The winter months are notorious for being the time of year when people are most likely to get sick—cold and flu are at the top of the list for most people. Following is a look at why this happens, and how you can take measures to lessen your chances of getting sick. Also seen here are some effective and accessible supplements to bolster the immune system.
Getting Sick In Winter
Viruses and infections, including the common cold, the seasonal flu, and others, tend to spread most effectively in the winter months. There are a few reasons for this. Cold weather is one reason, since viruses often thrive in the cold. Another is humidity, as airborne particles live and travel better in humid air.
Another big reason for the spread of sickness in winter is spending more time in enclosed spaces with others, especially family. Being in close quarters with other individuals will increase the chances of sickness spreading if one of these individuals turns out to be sick.
Taking Care of Your Immune System
For many of us, we get sick so commonly during the winter time, that it feels like a yearly occurrence that is to be expected. If this describes your experience, it should not stop you from putting some thought and effort to take care of your immune system. Taking care of your immune system can truly pay off in these wintry months now upon us, as you go through winter in good health.
You make decisions every day that favor or hinder your immune system to some degree. Being mindful of decisions that bolster your immune system will decrease your chances of getting sick, as well as the difficulty and duration of symptoms if you do.
Your diet and lifestyle do indeed affect your immune system. A lack of adequate sleep, or an excess of processed and sugary foods can make for less-than-ideal conditions for immune function. Getting enough sleep, hydrating regularly, and eating a vitamin-rich diet are all great ways to set your immune system up to function right when it needs to be.
Best Products for Bolstering Immunity
Zinc is very important for the immune system because it is necessary in order to produce certain types of immune cells. Zinc is instrumental in helping the immune system to function properly, and it is readily available as an oral supplement.
Vitamin C, like zinc, is critical for the immune system. If you are deficient in vitamin C, then you’ll almost certainly be more prone to getting sick during the winter season.
Quercetin is a flavonoid (responsible for producing flavor) in many fruits and vegetables. Quercetin has been shown to decrease the frequency and severity of respiratory illness, as well as the length of time that symptoms last. Although it is common in many plant-based foods, quercetin also makes for a worthwhile supplement.
N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) is an amino acid that the body uses to produce glutathione. Glutathione is an antioxidant that is very helpful for effective immune functioning. Without sufficient glutathione, the immune system won’t function like it should. NAC can be of great help during winter.
Vitamin B6, as well as the other B vitamins, are vital. Vitamin B6 is specifically useful in that it supports biochemical reactions which take place as the immune system works against infections.
Vitamin D is an essential vitamin that’s very easy to get enough of when you spend time in the sun. However, it can be especially important during winter when people are less likely to get much sunlight, which can affect vitamin D intake. Studies show that those who take Vitamin D in the winter are less likely to catch colds and the flu.
If you want to avoid getting sick in these winter months, then take measures to bolster your immune system. Living a healthy lifestyle is certainly favorable for the immune system. The above supplements can also be of great help in bolstering your immune system when we tend to need it most. Talk to your doctor if you are considering taking any supplements that you’ve never used before.