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Tag: remedies

Vitamins to Help Avoid or Recover from a Virus

Ever since Linus Pauling first discovered how vitamin C works with the human body’s immune system over 100 years ago, we have been learning more and more about how the human body functions and the essential roles these substances play. The scientific field of orthomolecular medicine is the study of how vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients affect the human body. Orthomolecular medicine uses safe, effective nutritional therapy to fight illness.

Before we go into which vitamins and minerals could help keep you healthy or perhaps work to restore your health if you are already suffering, let’s be clear that this is not a replacement for any social distancing or personal protective equipment guidelines. As always, nutrient supplementation should be undertaken in addition to other health efforts such as eating a healthy, whole foods-based diet, getting exercise, avoiding chemicals, etc., and not instead of other efforts.

While we are calling the virus that causes this pandemic “novel”, there’s nothing unfamiliar about how to address viral infections and how to help our bodies resist and recover. In fact, there has been a lot of chatter in the world of natural health and in the world of scientific studies about the anti-viral effects of some vitamins and minerals that could prove useful. At worst, they won’t harm.

Vitamin C

Chinese officials have been successfully using IV vitamin C therapy in their battle against the virus, and there is abundant clinical evidence as to the efficacy of intravenous vitamin C in battling viral infections. While you can get i.v. therapy at a hospital if you are already admitted and insist on it, or at a stand-alone center, the rest of us should be taking it orally. There has been documented success in using vitamin C against any virus.

My preferred method of getting vitamin C is through foods such as citrus fruits, strawberries, kiwis, and acerola cherries, but supplements can be taken, too. 500-1,000 mg of vitamin C daily is a good goal for maintaining health, which I would double or even triple and take in divided doses if feeling ill. My favorite bio-available Vitamin C supplement is called OPT.

Vitamin D

Humans synthesize vitamin D from sun exposure to un-sunscreened skin, but the great majority of Americans are deficient. Studies have linked vitamin D deficiency to autoimmune issues and vitamin D works with vitamin C in helping us withstand viral assaults.

To supplement during this time where viral threats luck everywhere, 5,000 I.U. of D3 daily may help boost your immunity. Vitamin D needs to travel on fat, so be sure to take it with something that contains fat such as dairy products, avocados, etc.

Vitamin A

Most Americans are also deficient in vitamin A. Dr. Brownstein recommends 5,000 units of vitamin A (not beta carotene) daily as a preventative, and significantly increasing this amount for a limited time (4 days) if you are ill. It’s important not to take higher doses of vitamin A for a prolonged period to avoid vitamin A toxicity.

Vitamin A is found in foods from animal sources, including dairy products, fish, and meat (especially liver). If you are a vegan, now is an especially important time to supplement with vitamin A.

See a lot more tips and remedies for recovering from a viral infection in my ever-popular Kick-a-Cold series.

Stay well!

How Can I Stay Healthy This Winter?

Reader question:

I have had one flu shot as an adult, and got the flu twice that year. I work at a college, and am exposed to hundreds of (sick, young) people 5 days a week! I do my utmost to stay healthy, but last year I got REALLY sick several times (also family crisis played into that). Also rather terrified of getting shingles; to vax or not…  ~Susan W., New Hampshire
Susan- As a member of my Inflammation Influencer program and dedicating yourself to removing inflammation and healing your body, you are already moving down the right path toward warding off illnesses. Since more than 80% of our immune system is based in our gut — and that is a target of this program — we can hope that you will be in better shape this year to fight off whatever may come around.
Yet, colds and flu can take down even the most vigilant among us.
Here are my very best tips to help get you through the season comfortably.
I keep an arsenal of herbs, homeopathy, and other natural remedies around in case something gets past my hand-washing and shoes-off policies. I wrote about these extensively in my Kick a Cold series on my blog.
If I suspect it is flu, then Oscillo is the solution 90% of the time. Catching it early is key. If you search for “flu” in my blog  there are more than 20 pages of tips to avoid or kick out the flu.
There are even great homeopathic remedies for shingles/chicken pox. It would still suck, but not as bad.
That said, I am not a medical doctor and legally cannot advise you as to pharmaceuticals. What I can do is share my own thoughts and experiences and encourage you to make your own, educated decisions. Here are some thoughts I’ve had about the flu vaccine.
Here are my thoughts on vaccines in general.
Those in my Inflammation Influencer programs will have a step up in staying healthy this winter. Interested in checking it out? Grab a free Naturopathic Health Assessment to see if you are a good candidate for this program!