What You Eat and Supplement with Matters. Especially now…

For most of the population that is cooped up at home, people are becoming lazy about what they are eating. Convenience eating, Netflix binge eating and general overeating (especially the wrong foods) are becoming especially problematic. We all know that using vitamins and supplements build the immune system. I can’t stress enough the importance of the right nutrients and supplements during a time when the world is at risk of becoming sick, but what about food?

As it turns out, there is a very strong relationship between the food you eat and your ability to fend off colds, flu’s and viruses. You have to be very careful with the consumption of processed foods and foods high in sugar since they are known to cause inflammation (which can trigger an immune response). Opt for foods that are high in vegetable and fruit chemicals. At the moment, supermarkets are still open and you can have access to fruits and vegetables both fresh and frozen.

Proteins: Be choosy when it comes to proteins. Lean quality proteins should include wild seafood, organic poultry and high quality GMO free beef, and lamb. Since there’s a shortage in a lot of stores, do the best you can to get the healthiest selections you have access too.

Starches: Watch out for gluten and wheat since they take up room in your immune system. If you can’t resist pastas, look for ones that are rice or bean based. Alternatively, Zoodles made from zucchini make a good swap. The best rice choices are temple style, wild, Jasmine and basmati. Quinoa, yams, squash and steel cut oatmeal are also good to have on hand.

If you are curious about recipes, Google Mediterranean Diet, Asian Diet or Mediterrasian Diet which all contain the foods mentioned.

What about vitamins and supplements? Some of my top immune building supplements are not just the ones we all know about such as Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Zinc and Echinacea. There are plenty of supplements that have healing properties that don’t get nearly enough recognition.

Beta Glucans are naturally occurring polysaccharides. We see it in foods like oatmeal and that’s part of the reason it reduces cholesterol. Beta Glucans increase host immune defense by enhancing macrophages and natural killer cell function.

Probiotics aid tremendously in immune function since we know that 70- 80% of our immune system lives in the gut. Currently there is new science coming out every day on the gut microbiome and its relationship to our overall health. Probiotics should not only be used as a foundational supplement, but really strengthen the ability to fend off illnesses. We can introduce a wide variety of probiotics through yogurts from dairy and also coconut or almond milk based. Probiotic nasal spray is also beneficial and can be used on daily basis.

Glutathione: is referred to as The Master Antioxidant. It plays a major role in detoxification and building immunity. Glutathione levels decline with age, when we are not well, and even after taking over the counter pain killers. We can improve our glutathione levels by supplementing with glutathione orally, although the best absorption is intravenously.

N- Acetyl Cysteine (NAC) helps to make the antioxidant glutathione. In addition to its ability to detoxify, it is powerful in protecting the lungs and clears out the blood and different pathogens.

Fat (the good kind) is crucial and can help power immunity. High quality fats like avocado, avocado oil , olive oil, high quality butter etc. can be useful to put you into ketosis. Exogenous ketones taken in supplement form can also help you get there. When the body goes into ketosis it enters a protective state  against viruses and improves lung function. Studies have shown that a ketogenic diet can work against flu related inflammation and improves the body’s immune response.

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