Nutritional Supplements for the Flu

Nutritional Supplements for the Flu

© Copyright 2011 The Alkaline Lifestyle.com.  All rights reserved

Some supplements may help your immune system function optimally, even when it's busy fighting a virus such as the flu or a cold.  When you're not feeling well, it's hard to plenty of vitamin-rich foods to help boost your immune system; you may not feel like eating at all.  You want to add supplement during a time when your body is weakened, or drink plenty of fresh juices to boost your nutrient intake.

Supplements for the flu include:

  • Vitamin D is necessary for immune cell production of anti-microbial peptides. Current medical research has identified a correlation between seasonal Vitamin D levels and influenza. Low Vitamin D levels are cited with the fact that colds, the flu and pneumonia are confined to winter months, when exposure to sunlight is most limited.

  • Vitamin A is known to have antiviral properties.  It is good for the immune system because it increases the body's T cells.

  • Vitamin C helps support the white blood cells and antibodies in the blood stream. Studies show that vitamin C can shorten the duration of the flu and even prevent them. Vitamin C increases interferon levels and has interferon-like properties itself. It acts as a natural antihistamine that helps dry up watery eyes and reduce nasal and chest congestion. Use bioflavonoids along with vitamin C for their synergistic effect.

  • Echinacea is widely used to treat or prevent colds, flu, and other infections and is believed to stimulate the immune system to help fight infections. Many studies have shown that Echinacea does in fact help alleviate the symptoms of colds and flu, and help in the recovery process. 

  • Elderberry contains antiviral properties and has been found to effectively treat influenza.  Elderberry inhibits neuraminidase, the enzyme used by the virus to spread infection to host cells by literally “coating” the virus, thereby inhibiting their ability to spread. There are also indication that elderberry prevents H1N1 influenza infection.

Herbal Remedies for the Flu

Certain herbs may also help your body recover quickly from a cold or flu virus. 

These include:

  • Andrographis: Is an herb used in Ayervedic medicine which as has anti-bacterial properties and stimulates the immune system.  The herb is also used in Chinese herbal medicine, where it is known for its "bitter" properties; as a treatment for digestive problems. This herb is also effective in treating upper respiratory infection and the flu. It will shorten the duration of the common cold and flu, and to be an effective preventative. It has been compared to Echinacea by some researchers, and was considered to be superior.

  • Ginger: The volatile oils in ginger help the body to sweat, break a fever and eliminate toxins. It also stimulates mucous release and is a metabolic enhancer.  It helps to decongest the lung, and a body cleansing herb.

  • Garlic has allicin as an active ingredient, giving it antiviral and antibacterial properties. Garlic helps detoxify the liver as well as stimulating the white blood cells, which in turn boost the immune system.

  • Goldenseal’s numerous uses are attributed to its antibiotic, anti-inflammatory and astringent properties. It has also been used to help reduce fevers, and relieve congestion and excess mucous. It also soothes irritated mucus membranes aiding the eyes, ears, nose and throat

If despite your best efforts at self care your fever lasts for more than a few days or the flu isn't going away on its own, please consult your healthcare provider.



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© 2011 by AlkalineLifestyle.com.  All rights reserved


These statements have not been evaluated by the food and drug administration.  The preceding information and/or products are for educational purposes only and are not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat illness. Please consult your doctor before making any changes or before starting ANY exercise or nutritional supplement program or before using this information or any product during pregnancy or if you have a serious medical condition.

 


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