Best Immune Support Recommendations

There is a sort of helplessness we find ourselves in.

In a culture of working harder and doing more, we’re being told the only thing we can do right now is hide. 

It’s weird. And also super angsty and scary.

We know the only defense against COVID-19 (for the next year or so) is our own immune system. For a bunch of us, that will be overwhelmingly enough. For others, we’re in the gray zone. And then of course there are those with both overactive and under-active immune systems that are at risk for serious outcomes. 

Here’s the good news… there’s more you can be doing right now than simply hiding. 

So take note and prepare to gird up your nutritional loins for battle with these 3 things:

Vitamin D
5,000 IU’s per day

Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin that acts on your DNA to turn processes on/off in your body. 

Let that sink it. Vitamin changes your body level of your DNA. 

Are you deficient?
If you live north of the Mason-Dixon line, you haven’t seen the sun for 4-6 months. So yes, your Vitamin D levels are absolutely struggling right now. 

Does it impact your immune system?
Yes. Studies show that, in addition to DNA interactions, there are receptors for Vitamin D on immune cells. It helps to properly regulate your immune response, making sure it doesn’t overreact, and allows for better clearance of little microbes.

Hepatitis B levels go down as Vitamin D levels go up. And while this isn’t the same virus we’re dealing with, it’s an excellent illustration of the way Vitamin D plays a role in regulating the virus-clearing immunity. 

“Collectively, these studies support the hypothesis that optimal vitamin D status of the host may contribute key immunoregulatory functions in settings of viral respiratory infection by down-regulating overly exuberant (and thus toxic) cytokine responses, while allowing for improved clearance of various microbial species”

What should I take?
5,000 IU’s of D3 per day. If taking capsules, do it with a meal with some fat in it. I like the droplets best, though. Also, make friends with the sun for 20-40 min per day if you’re lucky enough to have that option right now. 

Vitamin C
5 g per day, split into 2-3 doses

Are you deficient?
Do you have scurvy? No probably not. But could further supplementation help you get into optimal levels to support your immune system? Yes. 

“Epidemiological studies show that Vitamin C deficiency is the fourth leading nutrient deficiency in the United States.”

Does it impact your immune system?
Yes. There is a mountain of evidence that it can “both prevent and treat respiratory and systemic infections by enhancing various immune cell functions.”

It’s also worth noting that NY hospitals are administering high dose vitamin C IV’s to their patients as we speak. 

New York Hospitals Treating Coronavirus Patients With Vitamin C

What should I take?
Split up your 5g into 2-3 doses per day to avoid the unpleasant potential “flushing” effect that can happen with a high oral dose of Vitamin C. It’s not dangerous, just unsavory. Citrus fruits, strawberries, and bell peppers are all high in vitamin C.

20-30mg per day

Are you deficient?
Probs. About 2 billion people are estimated to be deficient. 

Does it impact your immune system?
Zinc is crucial for your immune system overall, but studies have also shown that it’s specifically a vital defense against viruses. 

To shed light on the importance of zinc: it’s a part of every class of enzyme in your body, and it binds to a full 10% of your proteins in your body. 

What should I take?
20-30mg per day. Zinc picolinate is the best absorbed form of supplementation. Since it’s a metal, if you take it on an empty stomach you might experience some queasiness. If that happens you can just take it with a bit of food. Additionally, oysters are extremely high in zinc. So if you fancy yourself a mollusk lover, bon appetit. 

A Quick Note on Sugar & Exercise

Poor sugar and insulin control is awful for your immune system. 

Reasonable exercise is excellent for your immune system. 

If you are sitting at home right now not exercising while binging on Netflix, Doritos, and Butterfingers, you’re really putting your immune system at a disadvantage. 

These three supplements are no brainers and will help you immediately. Please go load up!


Vitamin D and the Immune System

Low Vitamin D Levels Are Associated with High Viral Loads in Patients with Chronic Hepatitis B: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Zinc Signals and Immune Function

Zinc as a Gatekeeper for Immune Function

Vitamin C and Immune Function

Immune Enhancing Role of Vitamin C and Zinc and Effect on Clinical Conditions