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Should You Really Take Immune-Boosting Supplements When You're Sick?

"We all know that we need certain vitamins to repair and heal our body, and it has been proven that zinc and vitamin C help protect the body before you get sick or leave," says Aileen Marty, MD. a professor specializing in infectious diseases at Florida International University. According to a 2013 study on the effectiveness of vitamin C for colds, it is especially useful for people who are very active or have physically demanding tasks. but the jury is still on whether it can do a lot for the general population (some studies have shown that it reduces the duration of colds by about a day, but not enough to be conclusive). Meanwhile, research has also linked zinc to a faster recovery of cold symptoms.

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More is not always better

Here's the rub: when & nbsp; Water-soluble vitamins, such as vitamins B and C, the body can only absorb very little. "If you take too much, you will waste your money because you will only pee," says Marty (the same thing seems to go for zinc, the body stores only a minimal amount) .that to be a waste of money, take a bunch of vitamin C will not hurt you

This is not the case for several other vitamins that can be found in immuno-stimulant supplements. Fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K, can cause problems when 39, they are taken in large doses.They are absorbed in the small intestine and then stored in the liver and adipose tissue.It is much more fac To reach dangerous levels with fat soluble vitamins because they accumulate over time Overdose of vitamin A, for example, can cause vision changes, bone pain and damage to the liver According to the National Institutes of Health, supplements are the main reason for the toxicity of vitamin A.

Unfortunately, experts are not sure how much exactly it costs. Health care professionals and nutritionists advise not to take more than 100 percent of your recommended daily intake (RDA) of vitamins or minerals through supplements alone, says Marty. (You can find information on your RDA for certain vitamins and minerals here.)

For the record: Immune-stimulating supplements often contain vitamin concentrations that far exceed your RDA. For example, a sachet of Emergen-C Immune + Super Orange contains 1 667% of your daily vitamin C intake and 500% of your daily vitamin B6 intake. And a dose of Airborne contains nearly 17 times the AJR of vitamin C, more than 100 percent of the AJR of selected B vitamins, 40 percent of the AJR of the Vitamin A and a day of vitamin E.

dosing instructions and only take the cold-fighting supplement for a short period of time, there is very little risk of toxicity, says Marty. However, the more you take large amounts of fat soluble vitamins, the more they can accumulate in your body. That's why these immunity boosting supplements are only meant for short-term use, she adds.

Related: The symptoms of colon cancer that any young woman should know

There is a better way to boost your immune system

"The best thing to do is to stay healthy every day by eating well and exercise, "says Marty.

That's right. As for vitamins and minerals, it's always best to adopt a diet-oriented mentality. If you are looking for Vitamin C, try yellow peppers, guava, kale, papaya and strawberries, all of which have more vitamin C than an orange.For zinc, add foods like seafood and yogurt to your diet Basically, as long as you eat a complete diet that is rich in vegetables, products, meats and dairy products, you should get all the nutrients you need for a strong immune system. if your doctor finds If you have nutrient deficiencies, complete it specifically and follow your doctor's dosing instructions, she says.

Related: 10 foods that will help you survive colds and flu without catching FA

Meanwhile, research shows that exercise can actually stimulate cells that help our immune system and reduce l & # 39; ignition. For example, a 2015 study from the University of Houston revealed that a single exercise of moderate intensity, such as jogging or moderate weight lifting, activates the immune system to fight the condition. ;infection.

So maybe consider replacing your supplements with a rainbow. filled plate – with one side of the exercise.

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