ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — With tens of thousands of people dying from the coronavirus just in the U.S. and more than two million infected worldwide, some are stocking up on supplements to boost their immune system. But do they really work? Ivanhoe separates fact from fiction.
Vitamin C is good for your immune system. So, will doubling up on the supplement protect you against the coronavirus?
False! Our bodies can only absorb a few hundred milligrams of Vitamin C at a time. High doses can cause a number of side effects, including nausea, cramps, and an increased risk of kidney stones. What about superfoods, like chia seeds and coconut oil?
No, they won’t work either. Experts recommend eating a healthy, balanced diet with a variety of fruits and veggies that provide immune-boosting vitamins.
Ronan Factora, MD, Geriatrics Specialist, Cleveland Clinic, says, “People who have malnutrition are either by not getting enough protein or not getting enough of the nutrients and vitamins to help to boost your immune system. You’ll have problems fighting off illness.”
So, what does help? De-stressing. When you’re stressed, the body produces the hormone cortisol that may interfere with the immune system. Also, a study by the University of California, San Francisco found getting at least seven hours of sleep per night makes you four times less likely to get sick.
“Your body can’t fight off disease if you’re broken down because you’re overrunning yourself,” shared Pameil Rawlings, PharmD, Pharmacist.
But the most important thing experts say is to practice social distancing.
“That’s what’s going to protect you more than just taking a supplement,” continued Rawlings.
Rawlings also says that people with pre-existing health conditions, such as asthma and diabetes, put themselves at greater risk of contracting coronavirus if they don’t take their medications to control the condition.
Contributors to this news report include: Milvionne Chery, Producer; and Roque Correa, Editor.
CAN YOU BOOST YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM AGAINST COVID-19?
BACKGROUND: Good nutrition along with physical activity is the key to a healthy lifestyle. Even for people at a healthy weight, a poor diet is associated with health risks like heart disease, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, and certain types of cancer. It’s best to establish dietary habits in childhood because they often carry into adulthood. A healthy immune system needs good, regular nourishment. The concept of boosting immunity makes little sense scientifically and is not necessarily a good thing. There are so many kinds of cells in the immune system that respond to so many different microbes that it becomes complicated to know which cells you boost and how much you boost them. So, a healthy diet and exercise contribute to general good health and therefore to a healthy immune system.
COVID-19: NEED TO KNOW: Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is a respiratory illness that can spread from person to person. Risk of infection is higher for people who have close contact with someone known to have COVID-19. Other people at higher risk for infection are those who live in or have recently been in an area with ongoing spread. The virus is thought to spread mainly between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet) through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. It also may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes. There is currently no vaccine to protect against COVID-19. The best way to prevent infection is to take everyday preventive actions, like avoiding close contact with people who are sick and washing your hands often.
COVID-19: BOOST YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM: Eating a diet of fresh, whole foods in reasonable amounts is the best way to get your daily dose of vitamins, including the healthy antioxidants found in fruits and vegetables. Although nutrient supplements can help, it’s recommended that you rely on food for most of your nutrition. Researchers have shown that exercise improves the immune and metabolic systems. It increases your body’s production of antibodies and T-cells, causing them to circulate more rapidly. Even sweating is good for immune health. Getting enough sleep reboots your mind and your body, and therefore, your immune system. At least seven hours of sleep per night can make you four times less likely to catch a cold. Not getting enough sleep causes your body to increase its production of stress hormones. A few other recommendations to help keep your immunity in check is practicing good hygiene, keeping your mind active, going outside at least 30 minutes every day, and staying in touch with friends and family during social distancing by phone calls, email, skype or facetime.
* For More Information, Contact:
Pameil Rawlings, PharmD, MSMTM, CPh Andrea Pacetti, Public Relations
(407) 505-5821 (216) 316-3040
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