Boost Your Immunity!
6 natural supplements to fight off illnesses and strengthen your immune system
While a balanced diet and regular exercise are ideal immunity-builders, health supplements help boost immunity. But do consult your doc and read the label carefully before using them,” says Dr Ashutosh Shukla, director, and head, internal medicine, Artemis Health Institute, Gurugram. Here’s a quick look at some effective supplements.
This powerful herb is often used to prevent and fight colds, but can do much more for your system. It can stimulate your immune system to produce more T-cells [white blood cells that help the immune system fight infections] and strengthen it to tackle invading germs.
This traditional herb is effective when taken with cow’s milk. A study comparing blood samples of volunteers before and after consuming it showed a marked increase in the number of certain immune cells.
Zinc increases production of WBCs making it a great cancer fighter and immunity-booster. Some studies show that 30 mg of zinc taken at the onset of a cold will shorten it by about half a day. However, excess zinc can be immune-suppressive, so check with your doctor before you pop one.
This Ayurvedic supplement contains amla, haritaki and bibhitaki, all of which are known to have immune-modulating effects, according to Dr Issac Mathai, medical director, SOUKYA International Holistic Centre, Bengaluru.
A powerful antioxidant-rich herb that improves blood flow and maintains Omega-3 fatty acid levels in the body, it helps boost the immune system.
This root is known to boost the number of immune cells in the body. A study of 323 people over four months showed that those who took ginseng every day had a lower frequency of colds.