Whats Best For Boosting Your Immune System Sleep Superfoods Exercise Or Supplements
How do your body’s natural defences work against COVID-19 and the flu? Experts comment on whether sleeping, hydrating and exercising more really help and whether you should spend money on supplements.
If theres one thing that probably wont change in the new year during these pandemic times, its our desire for healthier practices such as getting more sleep or devoting more time to self-care.
Topping many peoples lists is something weve been trying to do a lot these past couple of years: Strengthening our immune system against COVID-19.
And most recently, against a globally growing phenomenon: Flurona, when you get infected with both the influenza virus and COVID-19 coronavirus, either simultaneously or back to back.
But first, what is the immune system about? The bodys natural defence doesnt just consist of one organ that does all the work, according to Dr Leong Hoe Nam, an infectious diseases physician at Rophi Clinic, Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital. It is, in fact, a complex network consisting of white blood cells, antibodies, spleen, bone marrow and thymus, he said.
Then, there are the complement system and the lymphatic system , said Melanie Anthonysamy, the nutrition team lead at HealthifyMe.
She added that there are other lines of defence as well. These include the lungs , digestive tract , skin and other bodily fluids .
DOES EATING MORE SUPERFOODS HELP?
Vitamin C And Pregnant Women And Nursing Mothers
One thing to double check with your health care provider about is how much vitamin from any sort of supplement you should consume when pregnant or nursing. I have gotten different answers on this question. The most conservative response is probably given by Medline Plus
They say, Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Vitamin C is LIKELY SAFE for pregnant or breast-feeding women when taken in the recommended amount of 120 mg per day. Taking too much vitamin C during pregnancy can cause problems for the newborn baby.
Two dieticians answer that question here, a summery being that eating vitamin C rich food and taking a multi-vitamin will give you plenty of vitamin C , and the second opinion being that you shouldnt take over 2,000 MG of added vitamin C per day.
You can also get helpful charts for general info on recommended amounts of vitamin C from WebMD, where they also point out that, A substantial number of Americans may have low intake levels of vitamin C due to the inadequate intake of fruits and vegetables.
The point is this vitamin C is an important vitamin, but you can over do it, especially if you are pregnant or nursing. Many midwives recommend the higher amount , so there is a wide range of advice in how much to take when pregnant is optimal.
For the rest of us, it makes sense to me to get our vitamin C from food as much as possible which is why I love this recipe!
Take Your Supplement After Exercise
People who exercise are probably no stranger to the effects movement can take on their GI tracts. In fact, some 30 to 50 percent of athletes experience intestinal problems related to exercise, according to a May 2014 review in Sports Medicine.
“Exercise notoriously gets things going,” Dr. Jouhourian says. She recommends taking a supplement after a workout, and perhaps more importantly, while eating, which can help settle the stomach.
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Take A Safe Zinc Supplement
As these studies and case reviews clearly illustrate, the safest way to approach zinc supplementation is with a low dose designed to supplement a healthy diet of foods containing zinc. This helps reduce the risk of suffering from a zinc overdose and lowers the risk of developing a copper deficiency.
Immune Super Boost contains 20 mg of zinc along with helpful natural ingredients such as elderberry extract and echinacea that help your body build a strong immune system.â Healthycell’s gel liquid vitamin for adults contains nutrients that have been shown to slow viral replication and help support your body’s ability to protect against infection.â With advanced MICROGEL technology, absorption is improved by providing small, soluble, nutrient particles that are absorbed in the digestive tract, making this type of supplementation more effective than pills.
If you prefer to take a multivitamin that also supports your body’s zinc needs, the Bioactive Multi and Vegan Essentials are excellent multivitamin options with 11 mg of zinc each. Before beginning any zinc supplement it is important to consult with your doctor and disclose all supplements to ensure that you are not at risk for copper deficiency.
Possibility Of Cardiovascular Disease
Vitamin C is well known for its antioxidant properties that protect the body from diseases. But can one have too much of a good thing? Possibly, under some conditions. One study showed that high doses of vitamin C supplements can trigger cardiovascular disease in individuals who already have other underlying health conditions consuming over 300 mg per day of vitamin C supplements was associated with cardiovascular disease among postmenopausal women with diabetes. However, this was observed only in a single study and is not established firmly yet.10
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Excessive Intake Of Vitamin C Can Produce Negative Interactions
Taking a Vitamin C supplement in a higher dosage than whats recommended can have adverse interactions, especially if youre on certain medications.
Some medicines contain aluminum such as phosphate binders. Taking more than 2,000 mg in supplement form can increase your absorption of aluminum. This can be harmful to people suffering from kidney problems.
If youre taking an oral contraceptive or are on a hormone replacement therapy, taking an excess of Vitamin C in supplement form may increase your estrogen levels.
Talk to your doctor if youre on chemotherapy. Using antioxidants like Vitamin C while undergoing chemotherapy may reduce the drugs effects. However, speak with your physician first as there is a difference in opinion on antioxidants and its effects on chemotherapy.
Taking Vitamin C orally in supplement form may reduce the effects of protease inhibitors. And if youre taking Vitamin C with niacin, Warfarin, Coumadin or Jantoven, it may reduce the effects the prescribed drug is supposed to have on your body.
When To See A Doctor
Anyone who is experiencing any of these symptoms or suspects that their job has exposed them to too much zinc should seek emergency care or call a poison control center right away.
It is also important to discuss any nutritional or vitamin supplements with a doctor before starting to take them. Doing this is especially important if a person is taking other medications or has a medical condition that the extra zinc intake could affect.
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Too Much Vitamin C May Cause Digestive Symptoms
The most common side effect of high vitamin C intake is digestive distress.
In general, these side effects do not occur from eating foods that contain vitamin C, but rather from taking the vitamin in supplement form.
Youre most likely to experience digestive symptoms if you consume more than 2,000 mg at once. Thus, a tolerable upper limit of 2,000 mg per day has been established (
Ingesting more than 2,000 mg of vitamin C per day may lead to gastrointestinal upset, including symptoms like diarrhea and nausea.
Vitamin C is known to enhance iron absorption.
It can bind to non-heme iron, which is found in plant foods. Non-heme iron is not absorbed by your body as efficiently as heme iron, the type of iron found in animal products .
Vitamin C binds with non-heme iron, making it much easier for your body to absorb. This is an important function, especially for individuals who get most of their iron from plant-based foods .
One study in adults found that iron absorption increased by 67% when they took 100 mg of vitamin C with a meal .
However, individuals with conditions that increase the risk of iron accumulation in the body, such as hemochromatosis, should be cautious with vitamin C supplements.
Under these circumstances, taking vitamin C in excess may lead to iron overload, which can cause serious damage to your heart, liver, pancreas, thyroid, and central nervous system .
Zinc: Sources And Dosing
One of the most common questions among those taking zinc to boost their immune system is “Can you take too much zinc?” After all, it is used in over 100 chemical interactions that occur daily within the body . Therefore, some assume that more zinc would be beneficial to the body. However, excessive amounts of this mineral can be dangerous and experts recommend monitoring foods containing zinc in your diet while also consuming a zinc supplement.
When taken in appropriate amounts, zinc is used by the body to improve taste perception, DNA synthesis, encourage growth, support healing, and boost immune function and reproductive health. Clearly, these are all important bodily functions, which is why consuming foods containing zinc on a daily basis is vital.
Most national health organizations list 40mg of zinc as the upper limit for daily consumption, so it is key to understand the amount of zinc that is in your vitamins vs. how much zinc you consume through your diet.
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Can You Use Too Much Vitamin C On Your Face
Vitamin C serums and creams are one of those beauty products that can give you an almost instant boost of brightness and glow, but are there limits to how much you should use? And how high of a strength of Vitamin C is too high?
In this article, we will look into how much Vitamin C content you should look for in your creams and serums, and how often you should use them.
/5how Much Vitamin C Does Your Body Need
As per studies, the recommended amount of Vitamin C is between 65-90 milligrams per day. The upper limit is 2000 mg/day. Understanding it in terms of food quantities, one orange contains around 51 mg of Vitamin C. Thus, consuming two oranges per day is more than enough to provide you with a daily dose of vitamin C.
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How To Handle An Overdose On Vitamin C
If youre healthy, theres no way you can die from a Vitamin C overdose. However, if you do have health conditions, taking too much Vitamin C in supplement form can have some serious consequences.
If youre experiencing symptoms such as nausea, cramping or headaches, you could also benefit from using some over-the-counter drugs.
If you suspect youre overdosing on Vitamin C and youre taking prescription medicines or have a health condition, speak with your doctor. And, if the conditions persist or youre experiencing serious side effects such as difficulty breathing or kidney stones, contact your doctor.
Your physician can then assess the situation and take actions such as ordering tests and procedures and/or offering a prescription to help ease your symptoms and preventing any further harm being done to your body.
Make Sure To Store Your Vitamin C Products Correctly
In topical skin-care products, vitamin C is sensitive to light and air. When exposed to these factors, it becomes oxidized to dehydroascorbic acid, which is less stable and less efficacious, Dr. Hogan explains. So these products should be stored in opaque containers that are either air-restrictive or air-tight, she says, like an airless pump rather than a tub or dropper bottle that requires being opened all the way.
Luckily, many vitamin C products already come in opaque containers for this exact reason, Dr. Lamb says.
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What Is The Most Important Information I Should Know About Ascorbic Acid
You should not use ascorbic acid if you have ever had an allergic reaction to a vitamin C supplement.
Ask a doctor or pharmacist about using ascorbic acid if you have:
- kidney disease or a history of kidney stones
- hereditary iron overload disorder or
- if you smoke .
Your dose needs may be different during pregnancy or while you are breast-feeding a baby. Do not use ascorbic acid without your doctor’s advice in either case.
Use Your Vitamin C Products At The Right Point In Your Skin
The right moment to use your product depends on what kind of product it is, Dr. Hogan explains. For serums, you want to apply your vitamin C product to freshly cleansed skin, but before you moisturize. But antioxidant-containing moisturizers are also becoming more common, Dr. Lamb says, and youd want to use those at the end of your routine.
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How To Take Ascorbic Acid
Use Ascorbic Acid exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
Use exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
The recommended dietary allowance of vitamin C increases with age. Follow your healthcare provider’s instructions. You may also consult the Office of Dietary Supplements of the National Institutes of Health, or the U.S. Department of Agriculture Nutrient Database listings for more information.
Drink plenty of liquids while you are taking ascorbic acid.
The chewable tablet must be chewed before you swallow it.
Ascorbic acid gum may be chewed as long as desired and then thrown away.
Do not crush, chew, or break an extended-release tablet. Swallow it whole.
Measure liquid medicine with a special dose-measuring spoon or medicine cup. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.
Keep the orally disintegrating tablet in the package until you are ready to take it. Use dry hands to remove the tablet and place it in your mouth. Do not swallow the tablet whole. Allow it to dissolve in your mouth without chewing. Swallow several times as the tablet dissolves.
Store ascorbic acid at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
Side Effects Of Vitamin C
Having too much Vitamin C is unlikely to be overly harmful to us, but massive doses can cause diarrhea, nausea, heartburn, stomach cramps and headaches. You need to find what balance is right for your body.
Another side effect that many are not aware of is the effect Vitamin C can have on our teeth. Understanding that this vitamin is actually an acid makes it easier for us to come to recognise the potential dangers involved in having those refreshing pieces of lemon in our water.
We think that by eating oranges and sipping lemon water all day will help improve our immunity and help ward off colds and flus. Now we know that it certainly does help with this, but it can also erode our precious tooth enamel.
The acid in the citrus fruit is just as bad for our teeth, if not worse, than the popular soft drinks that we are all so cautious of.
When patients come into the clinic and tell us they have been experiencing some sensitivity in their teeth, we ask about their diet. Have you been drinking lots of soft drink or juice?
When we examine their teeth, we can often easily see the effects that this acid has had. Sadly, sometimes the enamel has been washed away completely. We then recommend that they use a sensitive toothpaste to help alleviate the symptoms.
We also need to be aware of the same corrosive effects of chewing Vitamin C tablets. These tablets stick to your teeth and can then remain on your teeth for longer periods of time.
Do Dogs Need Vitamin C Supplements
Since dogs can produce vitamin C in their bodies, many dog parents wonder if they need to give their dogs vitamin C tablets.
True, dogs can make vit C in their bodies, but if a dog is stressed or sick, their bodies’ output of vitamin C can quickly be depleted.
In fact, it has been found that stress, both physical and emotional , is the best-known cause of vitamin C depletion in dogs.
In addition, it has been found that dogs supplemented with vitamin C have stronger immune systems and show greater resistance to disease, and a better ability to recover from illness or injuries.
Too Much Copper In Your Multivitamin Can Cause Behavior Changes
Chances are when you hear the word copper, pennies and jewelry are more likely to come to mind than supplements. But copper a mineral essential for your bones, ligaments, and joints is commonly found in multivitamins. While normal copper blood levels range from 70 to 140 micrograms per deciliter , anything higher than that can lead to copper toxicity .
As Healthline explained, the side effects of too much copper can be physical, mental, and behavioral. Beyond headaches, fever, and black stool, copper poisoning can also cause jaundice yellowing of the skin and the white part of the eye. Someone with excessive copper levels may experience sudden mood changes, and become irritable, depressed, or overexcited. And in the long term, this type of poisoning can lead to heart and liver failure, brain damage, and death.
In addition to supplements, substantial amounts of copper can be found in such foods as quinoa, dark chocolate, soybeans, crabs, liver, and asparagus . Also, if your home uses copper pipes, you may have high levels of copper in your water supply. Pipe corrosion, industrial waste, and runoff from nearby farms can also increase the copper toxicity of your water.
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