These immune-boosting vitamins and minerals are a must for back to school.
Now that "Back-to-School" season is nearly here, it's time to start thinking about effective ways to boost your child's diet and strengthen their immune systems. Finding the right supplements and healthy foods is a powerful way to help set your child up for success as they get ready for another memorable school year. Following are several vitamins and minerals you should consider adding to your child's diet or supplement regimen to stay healthy throughout cold and flu season.
#1 Elderberry Extract
Elderberries contain high levels of antioxidants, which are known for their immunity-boosting properties. Studies have shown their efficacy in boosting the immune system in airline passengers and helping to reduce their chances of becoming ill while traveling. They can also reduce levels of harmful inflammatory responses, which are known to disrupt the immune system response.
While many people are familiar with probiotics and how important they are to digestive health, most may not be familiar with the powerful role they play in the immune system response. Probiotics give an extra boost to immune cells and decrease the severity of cold and flu symptoms. Some of the best sources for probiotics include yogurt, kombucha, sourdough bread, and some types of cheeses.
This potent flavonoid is mainly found in plants and fruits and contains mighty cancer-fighting and immunity-boosting properties. Because it can be challenging for most people to get the amount of quercetin they need to receive full benefits, some studies have shown that taking a supplement can be just as effective.
Magnesium levels play a large part in determining the health of a person's immune system. If a person is ill and their magnesium levels are too low, this can cause what's known as a "cytokinetic storm." This condition causes healthy immune system cells to stop attacking invading cells and start attacking each other instead. You can boost your magnesium levels by adding leafy vegetables, legumes, beans, and milk to your diet or by taking a magnesium supplement.
Iron deficiency can severely weaken a person's immune system response and can make them more susceptible to falling ill, especially during cold and flu season. The immune system requires a healthy level of iron to fight off viruses and prevent additional complications. Iron supplements can help increase a person's iron levels. However, red meat, pork, chicken, and beans are excellent sources of iron, as well.
#6 Vitamin C
Vitamin C is one of the most well-known immune-boosting vitamins and is mainly found in citrus, strawberries, tomatoes, and potatoes. Vitamin C works to support the immune system by enhancing phagocytosis and protecting the immune system from the damaging effects of free radicals.
Zinc has a direct effect on the health of immune system cells and maintaining a robust immune response, especially during times of stress. Studies show that zinc affects many essential components of the immune system, and not having enough of it can cause people to become susceptible to illness. Adding a zinc supplement can be particularly beneficial for those who experience zinc deficiency.
Adaptogens provide a boost in the immune system's ability to fight off free radicals and increase protection from stress within healthy immune cells. Ashwagandha is one of the most powerful and well-researched adaptogens on the market and can help keep people healthy throughout cold and flu season. Try finding a supplement that uses both the aerial parts (leaves) and the root of the Ashwagandha plant – this will boost the overall efficacy.
#9 Vitamin D
While vitamin D is essential for bone health and mental health, it is also vital for proper immune system function. The body is capable of producing its own vitamin D. However, people need a proper amount of sunlight to be able to complete this process. Many people who spend most of their time inside or live in cloudier climates benefit from adding vitamin D supplements to their regimen.
#10 B Vitamins
Vitamins B6 and B12 work together to create a robust and healthy immune response. They are also helpful in reducing the severity of symptoms when a person becomes ill. Excellent sources of B6 and B12 vitamins include fortified breakfast cereals, eggs, dairy, and leafy greens.
While it can be difficult to add all of these foods to your family's diet, there are other convenient ways to boost their immune system. Consider purchasing a supplement like Revvi Immune. This supplement includes a well-balanced mix of vitamins and minerals to boost the immune systems of your household without having to make extreme dietary changes.
Not only will adding these nutrients and/or supplements help keep your child healthy in the classroom, but they can also help keep the rest of your family healthy.
References & Resources
- Elderberry Supplementation Reduces Cold Duration and Symptoms in Air-Travellers: A Randomized, Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trial
- Probiotics and immune health - PMC
- Quercetin, Inflammation and Immunity - PMC
- Magnesium is essential for the immune system, including in the fight against cancer -- ScienceDaily
- Iron and immunity: immunological consequences of iron deficiency and overload - PMC
- Vitamin C and Immune Function - PMC
- Zinc in Human Health: Effect of Zinc on Immune Cells - PMC
- Effects of Adaptogens on the Central Nervous System and the Molecular Mechanisms Associated with Their Stress—Protective Activity
- Vitamin D and Depression: A Critical Appraisal of the Evidence and Future Directions - PMC
- B Vitamins and the Brain: Mechanisms, Dose and Efficacy—A Review