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Changes in the Gut: Staying One Step Ahead
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Changes in the Gut: Staying One Step Ahead 0

Did you know that your gut is mainly responsible for the critical functions of your body?

A healthy gut means healthy overall well-being, and many wide-ranging causes can change and affect gut health.

These changes can be from acute causes, such as gastrointestinal surgeries, to others, such as the normal aging process, affecting gastrointestinal motility.

Regardless of the reason, the intestines usually experience changes during the healing or aging process.

That said, despite any shifts, it’s essential to get back on track as soon as possible and make the gut the best it can be.

Here are a few things to consider.

What influences changes in the gut?

Let’s start with the concept of bacteria. 

Our gut has more than 100 trillion bacterias. Yup! You read that, right! But wait, bacteria is not a bad thing. 

The bacteria in our gut help digest food, absorb nutrients and manage our wellbeing.

Many of these bacteria are beneficial, and evidence has shown that good gut health is linked to supporting general health, including the immune system and brain.

The bacteria feed on dietary fiber while performing various duties, including helping to make vitamins B and K and breaking down dietary fiber.

This breakdown results in a release of beneficial, anti-inflammatory fatty acids, vital energy sources for our bodies.

Here’s another gut question you should ask yourself. 

Did you know that 70% of your immune system resides in your gut?

Most of the time, when your immune system is weak, it traces back to what is happening in your gut.

Just knowing that allows you to change what you are putting in your body to enhance your immune health.

For optimal immunity, detoxification and nourishment, your gut must be in balance.

It’s that simple.

Our brain and gut are connected by a network of neurons, chemicals, and hormones.

How does your body know when it’s hungry?

The gut-brain connection means that poor digestive health can even lead to mood disorders. 

Now, not all bacteria are good bacteria.

You need to get rid of some of the harmful bacteria and replace them with beneficial bacteria.

Probiotics can help with this! Note that an imbalance of bacteria, meaning more harmful bacteria, can lead to limited space for the good guys. 

However, certain gastrointestinal conditions can lead to changes in the gut’s microbial environment and result in poor health and wellness.

Common sources of gut-health changes include shifts in gut immunity, stomach acid, and gastrointestinal flora (that is, the ecosystem of over 400 bacterial species that make up the microbiome).

Some digestive changes—including compromised gut function—are simply caused by the aging process. 

This is because of our natural metabolic processes slow as we grow older.

How to Identify your Gut Problems

Look at your poop! Here's a chart to help you. 

Best ways to support common gastrointestinal changes

So how can we avoid intestinal changes that may affect gut health?

Here are some preventive strategies that may help keep your gastrointestinal health in check:

  • Get plenty of exercise.

To ward off age-related issues, including those associated with poor intestine health, aim for at least 30 minutes of exercise five days per week.

Physical activity will help you stay regular and may keep your digestive system in good working order.

  • Maintain a healthy weight. 

While frequent exercise is linked to weight management, a healthy weight can prevent digestive changes and age-related gut struggles.

Aim to consume healthy portion sizes and whole foods when possible.

  • Drink lots of water.

To promote a strong and healthy digestive tract, aim to drink fluids throughout the day.

Drink water until you no longer feel thirsty, and if you are taking any prescription medications, please discuss water intake directly with your supervising doctor before any changes.

Best Supplements to achieving a Healthy Gut

Many foods and supplements are connected to a healthy gut and a healthy digestive tract.

Some options to explore include:

1. Probiotics

Probiotics are another thing that can help you achieve a healthy gut.

Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that are good for your health, especially your digestive system.

Probiotics are known as the “good” bacteria that help keep your gut in top shape

Where are probiotics found?

Well, to answer your question, they’re not as hard to find as you think.

The foods listed above are known probiotic-rich foods. 

The importance of probiotics has long been known, but what about prebiotics?

To put it into simple words, prebiotics act as food for probiotics.

They are a type of fiber.

You’re probably already eating prebiotic-rich foods and may not even know it. 

While only strain-identified probiotics have been researched extensively for specific health benefits, fermented foods, such as kimchi, miso soup, kombucha, and kefir, are popular dietary sources of probiotics.

Most probiotics come from one of the following genera of bacteria:

Lactobacilli

This is the most common probiotic genus.

Found in yogurt, sauerkraut, and other fermented foods, lactobacilli can help support immune health, such as healthy nasal, sinus, and respiratory function.

Bifidobacteria

Another common and well-researched probiotic genus, specific Bifidobacteria strains, supports acute bowel distress and immune health and may help control body weight regulation.

2. Prebiotics

Prebiotics are fibrous carbs the human body cannot digest (but certain bacteria in the gut can).

They serve as food for probiotics and include oats, garlic, onions, apple skin, beans, and chicory root.

Much like probiotics, prebiotics encourages healthy digestion

3. Fiber

When it comes to improving our digestive health, fiber—also known as roughage—is crucial.

The body cannot digest it; instead, it passes through the stomach, small intestine, and colon more or less intact.

Fruits and vegetables, whole grains, beans, and legumes are all rich in fiber.

Fibrous ingredients are generally full of nutrients as well, which may enhance our absorption abilities.

There are two types of fiber, one of which is more closely linked to the digestive system:

Soluble fiber

Soluble fiber dissolves in water and may help support already healthy cholesterol and glucose levels. It is found in oats, beans, apples, peas, and other ingredients.

Insoluble fiber

Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water. It does, however, increase stool bulk and ensure material moves efficiently through the digestive tract.

Whole-wheat flour, nuts, bran, and vegetables like cauliflower and potatoes are good insoluble fiber sources.

Be sure to discuss your fiber intake with your healthcare practitioner to minimize the chances of discomfort.

4. Glutamine

This amino acid provides both a source of fuel and precursors for growth to the intestinal lining’s rapidly dividing cells.

5. Inner-leaf aloe

Sourced from the aloe vera plant, inner-leaf aloe has been shown in studies to support temporary digestive symptoms such as cramping, bloating, and flatulence.

It has also been shown to help a healthy intestinal lining.

6. Zinc-carnosine

Ideal for gastric comfort, zinc-carnosine works by supporting the healthy ecology and integrity of the stomach lining.

Your Gut is your second Brain

You’ve probably heard the expression, “prevention is the best form of medicine.” Prevention is admittedly king in a healthcare setting, but it also involves hard work and dedication.

SPMs & Omega-3 Fats: Powerful Immune Influencers 1

Inflammation has become a buzzword, a catch-all phrase, but SPM's and Omega 3 Oils can take care of that.

We evolved to become inflamed. We needed inflammation to cope with pathogens, predators, rivals, and physical injury.

Inflammation is when the body’s white blood cells are recruited and activated for a specific purpose.

Acute inflammation is triggered to help fight an infection or illness or heal an injury.

Unfortunately, the problem starts when inflammation doesn’t resolve.

There isn’t just one type of chronic inflammation.

There are different types of immune responses.

The type of inflammation that leads to chronic joint pain may differ from the kind of inflammation associated with cancer.

 

Just as another type of inflammation found in depression.

Many immunological cell types are communicating via many signals.

There are adaptive and innate immune pathways.

And We are at the learning-to-crawl stage with understanding the role of nutrition, nutrigenomics, supplements, and personalized lifestyle medicine in the resolution of chronic inflammation.

Many of us have been using omega-3 fats, such as fish oil, for managing inflammatory conditions.

Interestingly, fish oil and SPMs significantly impact our immune system and play an essential role in immune cells’ activity.

The key lies in how fats such as those found in fish oil influence our immune system’s white blood cells.

Our body uses these special fats, like EPA and DHA, to send chemical instructions to our immune cells.

These instructions determine how our immune cells behave.

For example, if we have an imbalance from other fats such as omega-6s (found in processed foods), our immune cells will get different instructions, which can weaken how we respond to infections and cause more damage from inflammation.

Omega 3 bebefits 

How Do Omega-3 Fats Fit Into This? 

Our bodies store some of the fats we eat in our cell membranes.

Those fats are used to create powerful chemical instructions for our immune cells.

 

Omega 3 and Omega 6 Benefits

Omega-3 and omega-6 fats can be made into eicosanoid molecule classes (“eye-cosa-noids”) and SPMs.

Eicosanoids, made from omega-3 and omega-6 fats, tell our immune cells to behave with more or less inflammation.

In general, the eicosanoids made from omega-6 fats are more inflammatory, and the ones made from omega-3s are less inflammatory.

When it comes to infections, we know that inflammation is a necessary “second line” defense process.

While we want to keep the response contained to cause more damage than preventing it.

 

 

 Over Reactive Immune and Inflammatory States

 We see the effects of the chemical signals from omega-3 fats on our immune system very early on in our lives.

By age 3, children who don’t get enough omega-3 fats in their diet are more likely to develop asthma and allergic conditions, like eczema.

These conditions are examples of what happens when our immune system overreacts.

The immune cells recognize a substance (like food or dust) that they would usually tolerate.

Yet, we will treat the substance like something they need to get out of our body.

With infections such as COVID-19, we see an over-exuberant inflammatory response from the immune system resulting in a cytokine storm.

This causes dangerous blood clots.

During severe COVID infections, this cytokine storm can cause immune cells to flood into the lungs, causing intense lung tissue damage.

At these stages, the immune-mediating effects from omega-3 fatty acids may not be enough.

Under high levels of inflammation, omega-3 fats can be susceptible to damage from oxidation.

Sustained high levels of oxidative stress in the body can lead to chronic immune activation and mitochondrial dysfunction.

As a result, it leads to more oxidative stress. So, how might omega-3 fats help our bodies improve their immune response?

 omega 3 benefits

Specialized Pro-Resolving Mediators

 

 Fish oil supplements can reduce inflammation while at the same time increasing immune defenses.

Supplementing omega-6 fats to recently diagnosed breast cancer patients resulted in similar immune-modulating effects.

These benefiting effects include the protective benefits while dampening the destructive ones.

Much of SPM research has looked at how our immune cells respond to infectious and inflammatory signals.

We know when healthy immune cells are exposed to disease-causing bacteria ( E. coli or S. aureus), they produce double the variety and 10 times the average amount of SPMs.

These are mechanisms explaining how SPMs influence innate and adaptive immune responses.

This may clarify why we see an overlap of conditions associated with SPM deficits and those most affected by severe infections.

Omega 3 oil for the brain

SPMs & Omega-3 Fats Conclusion

Both omega-3 fats and SPMs are naturally occurring compounds in our bodies.

Yet, they are commonly low due to low dietary intake and potential endogenous production issues.

It’s important to consider how these actions are carried out by the immune system’s cells.

Given the rising concern of infectious diseases and their effects on those with preexisting inflammatory conditions.

SPMs are critical to our body’s ability to return to homeostasis—to “bounce back” from inflammatory stressors.

SPM research is rapidly expanding and demonstrating how these compounds influence immune cell behavior.

The discovery of inflammation resolution and SPMs health benefits provides us with a new way of viewing and understanding inflammation.

More importantly, how we can support cellular resilience and overall health.

Zinc Benefits: Essential For The Immune System Functions 0

Zinc's role in life can't be understated. In fact, the element appears to be a crucial component of the meeting between sperm and egg.

A December 2014 video, published alongside a study in the journal Nature Chemistry, shows the fireworks of fertilization as an egg releases "sparks" of zinc after enveloping a sperm.

Researchers are still exploring this phenomenon, but they have discovered that the egg cannot develop without the zinc eruptions.

The zinc fireworks could have real-world applications for women dealing with infertility.

oisters and zinc

Fun fact  "Oysters have the highest amount of the mineral zinc per serving in any food. Zinc, a substance that increases human vitality and energy

According to the US Department of Agriculture’s FoodData Central, one raw Pacific oyster contains 18.9 mg zinc, or 172% daily value for adults"

 

Zinc and Your Health

Zinc is an essential mineral that is naturally present in some foods, added to others, and available as a dietary supplement.

This beneficial mineral, Zinc is also found in many cold lozenges and some over-the-counter drugs sold as cold remedies.

Intimately involved in immune responses

When it comes to improving immune health, many people think of zinc immediately.

Although zinc does not “work” alone, it is indeed vital for supporting virtually every stage of an immune response when our bodies encounter pathogens (e.g., virus and bacteria) or dangers (e.g., tissue damage caused by oxidative stress or toxins). For example:

  • Zinc helps maintain the integrity of the physical and biochemical barriers such as skin and mucous membranes (mucosal cells) in the respiratory and gastrointestinal tract to block pathogens’ entry.
  • Zinc supports differentiation and proliferation of innate immune cells and enhances their functioning, such as monocyte phagocytic capacity and natural killer cell cytotoxic activity.
  • Zinc has antioxidant properties that protect against reactive oxygen species (ROS).
  • Zinc is important for the development and activation of T lymphocytes supporting adaptive immune responses.
  • Zinc is involved in the production of the antibody IgG.
  • Zinc supports the production of antimicrobial substances such as interferon-gamma (IFNγ) that deter microbes’ growth.
Zinc benefits

 

Zinc deficiency can be corrected by eating foods rich in zinc or via supplementation of zinc. In a cell model of an inflammatory condition, zinc treatment inhibited NLRP3 inflammasome activation.

It was achieved via activation of the Nrf2 antioxidant pathway and reduced production of reactive oxygen species.

 

Zinc and Age-related Macular Degeneration 

Researchers have suggested that both zinc and antioxidants delay the progression of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and vision loss, possibly by preventing cellular damage in the retina.

In a population-based cohort study in the Netherlands, high dietary intake of zinc and beta carotene, vitamin C, and vitamin E was associated with reduced risk of AMD in elderly subjects.

However, the authors of a systematic review and meta-analysis published in 2007 concluded that zinc is not effective for the primary prevention of early AMD, although zinc might reduce the risk of progression to advanced AMD.

Zinc supplementation alone significantly reduced the risk of developing advanced AMD in subjects at higher risk but not in the total study population.

Visual acuity loss was not significantly affected by zinc supplementation alone.

A follow-up AREDS2 study confirmed the value of this supplement in reducing AMD progression over a median follow-up period of 5 years.

zinc and Macular Degeneration

AREDS2 found that a formulation providing 25 mg zinc (about one-third the amount in the original formulation) provided the same protective effect against developing advanced AMD.

However, because AREDS2 had fewer participants than the original AREDS study, fewer than half took the lower zinc formula, the researchers view this finding as preliminary.

They recommend the use of an AREDS formulation providing 80 mg zinc.

Two other small clinical trials evaluated the effects of supplementation with 200 mg zinc sulfate (providing 45 mg zinc) for 2 years in subjects with drusen or macular degeneration.

Zinc supplementation significantly reduced visual acuity loss in one study but did not affect the other.

A Cochrane review concluded that the evidence supporting the use of antioxidant vitamins and zinc for AMD comes primarily from the AREDS study.

Individuals who have or are developing AMD should talk to their healthcare provider about taking a zinc-containing AREDS supplement.

 

Zinc Interactions with Iron and Copper

Iron-deficiency anemia is a serious worldwide public health problem.

Iron fortification programs have been credited with improving the iron status of millions of women, infants, and children.

Fortification of foods with iron does not significantly affect zinc absorption. However, large amounts of supplemental iron (greater than 25 mg) might decrease zinc absorption.

Taking iron supplements between meals helps reduce its effect on zinc absorption.

High zinc intakes can inhibit copper absorption, sometimes producing copper deficiency and associated anemia.

For this reason, dietary supplement formulations containing high levels of zinc, such as the one used in the AREDS study, sometimes contain copper.

Deficiency Negatively Impacting Health

According to the World Health Organization, even a mild zinc deficiency is relatively common at approximately 31% worldwide, contributing to a weaker cell-mediated immune response.

In populations at risk of zinc deficiency, preventive zinc supplementation has been shown to improve pregnancy outcomes, reduce death in children from infectious illnesses such as diarrhea and acute lower respiratory infections, lowers all-cause mortality, and increases linear growth and weight gain among infants and young children.

zinc benefits

Zinc supplementation during episodes of diarrhea reduced duration and severity. Studies using oral zinc supplementation repeatedly show a significant reduction in infection duration, with most of the research exploring the effects of zinc on the common cold.

The recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for men is 11mg/day, and women are 8mg/day.4 Unfortunately, dietary intake of zinc in the US has been inadequate.

Older adults, vegetarians, and people with chronic inflammatory conditions or renal disease are especially at risk of deficiency.

Zinc deficiency has been linked to impaired immune functions.

Its clinical impact can be detrimental, such as increased susceptibility to infections, including viral infections of the respiratory tract, increased diarrhea and pneumonia, impaired wound healing, and increased risk of inflammatory and autoimmune disorders.

Zinc Improves Various Health Conditions

There is strong clinical evidence demonstrating the benefits of zinc supplementation on immune health. Here are only some of the examples:

  • Zinc supplementation at 30 mg/day for 3 months effectively increased serum zinc concentration in the elderly (65 y/o or older living in a nursing homes), which improved T cell proliferation.
  • Zinc supplementation at 45 mg/day for 1 year significantly reduced infection incidence, levels of inflammatory cytokines, and markers of oxidative stress in elderly subjects.
  • In a meta-analysis involving common cold patients, zinc (as lozenges) use led to a reduction in common cold duration by nearly 3 days.
  • Zinc supplementation reduced otitis media incidence (inflammation of the middle ear caused by infection) in young children without causing severe adverse events.
  • A meta-analysis demonstrated that zinc supplementation significantly reduced the frequency and severity of diarrhea and respiratory tract infections in children.

Zinc and Dietary supplements

Supplements contain several forms of zinc, including zinc gluconate, zinc sulfate, and zinc acetate. The percentage of elemental zinc varies by form. For example, approximately 23% of zinc sulfate consists of essential zinc; thus, 220 mg of zinc sulfate contains 50 mg of elemental zinc. 

The fundamental zinc content appears in the Supplement Facts panel on the supplement container. Research has not determined whether differences exist among forms of zinc in absorption, bioavailability, or tolerability.

In addition to standard tablets and capsules, some zinc-containing cold lozenges are labeled as dietary supplements.

Other Zinc Sources

Zinc is present in several products, including some labeled as homeopathic medications, sold over the counter to treat and prevent colds.

Numerous case reports of anosmia (loss of the sense of smell), in some cases long-lasting or permanent, have been associated with the use of zinc-containing nasal gels or sprays. 

In June 2009, the FDA warned consumers to stop using three zinc-containing intranasal products because they might cause anosmia.

The manufacturer recalled these products from the marketplace.

Currently, these safety concerns are not associated with cold lozenges containing zinc.

Did You Know? 

  • Zinc makes up 70 milligrams of every kilogram of the Earth's crust, on average, according to the IZA. 

  • There's zinc in your pocket: Pennies are 97.5 percent zinc and only 2.5 percent, copper.

  • Most people get plenty of zinc through their food. But zinc supplements may be useful for women who struggle with depression and irritability before their periods. A 2013 study found that supplementing at least 15 milligrams a day of zinc was associated with a lower risk of premenstrual syndrome, or PMS.

Zinc Benefits Summary

Immune support is an important aspect of patient care to address year-round, but perhaps especially during cold and flu season.

Lifestyle strategies, including proper handwashing and rest, as well as personalized supplement plans, offer safe and effective ways to support a healthy immune response and reduce the risk of acute illnesses.

There is very strong evidence supporting zinc’s role in immune functions, but zinc benefits go beyond supporting immune health. 

Many studies have demonstrated zinc’s role in managing type 2 diabetes, age-related macular degeneration, depression, and more.

Therefore, it is important to maintain an adequate dietary intake of zinc.

 So next time you see oysters in a restaurant (after measures of social distancing have been lifted, of course), be sure to thank them. Or better yet, eat them!

Before Your Get The Covid-19 Vaccine, You Must Read This
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Before Your Get The Covid-19 Vaccine, You Must Read This 0

Numerous COVID-19 vaccines are being tested around the world, and billions of people will receive a COVID-19 vaccine in hopes of returning some normalcy to their lives and communities.

We aim to help you and your loved ones build resilient immunity through a healthy lifestyle and optimal nutrition.

When our immune systems embody resilience, we have rapid, controlled responses to immune threats and reduce the inflammatory collateral damage to our bodies.

Covid-19 Vaccine 101

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), "Vaccines help develop immunity by imitating an infection.

However, this type of infection rarely causes illness, but it does cause the immune system to produce T-lymphocytes and antibodies.

Afterward, the body is left with a supply of 'memory' T-lymphocytes, as well as B-lymphocytes that will remember how to fight that disease in the future.

 

Covid -19 Vaccine High Risk Factors

 While we might not have specific data related to factors that influence a COVID-19 vaccine for years, responses to other viral vaccines (such as flu) may be valuable in helping forecast demographic factors when it comes to efficacy and adverse effects

AGE

In general, vaccines are less effective in older people; unfortunately, they are most vulnerable to COVID-19.

In the well-studied influenza vaccine, age-related declines in immune function and age-related chronic inflammation may be responsible for a lower response in older adults.

Older people may need higher vaccine doses to get adequate responses. 

 

SEX

Females tend to have higher antibody responses to influenza vaccination, but they also experience more adverse reactions.

Reactions such as:

  • Muscle pain
  • Redness at the injection area
  • Systemic reactions such as fever
  • Chills
  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Body aches are more frequent among females

 

OBESITY

The chronic inflammation associated with obesity has systemic implications for immunity.

A possible explanation in this population is due to inferior T cell function.

 

Covid -19 Vaccine Lifestyle Risk Factors

 

Physical wellness

Exercise is vital for cellular activity, which, in turn, helps tissue in your organs to perform to their optimum.

One small study in participants over 62 years showed that those who intensely exercised over 60 minutes per week increased their antibody response to flu vaccine compared to sedentary controls.

Some significant effects of exercise: Reduces inflammation and incidence of autoimmune disease, improves oxygen delivery to your cells and organs and reduces the production of obesity-related hormones.

Emotional wellness

Our bodies release cortisol quickly provide energy, reduce swelling, lower immunity, and increase blood pressure response to stress.

There is some evidence showing that adults or older individuals with chronic psychological stress had lower antibody responses after flu vaccination.

Prolonged stress can create an imbalance that can wreak havoc on your body.

Blood sugar imbalances, poor sleep, bad diet, and leaky gut are a sample of stressors that can create chronic stress.  

Sleep

Sleep has a significant influence on immune function, so it is essential to get plenty of sleep.

Shortened sleep in the week of hepatitis B vaccine lowers antibody responses.

Poor sleep can amplify various conditions such as cardiovascular disease, obesity, respiratory diseases, dental conditions, and chronic pain.

Crucial Factor To Beat Covid-19

Practice good sleep hygiene, ensure cool temperatures, 60-68F, are best for sleep, avoid nicotine close to bedtime, keep a consistent sleep schedule, even on the weekends, and avoid cell phones and other devices before bedtime.  

Environmental Wellness

Our bodies are always under attack from environmental toxins.

Toxic particles are in our water, food, and the surrounding air.

As more toxins accumulate over time, it becomes inflammatory and more difficult for the body to detoxify.

In effect, this increases susceptibility to chronic disease, cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s, coronary heart disease, and respiratory disease.

Detoxification of these chemicals is performed by the kidneys, lungs, skin, liver, and digestive system.

 

What Supplements I Need to Be Ready For The Covid-19 Vaccine?

Micronutrients Micronutrients

including vitamins, minerals, and trace elements, are critical components for the billions of chemical activities in your body for normal function or homeostasis.

A few examples of these activities that require various micronutrients include digestion, brain activity, liver detoxification, proper immune and thyroid function, and normal neuromusculoskeletal function!

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Vitamin A

Extremely helpful in supporting the body’s ability to fight infections, particularly concerning respiratory infections.

Current evidence on vitamin A is equivocal to improving vaccine response and depends on the population's age, sex, the vaccine being tested, and patients' baseline vitamin A levels.  



Vitamin C

Helps prevent infections caused by bacteria and viruses.

Shortening the duration of colds and a higher doses of vitamin C during an illness act as a natural antihistamine and anti-inflammatory.

 

Vitamin D

Regulates and boosts the immune response by up-regulating specific genes and reduces the risk of colds/flus.

Ideal for elderly patients or those with low levels of Vitamin D.

For daily supplementation and maintenance lower dose of D3 offers the best protection.

Several studies have recently shown that vitamin D levels are associated positively with better outcomes of COVID-19 infection in hospitalized patients.

This suggests that it would be prudent to ensure that patients have adequate intake and levels of key vitamins like A and D.

Melatonin

A hormone that plays a key role in regulating the body’s circadian rhythm and aiding healthy sleep patterns.

Another great benefit of Melatonin is that It also maintains normal inflammatory balance.

Zinc

Zinc is important to innate and acquired immunity that supports natural killer (NK) cells and T-cells' maturation, which are important in response to infections and vaccines.

Low zinc in elderly populations is tied to increased susceptibility, longer illnesses, and increased mortality.

Supplementing 20 mg of Zinc a day in the elderly can restore activity to thymulin, a hormone that matures T cells.

Selenium

A key nutrient and an antioxidant closely tied to the immune system boost the body's defenses against bacteria, viruses, and cancer cell. Yes, Selenium is an essential supplement.

It may significantly help to protect against certain strains of the flu virus.  

Prebiotics and Probiotics

Probiotics contain "good bacteria" that support the gut's health, influence immune system functioning, and help decrease the number of respiratory infections.

The importance of probiotics has long been known, but what about prebiotics? To put it into simple words, prebiotics act as food for probiotics.

Prebiotics are fibrous carbs the human body cannot digest (but certain bacteria in the gut can).

They serve as food for probiotics and include oats, garlic, onions, apple skin, beans, and chicory root.

Much like probiotics, prebiotics encourage healthy digestion.

Prebiotics and probiotics had the largest effects when given before vaccination, and the results increased with the length of time they were supplemented.

Enhancing intestinal immune function through probiotics appears to enhance the production of antigen-specific antibodies in response to vaccination.

A 2018 systematic review found that various strains of probiotics can increase efficacy for 17 different vaccines.

Probiotic administration may also increase the length of time a vaccine is effective.  

Covid-19 Prevention Bundle

We have created a Covid-19 Prevention bundle with all the supplements you need to optimize immune system for the introduction of de Covid-19 virus via vaccination. 

A Recommendation For Those Taking the Covid-19 Vaccination

A COVID-19 vaccine will not be a “one-size-fits-all” therapy.

Many people will either not be good candidates or choose not to get a vaccine for various reasons.

The evidence presented in this document is explicitly related to factors that may impact vaccine efficacy.

Providers will be aware that there is a much greater body of evidence to support the role of diet, lifestyle, and supplement interventions in enhancing natural immunity.

We have compiled clinically actionable resources related to COVID-19 and supporting immune health.

It's important to reiterate, the interventions discussed in this piece and the resources linked have not been studied to COVID-19 but are intended to inform medical professionals to help their patients navigate this challenging and ever-changing landscape.

We hope to help clinicians and their patients have meaningful, informed discussions to choose options that best fit the individual patient.