Fusion Health holistic nutritionist and naturopath, Erika Morvay, shares her top five supplements to stock your home with to help keep the whole family healthier this winter.
It’s a staple every home needs, whether it’s for fighting colds and flu, or helping to ward off common cold symptoms. While you can get vitamin C from fruit and veg, only one in every five Australians eat enough of the recommended daily amount, so a supplement can help fill in any dietary intake gaps. Vitamin C is also involved in collagen production which is important in keeping the skin elastic and firm1.
A must-have for men, as low levels of zinc may affect a man’s fertility and his prostate health. For both men and women, low levels of zinc may influence your ability to recover from rhinovirus (common cold)3, reduce your body’s ability to process and digest nutrients from your foods, and is needed for healthy muscle function. Zinc has also been shown to help regulate your metabolism, and may be the reason why you’re susceptible to minor infections, as zinc is required for normal immune cell development and function.
This pretty flower can do more than brighten up your herb garden, it can also help boost your immune system and reduce the severity of a cold or flu. It contains active substances, some of which have anti-microbial properties, others which may boost the immune system. One study found that Echinacea could reduce a person’s chances of catching a cold by approximately 58 percent, and that taking it when feeling run down could reduce the duration of a cold by 1.4 days.
When you’re stressed your immune system may suffer, as can your sleep, waistline and overall energy levels. You can help reduce your stress levels by exercising regularly (a 30 minute daily walk will do wonders), going to bed at the same time every night for at least seven hours shut-eye, eating regular well-balanced meals, and reducing your alcohol intake. A daily dose of B-group vitamins or Vitamin B complex can help keep your stress under control, which in turn, can help you be healthier overall.
Sourced mainly from the exposure to sunlight (which can be difficult to get during the colder months even in Australia), one study has found that daily supplementation of Vitamin D may reduce the risk of flu by 58 per cent. As we spend so much time indoors during the colder months, it may be a good idea to boost your daily dosage.
Speak to your healthcare practitioner to find out which supplement is right for you.