20 years because of the increased use of RoundUp in the most commonly used crop such as corn, soybeans and cotton.
**Note: None of this is medical advice. I am not a doctor. This is just what we personally do and have on hand. Please consult your doctor before using these supplements.
Things We Take All The Time
Beef Liver is a great foundation for most people. I generally recommend taking beef liver supplements in place of a regular multivitamin. Multivitamins are completely unnecessary when you see what they’re filled with. No, they’re not bad for you, but you are basically paying for nutrients that your body doesn’t need that you will end up peeing out anyway. We want to keep our vitamins and supplements as potent as possible so we don’t end up wasting our money.
I love Perfect Supplements beef liver because the efficacy and safety of their cows is of utmost importance to them. Their cows are happy and healthy, grazing on wild grass and sprouts in Argentina. Right from their website: “Perfect cows are untouched by hormones and antibiotics, and they never come into contact with chemical fertilizers, pesticides, or any other chemical contaminants. Perfect Desiccated Liver is the healthiest liver supplement for you and your family.” What a great immune system booster vitamin!
Because of the liver’s function of expelling toxins, it holds nutrients and minerals, so it is one of the most nutrient dense foods you can eat. I have taken this through my pregnancies as a prenatal vitamin because it is high in folate, which is the best form of folic acid for your body. Need to know more about pregnancy supplements? Click here.
For children, I would give one capsule per day with an apple sauce squeezie (the dosage is 4 capsules).
Magnesium is an extremely important supplement to take. Most people are dramatically low in magnesium, which is not allowing their body to perform at peak function. You need way more magnesium than you think – it’s even been seen on studies that women need as much as 6000 mg and men need 8000 mg. So if there is any thought in your mind that you may be “overdoing” it on the magnesium, that is extremely unlikely.
Magnesium aids in over 300 functions in the body and without it, you can’t perform those functions with ease. Your body is basically fighting itself.
There are a few great brands I like, but they are sold out off and on, so I’m going to include all of them. Not one of these is better or worse than the other – they all have been tested for efficacy and contain multiple great versions of Magnesium.
- Seeking Health Optimal Magnesium: My code is ever changing. for January KAITJAN, February KAITFEB, March KAITMAR etc. If you need help with the exact code, let me know. I’m happy to help!
- Smidge Morning and Evening Magnesium: Use code KAIT10 for 10% off
- Amazon Magnesium
For kids, I would do a topical magnesium like this one from Earthley or this one from Ancient Minerals which you can buy directly from the Perfect Supplements website. Most kids prefer the Earthley because sometimes Ancient Minerals can burn or be itchy.
Note: There are a couple of magnesium forms to avoid as they aren’t potent and don’t do as much for the body. You want to avoid magnesium citrate and magnesium oxide. If you have been taking magnesium for some time, but feel that you’re not seeing the benefits that everyone claims, you could be making the wrong form.
Whole Food Vitamin C with Bioflavenoids
Ok, I know that’s a big word and it’s scary, but let me explain before you jump off because this is all overwhelming (I know, I’ve been there). Bioflavonoids are what’s found in the white pithy part of the orange that we always try to avoid eating. This part of the orange is actually really good for you! Vitamin C is obviously great for your immune system, but the important part here is the bioflavonoids.
- Seeking Health Vitamin C: My code is ever changing. for January KAITJAN, February KAITFEB, March KAITMAR etc. If you need help with the exact code, let me know. I’m happy to help!
- Acerola Tart Cherry Powder: Code KAIT10 for 10% off
Bioflavonoids help to strengthen your cell walls allowing your skin to become much stretchier. This helps with stretch marks along with strengthening your lungs (which is so important with this virus going around). They also help to strengthen your blood vessels. So if you ever struggle with varicose veins or spider veins, this will help reduce that. I have to say, I didn’t take this supplement during my first two pregnancies & I had veins pop out of both of my legs. Varicose veins run in my family and pregnancy maximizes them due to the amount of blood increase you have.
Note: Vitamin C is something that I try to get in whole food form from my diet. I try to eat things rich in vitamin C every day, but sometimes when I miss a day or feel like I need to double up, I take the supplement. As with everything else, it’s best to get things in food form. These days, it is harder to get everything you need in your diet.
Immune Collagen with Wolfberry
Collagen is great, but they take it to the next level with this Immune Collagen. It improves joint mobility and lubrication, reduces joint discomfort, and promotes healthy cartilage and connective tissue, while also reducing wrinkles from the inside out. You will get the benefits of wolfberry, elderberry, zinc and 13 superfood phytonutrients to help fill nutrition gaps. This means you don’t necessarily have to eat all those greens, but you’ll get them mixed right in with your collagen. Perfect for the person who doesn’t necessarily love eating all the fruits and veggies that they should. Note: this is not a meal replacement, but it fills in nutrition gaps.
“Whole foods based” is the most important thing to touch on here. You can find a $10 zinc anywhere at any of your local drug stores, but you’re not going to get this quality. Oysters are one of the most zinc-potent foods you can eat which makes it more bioavailable for you to use. It actually contains 10x the next most zinc-rich food available which is red meat. It is also therefore in its most natural form rather than the artificial form.
I can’t tell you the number of people that I’ve recommended this to who told me they were never able to take zinc before because it made them sick (some of them actually threw up when taking it.) From the Smidge website: “Each bottle contains the goodness of over 60 oysters that are harvested from the pristine Atlantic ocean waters in Ireland, making for the most potent oyster extract around. Our process involves slow, gentle convection drying under a low temperature to preserve bioactivity and nutrient integrity.”
If you have lost your sense of taste and smell due to a certain virus, I recommend taking these Zinc lozenges along with PQQ lozenges that may help to boost the immune system and help with cellular signaling allowing for quicker healing.
NAC is an extremely strong antioxidant that supports the immune system by fighting oxidative stress. You can’t talk about vitamins to boost your immune system without talking about NAC (short for N-Acetyl Cysteine).
- Supports respiratory health
- Liver health
- May help support the body’s natural free-radical defenses
- May help support a healthy immune system
NAC is an immune system booster vitamin because it supports the health of the liver, brain, lungs, and other body tissues. Many of the beneficial actions of NAC are related to its role in supporting normal production of glutathione, one of the body’s most important antioxidants. NAC may help support and maintain healthy brain and nerve cells. This is one reason that I take it every single day – it even helps with my anxiety. NAC’s relation to the body’s antioxidant system suggests that it may play a role in protecting against oxidative damage to neurons, which is vital to maintaining memory and cognitive function. Think of things like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. Those memory and cognitive functions are more and more important as we age, so get all of your parents on this one!
Additional Things We Take When We’re Sick to Boost the Immune System:
Some take 250mg of Quercetin as a daily immune system booster vitamin, but I find that with the other supplements, it is unnecessary for me. That doesn’t mean that it may not be helpful for you. You can find 250mg dosage here. When or if you feel yourself getting sick, I would up the dosage to upwards of 1000mg per day. Note: this is not medical advice, this is just what we do. You can find 1000mg dosage here. We took this once a day when we had the virus.
While controversial, this has been proven to be an early cure for the virus going around and it was approved for human use in the 1980s. How did we get it? We used PushHealth app which you can find here. Be aware that this is something you should make sure you have on hand before you get sick because it can take up to 10 days to get to you. If you do get the virus, by the time this gets to you, it’ll be next to useless.
We used HoneyBee Health pharmacy and it was about $200 to get the prescription. It’s on the steep end, but it was worth it to us to have on had in case someone got severely ill with the virus. We were also actually able to find a local Walgreens here that would fill the prescription for us, but not a single pharmacy in the neighboring towns would fill it. So be aware that you’re going to have a hard time getting this quickly if you need it.
Are you stressed and want to support your healthy aging processes? Do you experience a foggy head, or poor energy? What about your liver health? Glutathione is one of the most powerful antioxidants in the body and it’s something that most of us are deficient in due to daily stress. If you feel stressed, overwhelmed, not able to relax, glutathione is next on the wellness list! This is the one I like!
- Can help support the body’s healthy free-radical defenses
- Support liver health
- May help support a healthy immune system
Glutathione is an antioxidant so powerful it’s referred to as the body’s ‘master’ antioxidant. It plays crucial roles in the following detox and defense systems in your body making it one of the best vitamins for the immune system:
- Aging and stress response
- Supports healthy immune system function
- Healthy free-radical and peroxide defenses
- Normal heavy metal detoxification, including arsenic
- Normal liver regeneration and protection
“Have some bone broth therapy! The collagen in bone broth will heal your gut lining and reduce intestinal inflammation. It will also support healthy skin and can reduce the appearance of cellulite. The glycine in bone broth can detoxify your cells from chemicals and improve brain function.” Remember when you were little and you’d get a cold? Your mom would make you chicken noodle soup and there’s a good reason for that! It has been known to shorten colds and sicknesses by supporting internal healing and anti-inflammation. Of course the quality of your bone broth matters, so you want to make sure you’re either buying organic or making your own!
Collagen is found in bone broth, yes, but it can’t hurt to double up when you’re not feeling well. That’s why I love this bone broth hot chocolate recipe. It heals you from within!
Other Things to Have on Hand
- Cough Drops (Seeking Health)
- Heating pad
- Red light therapy panel
- Cool cloths
- Refillable water bottle with straw to encourage hydration
- Saline nose spray
Strengthening your immune system is one of the best ways to combat these winter blues and winter sicknesses. Take these vitamins for immune system health along with a healthy diet (bell peppers, kiwi, strawberries, and oranges all contain the vitamins for your immune system). While we hope to never ever get sick, sometimes it just happens. And getting sick is actually a good thing. Sometimes our immune system needs a boost and a little cold or sickness will strengthen it.