Pesticides Damage Immune System

Your kitchen faucet might be just as dangerous as your stovetop, according to a recent study published in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Researchers found elevated levels of dichlorophenols, chemicals used in tap water and pesticides, in the urine of people affected with food allergies.

The tap water study is one more drop in the bucket of research indicating pesticides wreak havoc on the immune system. This study also illustrates how pervasive these harmful chemicals are. Exposure to pesticides is difficult to avoid, but immune booster supplements may help.

The Evidence against Pesticides

In 1996, the World Resources Institute published “Pesticides and the Immune System: The Public Health Risks.” The paper cited worldwide examples of immunosuppression.

After experiencing a dramatic rise in pesticide use, Philippian farmers also experienced higher mortality rates. High mortality only affected men who farmed, while their wives and men in other occupations experienced no such rise in mortality.

In Uzbekistan, people living in cotton-growing regions where high levels of pesticides were used suffered from more kidney disease, upper respiratory tract infections and gastrointestinal diseases. The study also concluded that pesticides damage organs and exacerbated existing conditions like tuberculosis.

The World Resources Institute goes on to say that people exposed to pesticides are more likely to develop cancers associated with immune suppression. Even though farmers enjoy less heart disease than other occupational groups, they are more likely to develop cancers normally reserved for people with a weakened immune system.

Pesticides Lower Immunity

A report from the Environmental Health Center in Dallas, Texas may help explain pesticides devastating impact on the immune system. Researchers examined 107 patients who had been exposed to pesticides. They found that 81 percent had low levels of T and B cells, immune cells that fight off infections. Furthermore, these levels improved after the patients were free of pesticide exposure for at least four days.

The report also says that a group of South American Indians who, thanks to the dense jungle canopy, were pesticide-free were also free of the diseases associated with industrialized civilizations.

Pesticides are Difficult to Avoid

Pesticide use is on the rise. According to the EPA, the U.S. spent almost $12 billion on pesticides in 2007.

Such heavy use has made pesticides hard to avoid. 99 percent of Americans test positive for DDT, according to the Pesticide Action Network (PAN). 93 percent test positive for a harmful insecticide. PAN says exposure to chemicals begin in the womb.

It may be nearly impossible to eliminate all of your pesticide exposure and its detrimental effects on immunity. Also, if you are one of the millions of Americans afflicted with food allergies due to pesticides, you are also more likely to succumb to wellness challenges.

Immune Booster Supplements May Help

Immune booster supplements, particularly Purx ReBound, may be able to bolster your body’s defenses. Purx ReBound contains over 20 ingredients clinically shown to provide immune system support.

For example, licorice root was shown to increase T cell activation in one study. Researchers at Harvard found that vitamin A supports the activity of both T and B cells. One of the most important immune booster vitamins, vitamin D is helps regulate the immune system’s production of T cells.

Environmental pollutants like pesticides are a fact of modern life. As research like the tap water study becomes more prevalent, perhaps the use of environmental pollutants will decrease. In the meantime, you can support your immune system by using high quality immune booster supplements like Purx ReBound.

Your Complete Guide to Staying Well This Season

Hospitals are restricting visitors to reign in the flu in Fayetteville. Schools are closing because of the flu in Charleston and other areas. Flu-related doctor visits are already higher this year than in past years. Not even the CDC knows how much worse the flu season will get since peaks are not usually seen until January or February. From immune booster supplements like healthy nutrition and exercise to best practices like staying away from the most germ-filled places, here is a list of the most effective ways to prevent the flu.

Prevent the Flu and Other Illnesses

The following tips are the best practices for preventing the flu.

Wash your hands correctly. A squirt of soap and a quick rinse aren’t enough to prevent the flu. First, use water that is as hot as you can tolerate. Use plenty of soap and wash for at least 20 seconds. Finally, don’t forget the forgotten spots: under fingernails and your wrists. Always wash your hands when you get home before you touch much else in the house.

Use gloves and hand sanitizer. Washable gloves are the easiest way to keep your hands germ-free in public spaces. When gloves aren’t an option, use hand sanitizer regularly.

Protect yourself from the most germ-filled places. Gyms are among the dirtiest public places, as are public computers and school desks. Other places to avoid or be on the ready with sanitizer are ATMs, public soap dispensers and all door handles.

Clean key personal items. Germs make themselves at home on some of your personal gear. Sheets, cell phones and backpacks are among the items that should be cleaned regularly.

Prevent the Spread of Flu to Other Family Members

Despite your best efforts, sometimes the flu or other virus will infect someone in the house. When a member of the home gets sick, extra diligence can keep the bug from spreading.

Limit the illness to one area. Whether it’s the couch or a bed with a TV, give the ill person a space apart from the rest of the family.

Open a window or two. It seems counterintuitive during cold weather. But one of the factors that lead to more illnesses in winter months is shut-up homes. Opening a window once or twice a day will help clear out airborne pathogens.

Give the ill person a mask to wear. It may seem extreme, but there’s a reason these paper goodies are popping up in doctors’ offices. Considering germs spread to a six-foot radius around the infected person who is talking, sneezing and coughing, masks are an effective preventive measure against the flu.

Maintain a Strong Immune System

Despite a pharmacy on nearly every corner, many medical experts agree that a strong immune system is the best way to prevent illness. The state of New York lists immune booster supplements like exercise and diet as effective measures to preventing illness.

The Cleveland Clinic suggests that supplementing with vitamins for immune system support and increasing your antioxidant intake may help boost the immune system.

Purx ReBound contains ingredients known to be the best immune supplements. Herbs like licorice root and isatis have been shown to increase the activation of immune cells. Purx ReBound also contains vitamins C, D and A, all of which have been shown to be important vitamins for immune system support.

The flu season is starting earlier than usual in 2012 and is making headlines across the country. Before the season peaks, you can implement the above best strategies to prevent the flu. When you pay special attention to your immune system’s health, you can increase your overall sense of wellness and energy as well.

Influenza Increases Risk of Pneumonia & Other Infections

It’s confounded scientists since the Spanish Flu outbreak in 1918. While 50-100 million people perished in that pandemic, most died due to secondary infections, especially pneumonia, rather than the flu itself. The immune mechanisms leading to these superinfections, as scientists call them, have remained a mystery until now. Remarkably, a new study shows the influenza virus seems to manipulate the immune system into shutting down some of its defenses against bacteria. A lifestyle that includes exercise, a healthy diet and natural immune system supplements may boost immunity during seasonal challenges.

The influenza virus has sleeper spy cells within the immune system. These cells, called TLR7, can detect viral genomes and launch an immune response. But when the invading virus is the flu, these same cells release a signaling substance. This substance, IFNGamma, rushes to the immune system’s bacteria-fighting scavenger cells with a deadly message. In essence, these scavenger cells are commanded to stop killing bacteria.

Flu-related deaths over the past 30 years have ranged anywhere from 3,000 to 49,000, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Still, researchers aren’t any closer to preventing flu-induced superinfections despite the study pinpointing IFNGamma as a culprit.

One of the study’s authors, Dr. Stegemann-Koniszewski, says that while it may seem logical to inhibit IFNGamma production, doing so may “have unforeseen repercussions” in a tightly regulated immune system.

Stay Healthy With a Strong Immune System

Experts do agree, however, that people with a weak immune system are more likely to get the flu. Dr. Merrell of Beth Israel Medical Center in New York says that “The strength of our immune system is what makes the difference between who gets sick and who doesn’t.” A combination of exercise, a healthy diet and immune booster vitamins can support your immune system this season.

Moderate Exercise is Key

When it comes to preventing the flu, avoid marathons and other activities that call for intense training. But don’t be a couch potato either.

A study divided mice infected with the flu virus into three groups. One group was like that of the typical couch potato. The second group was put into intense training. Imagine the Boston Marathon for rodents. The third group was given a decidedly less appreciated form of exercise: mild jogging.

More than 50 percent of the deadbeat mice died. Still, they fared better than their hyper-active counterparts. 70 percent of the mice that exercised vigorously died. And the casually exercising mice? Only 12 percent of the gently jogging mice died.

It seems that moderate activity improves immune function more than intense exercise.

Eat a Rainbow of Vegetables

Nutrition is a critical component of a healthy immune system, according to a review published by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics says that even a mild nutrition deficiency can inhibit your body’s ability to fight infections.

Helpguide suggests a simple approach to diet. Instead of counting calories, focus on eating whole foods. 5-8 servings of colorful vegetables will provide a variety of nutrients. Helpguide also suggests enjoying mealtimes as a way to chew slowly and reconnect with your body.

Get Support from Natural Immune Booster Supplements

Several natural immune booster supplements have been clinically shown to provide immune system support during wellness challenges. Natural immune system supplements that include several of these herbs and vitamins, like Purx ReBound, may be the most effective.

Purx ReBound contains Umckaloaba, which grows in South Africa and has been used medicinally by the indigenous people for centuries. Umckaloaba effectively decreased symptoms including chest congestion in one double-blind, placebo-controlled study.

Licorice Root is another immune booster supplement in Purx ReBound clinically shown to have immune-boosting properties. A 2010 study concluded that licorice root stimulates T cell activity and is a “potential alternative for mounting an effective immune response. . .”

Isatis increases immune function, according to a Chinese study. Another 2004 study found that Isatis increased lymphocytes, important cells of the immune system.

An active lifestyle, a healthy diet and immune booster supplements can help keep you energized this season. Remember to keep your exercise moderate and enjoyable. Your diet should include plenty of colorful vegetables. And the best immune supplements contain herbs clinically proven to be effective.

 

Immune System Booster to Keep You Fit

Exercise is a “wonder drug,” say researchers at Macmillan Cancer Support. While a 50 percent increase in cancer survival rates is impressive, exercise also manages and prevents heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes. But exercise is no slouch, so to speak. New research suggests exercise is also one of nature’s immune system boosters.

Researchers at Iowa State University divided mice into three groups. The first group was sedentary. The second group exercised moderately. The third group exercised strenuously. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19811098)

The researchers then infected the mice with influenza. The mice in the first two groups developed severe symptoms. But the moderately exercising mice experienced fewer symptoms for shorter durations.

The researchers concluded moderate exercise results in fewer symptoms and faster recovery.

Researchers at the University of Illinois wondered why moderate exercise is one of nature’s immune system boosters. They found moderate exercise enhances the immune system’s T1 cells and T2-helper cells. (http://journals.lww.com/acsm-essr/Abstract/2009/10000/Exercise_and_Respiratory_Tract_Viral_Infections.3.aspx)

T1 cells are the immune system’s fighter cells. They attack the virus, producing inflammation. When there are no more virus cells, T1 cells begin attacking the body’s own cells.

T2-helper cells tell the T1 cells to stop attacking.

To clear your body of an infection, your immune system must exquisitely balance T1 cells and T2-helper cells. Exercise, being one of nature’s immune system boosters, helps maintain that balance.

Researchers discovered that not exercising at all reduces the number of T1 cells available to fight infection. Alternately, exercising too strenuously increased T2-helper cells too rapidly, thus halting the T1 cells’ response before the immune system cleared the infection.

However, moderate exercise initiates the Goldilocks reaction: balancing T1 cells with T2-helper cells to make the immune response “just right.”

WebMD says walking 100 steps a minute for 150 minutes per week is enough to benefit from moderate exercise. (http://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/news/20090317/what-is-moderate-exercise)

But what if you are in training that requires some strenuous exercise? And what if you are exercising in a gym where bacteria live on surfaces for days?

It’s easy to avoid getting sick when you exercise strenuously or at the gym when you use an immune boosting supplement proven to enhance the immune system’s T cell response.

When herbs scientifically proven to enhance immune system function combine with vitamins vital for the immune response, the result is a superior immune boosting supplement.

When you take a high-quality immune boosting supplement while exercising strenuously, you won’t have to worry about a cold or the flu derailing your spring training. You’ll also get the benefits of a “wonder drug” that strengthens your heart, normalizes your blood pressure and prevents type 2 diabetes—without the side effects that accompany prescription drugs.

Why You Need to Boost Your Immune System with Vitamins

Vitamins are the foundation of immune system support. From improving the effectiveness of natural killer cells to safely curbing the immune response once the threat is extinguished, a healthy immune system depends on a ready supply of vitamins. But fighting viruses and bacteria isn’t the only role of vitamins. The vitamins you eat have a lot of work to do before—and if—they make it to your immune system.

In fact, eating is one activity that depletes your body’s supply of vitamins to boost immune system function.

Digested food enters your cells. Within your cells are mitochondria, tiny factories of energy. The mitochondria use the food and the oxygen you breathe to produce energy. Free radicals are a by-product of this energy manufacturing process.

Left unchecked, free radicals steal electrons from the tissues in your body, leaving them damaged. According to Mark Hyman, M.D., this damage can result in many of the illnesses we associate with aging.

The mitochondria rely on certain vitamins, also known as antioxidants, to suppress the free radicals before they can damage cells and tissues.

One such vitamin is vitamin E, one of the essential vitamins to boost immune system function. Researchers in Japan found vitamin E aids in the development of T cells within the thymus. Researchers at Tufts University found vitamin E “improves immune responsiveness in healthy individuals”  (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2203257).

Vitamin C is another of the vitamins to boost immune system function that does double-duty as an antioxidant. Researchers in Germany found T cells and phagocytes require vitamin C to function properly (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19263912).

Vitamin A is also squelches free radicals. Researchers at Harvard Medical School found vitamin A is essential for the formation lymphocytes and T-helper cells. It also aids in preventing inflammation and autoimmune diseases (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19172691).

Vitamins E, C, and A are essential to healthy mitochondria function and for immune system support. If you eat food that is high in calories but low in nutrients, your mitochondria needs even more vitamin E and other antioxidants to convert the food into energy. As a result, your body may lack vitamins to boost immune system function.

The USDA survey found Americans are lacking in key nutrients. According to the survey, Americans are not getting the recommended daily allowance of vitamins E and A. Americans are not getting the amount of vitamin C necessary to boost immunity, which is 10 time the current RDA values.

Vitamins may be the foundation of immune support, but they also fight disease-causing free radicals. The many roles vitamins play in your health means you need to boost your immune system with a high-quality supplement.

Why You Need to Boost Your Immune System with Vitamins

Vitamins are the foundation of immune system support. From improving the effectiveness of natural killer cells to safely curbing the immune response once the threat is extinguished, a healthy immune system depends on a ready supply of vitamins. But fighting viruses and bacteria isn’t the only role of vitamins. The vitamins you eat have a lot of work to do before—and if—they make it to your immune system.

In fact, improper eating habits can deplete your body’s supply of vitamins to boost immune system function. This is because when the energy factories within your cells, mitochondria, convert your digested food into energy, an insidious by-product emerges: free radicals. The mitochondria rely on certain vitamins, also known as antioxidants, to suppress the free radicals before they can damage cells and tissues. According to Mark Hyman, M.D., this damage can result in many of the illnesses we associate with aging.

Vitamins E, C, and A are essential to healthy mitochondria function and for immune system support. If you eat food that is high in calories but low in nutrients, your mitochondria needs even more vitamin E and other antioxidants to convert the food into energy. As a result, your body may lack vitamins to boost immune system function.

Vitamin E is one of the vitamins to boost immune system function that also acts as an antioxidant. Researchers in Japan found vitamin E aids in the development of T cells within the thymus. Researchers at Tufts University found vitamin E “improves immune responsiveness in healthy individuals”  (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2203257).

Vitamin C is another of the vitamins to boost immune system function that does double-duty as an antioxidant. Researchers in Germany found T cells and phagocytes require vitamin C to function properly (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19263912).

Vitamin A is also squelches free radicals. Researchers at Harvard Medical School found vitamin A is essential for the formation lymphocytes and T-helper cells. It also aids in preventing inflammation and autoimmune diseases (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19172691).

The USDA survey found Americans are lacking in key nutrients. According to the survey, Americans are not getting the recommended daily allowance of vitamins E and A. Americans are not getting the amount of vitamin C necessary to boost immunity, which is 10 time the current RDA values.

Vitamins are not only the foundation of immune support, but they also fight disease-causing free radicals. The many roles vitamins play in your health means you need to boost your immune system with a high-quality supplement.

Immune Boosting Supplements: Strength-Training Your Immune System

If your couch potato friends tell you that exercising is hazardous to your health, they may be right. Numerous studies are confirming what road warriors and other fitness enthusiasts have known for years: intense exercise can lead to sniffles and congestion. By understanding how exercise affects your immune system, you can glean all the benefits of exercise without the troublesome viral infections.

Exercise and the Immune System
Suppressed immunity as a result of exercising seems like a paradox considering the ways exercise strengthens the immune system.

One study found a 20 percent decrease in the risk of developing an upper respiratory infection in “moderately active” participants. The University of Illinois found moderate exercise stimulates the production of immune cells.

Unlike moderate exercise, overtraining seems to suppress immunity. According to Dr. David Nieman, exercising for 90 minutes or more activates the release of stress hormones. When your training program overlooks the stress-inducing nature of running, your immune system suffers.

Stress suppresses the immune system. According to the National Institutes of Health, stress reduces the production and effectiveness of immune cells. People suffering from stress are more likely to become ill and heal more slowly.

Signs Your Immune System Is Run-Down
Running Times Magazine (http://runningtimes.com/Article.aspx?ArticleID=9255&PageNum=&CategoryID=) lists several signs pointing to a suppressed immune system. One of these signs, insomnia, is further supported by a Canadian study that found people suffering from insomnia had lower immune function. Other signs of a suppressed immune system include fatigue, frequent injuries and craving sweets.

Overtraining in combination with daily stress can spiral into unmitigated fatigue and frequent illness. Dr. Dan Kalish says that when the full range of symptoms resulting from overtraining manifest, it can take 6 months or more to recover.

Repair Your Immune System
Immune-boosting supplements with the right combination of ingredients may help you recover more quickly.

Purx Rebound contains the best immune supplements to enhance immunity. For example, pelargonium sidoides, also known as umckaloaba was recommended by Dr. Oz as an effective immune-boosting supplement. The Journal of Family Practice published a review (http://www.jfponline.com/pages.asp?id=7210) that found umckaloaba effectively boosts the immune system to relieve symptoms such as congestion, sneezing and coughing.

Adaptogens help your body adapt to both physical and mental stress. Rhodiola Rosea, found in Purx Ultra Mind & Mood, is used by European athletes to improve performance. A study (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20308973) at the University of Rome found Rhodiola Rosea reduced lactate levels and muscle damage after exercise. Another study found Rhodiola Rosea stimulates the growth of neurons, which may help explain Rhodiola’s stress-reducing effects.

While overtraining can suppress your immune system, being a couch potato won’t ward off viral invaders. Studies show that those who exercise moderately get sick fewer times than sedentary folks. But if your exercise zeal leads to overtraining, taking an immune-boosting supplement can keep you off the couch and in the gym.

Buying the Best Immune Boosting Supplements

Whether you’re torn between the treadmill or the exercise bike, wavering between vegetarian or low-carb, or searching for the best immune supplements, a healthy lifestyle is fraught with choices and decisions. When it comes to finding the best immune boosting supplements, look for manufacturers that use all-natural ingredients, include health-boosting herbs and offer a no-hassle, money-back guarantee.

All-Natural Ingredients
When choosing the best immune supplements, look for all-natural ingredients. The supplement’s label, website and support staff will all indicate if the immune boosting vitamins you are considering are minimally processed from their natural forms.

No preservatives. Truly all-natural supplements do not contain preservatives, which may be carcinogenic. One preservative, sodium benzoate, is often touted as being safe. However, when sodium benzoate reacts with vitamin C, it becomes cancer-causing benzene.

No calories. A supplement with calories certainly won’t make you gain weight, but does indicate that it contains an ingredient you probably avoid: hydrogenated oil. Besides raising cholesterol, hydrogenated oil increases inflammation, according to the Mayo Clinic.

No artificial colors. Just as chemical-laden apples are shinier and more crimson than their organic counterparts, supplements with artificial colors look appealing. According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), however, artificial colors are also suspected of causing cancer, allergies and ADHD. (http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-504763_162-20009228-10391704.html)

Includes Herbs with Vitamins
As valuable as vitamins are to overall health, they represent only a small percentage of the health-promoting compounds found in nature. Many more substances exist in nature and work together with synergistic effects. Herbs contain countless of these immune boosting compounds.

These substances are known collectively as phytochemicals. According to Cancer.org, phytochemicals may lower cancer risk and strengthen immunity.

Some phytochemicals in herbs boosts immunity against viruses and bacteria. One herb, Umckaloabo, has been described by the Journal of Family Practice as a “promising treatment for the management of viral” upper respiratory tract infections. (http://www.jfponline.com/pages.asp?id=7210)

Hassle-Free, Money-Back Guarantee
Even if a supplement company offers a money-back guarantee, the fine-print in its return policy may make returning a product difficult. Many supplement companies require that the returned package be unopened. Sometimes the warranty only applies to your first order or only certain products. And many companies charge a restocking fee to discourage returns.

A hassle-free, money-back guarantee indicates the supplement manufacturer is confident regarding the effectiveness of its product. By offering a hassle-free, money-back guarantee, the manufacturer underwrites its own product and you won’t be left with the cost of poor-quality supplements.

The benefits of maintaining a healthy lifestyle are worth the forethought and research that goes into your health-promoting decisions. When it comes to buying the best immune supplements, choose a product that is all-natural, includes scientifically proven herbs and offers a money-back guarantee.

Best Natural Immune Booster for Everyone

Great nutrition is the best natural immune booster for everyone, yet eating well consistently is a difficult habit to develop. Knowing what nutritious food does for immune system support and where insidious food cravings come from will help you implement the following tips to make the most of the best natural immune booster for everyone.

Nutrition and Immunity
Nutritious food is essential in allowing your body to create new cells, including immune cells. Like any manufacturing process, using the best materials results in a high-quality product.

Eating food rich in vitamin E, such as sunflower seeds and almonds, produces healthy T-cells, according to researchers in Japan. Researchers found in another study vitamin E’s role in the immune system is enhanced with high levels of vitamin C.

Cravings Sabotage Nutrition
Food cravings for chocolate and potato chips have become more common than cravings for almonds and oranges. Researchers are beginning to unravel why our bodies crave self-destructive sustenance.

Research reveals food cravings are related to our emotional state. Researchers at the University of California found stressed rats preferred eating fat and sugar and the anxious rodents produced fewer stress hormones after binging. In another study, researchers found loneliness is a powerful trigger for comfort foods.

Scientists don’t want to only describe food cravings; they want to find tools to help us fight our unhealthy appetites.

Think about negative consequences.
Researchers at Columbia University concluded study subjects experienced fewer cravings while focusing on the negative consequences of food or cigarettes. Using brain imaging, researchers found focusing on negative consequences increased brain activity in regions responsible for cognitive control and decreased activity in regions responsible for reward recognition.

Focus on portion control, not perfection.
Researchers at Tufts University found moderation may be a more effective method to control craving than uncompromising self-denial. As part of a 6-month weight loss study, participants reported their food cravings and consumption. Participants who allowed themselves small portions of craved food reported fewer overall cravings and higher weight loss.

Imagine yourself healthy.
The Association for Psychological Science reports that guided imagery reduces food cravings. One study found that participants who visualized simple objects, such as a rainbow, reduced the intensity of their food cravings.

Your immune system functions thanks to a legion of cells. These cells are only as healthy as the diet from which it is made. Food cravings are just one of many obstacles your healthful diet faces. When unhealthy food is unavoidable, take high-quality vitamins to boost immune system function on the cellular level.

How Natural Supplements for Immune System Support Differ From Cold Medicines

Viral folklore tells us to “feed a cold, starve a fever” and “don’t drink milk” to prevent congestion. These ineffective “old wives’ tales” have been replaced with cold medicines. But modern drugs with their side effects and risks may not be the best answer to cold and flu season, either. Boosting your immunity with natural immune system supplements may make you healthier without the risks and side effects of over-the-counter medications.

Cold Medicines Mask Symptoms
Ingredients in cold medicines that are nearly unpronounceable mask symptoms, but don’t aid in healing. Doxylamine relieves sneezing and watery eyes, but does nothing to help your body heal. Pseudeophedrine works as a decongestant by shrinking blood vessels in your nose. But these and other synthetic chemicals in cold medicines don’t reduce the duration or severity of your cold.

Cold Medicines Produce Side Effects
The “less serious” side effects of cold medicine can be troublesome. Drowsiness, headaches, constipation and blurred vision are just a few of the side effects of one popular cold medicine. But if an over-the-counter medicine is making you irritable or nauseous, is it really making you feel better?

Your Immune System Can Stop Colds before They Begin
“The strength of our immune system is what makes the difference between who gets sick and who doesn’t,” according to Dr. Woodson Merrill of Beth Israel Medical Center in New York City.

Vitamins are natural immune system supplements. Researchers in Japan discovered that vitamin E is a “potent antioxidant” with a powerful effect on the immune system (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10714244). They found vitamin E plays a crucial role in the formation of T cells. They also found that vitamin E supplementation can reverse lowered immunity associated with aging. Studies focusing on vitamins C, D and A have found that these vitamins have similar immune-boosting effects.

Researchers have found that medicinal herbs boost immunity as well. One such herb, Umckaloaba, has antibacterial and antiviral properties. Researchers looking for an alternative to antibiotics studied umckaloaba’s effect on 468 patients with bronchitis (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12807337). They concluded that umckaloaba “clearly reduced the severity of symptoms and shortened the duration” of the illness by nearly two days.

Natural immune system supplements such as vitamin E and Umckaloaba do more than mask the symptoms of a cold. They give your immune system support so that your body’s natural defenses can keep you well. When you have a strong immune system, you are not only less likely to get sick, you won’t be plagued with the dizziness, diarrhea and insomnia that cold medicines can cause.