It only makes sense, especially now, to stay as healthy and prepared as possible. In speaking with Dr. Kevin Sprouse, he had very sound advice "The things we should be doing in every cold and flu season are all the more important right now".
Let's step back, let's look at what works, what is good advice, regardless of what illness you are facing, let's do the basics: Hydration, Vitamin D, Vitamin C, etc....all the top recommendations are below.
Thankfully, there are lots of smart ways you can boost your immune system and stay healthy. To make it easy, we've compiled a list of the most important items to stock up on.
To be clear, we aren't saying the following recommendations will prevent you from catching the flu or the novel coronavirus.
But there is evidence that when it comes to the flu, (Covid-19 is too new to know what works, but since we're focused on strengthening your immune system, we can assume these tips work on all viral infections), there are a number of things you can do to put you and your loved ones in optimal condition to avoid infection altogether. Even if you do get sick, these methods will make sure you are in the best possible position to fight any infection.
1. Hydration Is Your Salvation
Since most of us (especially athletes) are in a state of chronic mild dehydration, now is the time to be vigilant about your hydration. It's the #1 thing you can do to stay healthy.
Dehydration leads to a ton of health problems and weakens your immune system. In the off-chance you do get sick, staying hydrated is absolutely vital for recovery.
When it comes to staying hydrated, you don't want extra calories or sugar, but you do want a robust number of electrolytes.
My approach is to mix these two different hydration products to supercharge my immune system and cellular health:
SOS Hydration: Developed by a Mayo Clinic physician, Dr. Blanca Lizaolo, as a rapid oral rehydration solution, it's a premium hydration product that is used not only by elite athletes all over the world but also by medical and military establishments. It has only 2 grams of sugar, is rich in electrolytes, and tastes amazing.
QuintEssential: This nutrient-rich, raw marine fluid was developed in the early 19th Century by famed French physiologist Rene Quinton. It's harvested from the depths of plankton-rich ocean blooms deep in the Atlantic Ocean and then cold-sterilized to retain its healing properties. It contains 78 essential minerals and trace elements that support cellular health.
I absolutely love that it's such a rich source of completely natural nutrients that have been used for healing for over a century. As you can imagine it tastes a bit salty if you drink it straight from the packet, but mix it with 32 oz of SOS Hydration and it goes down easy!
Tip: I love this new Camelbak Chute bottle to carry around with me. I mix 2 scoops of SOS Hydration and 1x QuintEssential with 32 oz of water. Drink at least two 32 oz bottles per day and your hydration needs will be covered.
SOS Electrolyte Drink Mix
Citrus / 50 Serving Tub
Quicksilver Scientific Quintessential Hypertonic Elixir
Box of 10
The Feed Camelbak Chute Bottle
2. Supplements Are Your Insurance Policy
Our perspective on supplements when it comes to the flu is that they are an insurance policy. We may or may not need them, and they may only be moderately effective, but in the current state of the world, I want to do everything possible to give myself an advantage, don't you?
This important vitamin Has been shown to help prevent upper respiratory infections especially among people who don't get enough of the vitamin from diet or exposure to sunlight. The evidence for Vitamin D as a flu-fighter is strong. Researchers pooled data from 25 studies that included more than 10,000 participants to come to this conclusion. Vitamin D is especially helpful in the winter months when we are inside and not getting as much sun exposure.
There has been a huge demand on our vitamin supplements over the past few weeks, so inventory is getting very low, but no need to worry, just be sure to place a back-order as more is coming in this week and you will be first to get yours delivered.
Puori D3 Vitamin D
Thorne Vitamin D/K2
1 fl oz
Human N D3.K2 Complex
Loading up on your vitamin C intake right now is one of the smartest things you can do. Studies show taking vitamin C helps prevent contracting upper respiratory infections as well as significantly reducing symptoms. In this study, mega doses of vitamin C resulted in an 85% reduction in symptoms.
It's even more effective at reducing the duration of illness if you're already using it regularly (as in, before catching a cold). This is especially true for older people and athletes.
In China, high dose IV Vitamin C is an active treatment being tried to help those with Coronavirus, although it's too early to tell how effective that treatment is. That said, supplementing with it ahead of getting an infection is definitely the way to go. Having extra on hand for mega-dosing if you do get sick is also wise.
My favorite Vitamin C is Quicksilver Liposomal Vitamin C with RLA. It comes in a pump and you use it as a sublingual that you keep under your tongue for 30 to 60 seconds. Together with RLA it helps support the production of Glutathione, our master antioxidant.
A new version of Vitamin C from Puori was just released as an effervescent drink and they source their Vitamin C from goji berries, rose hip, and acerola berry. As with all things from Puori, they spare no expense on sourcing their ingredients.
Finally, Thorne also has a great Vitamin C Supplement with a high dosage of 1g per capsule.
Quicksilver Vitamin C with RLA (Liposomal)
1.7 fl oz
Puori C3 Vitamin C
20 Tablet Tube
Thorne Ascorbic Acid
Full Coverage Insurance - Thorne Multi-Vitamin Elite
In addition to boosting my Vitamin D and Vitamin C with the supplements I mentioned above, I also add in Thorne's Multi-Vitamin Elite to make sure I'm fully covered. No matter what my diet is that day, or how much extra load I put on my body in training, I can rest assured that I'm covered with all of the vitamins and minerals I need to stay healthy.
Thorne's Multi-Vitamin Elite is formulated for the demands of athletes in mind. It comes as one package with two bottles. A bottle for AM (you take 3 pills in the AM) and a bottle for PM (you take 3 pills in the PM). This makes sure you get the right amount throughout the day, but not so much that you can't absorb it all at once. In addition, the formulation is optimized for what you need first thing in the morning and what you need overnight.
Thorne Multi-Vitamin Elite
Set of AM/PM - 90 Capsules Each
3. If you do get sick...
You may want to consider adding any or all of the following to your daily regimen to help you recover faster. There is moderate to weak evidence of each of these items working, but I know if I get sick, I'm going to throw everything I have available to fight off the infection.
If you're anything like me, you'll want to make sure you have a full arsenal on hand to protect you and your loved ones. I recommend you don't wait, as supplies are getting tricky.
Dubbed the "master detoxifer", it also plays a role in boosting your immune system. I like Quicksilver Glutathione, you can get it as straight Glutathione or as a Glutathione Complex (a bunch of other supporting ingredients is included). Both are great choices. In addition Thorne has a great Glutathione in a Slow Release capsule format.
Quicksilver Glutathione (Liposomal)
Quicksilver Glutathione Complex
Lots of people swear by Zinc when they are sick. That being said, there isn't a ton of scientific data to support this claim. However, there are some. For example in this 2013 analysis of peer-reviewed double-blind studies, people who took a daily dose of least 75 mg of zinc a day had a significant reduction in the duration of their illness. If you are going to take zinc, Thorne's Zinc Picolinate is an oral pill, but our Dr. Kevin Sprouse recommends it as an effervescent version like with Puori's Vitamin C3 that is an effervescent drink that also has Zinc.
Beekeepers Natural's Propolis Spray
If you get a sore throat, you want this Propolis Throat Spray. The active ingredient is Propolis (also known as bee glue), which bees produce and place around the entrance to their hive to keep bacteria out. It's Antimicrobial and Immune Boosting with over 300 vitamins and minerals in the spray.
Propolis has been getting a lot of attention these days and a number of studies have concluded it's an effective antibacterial, antifungal and antioxidant with many applications. Aside from the science, user's of the spray swear by it. It's the go-to remedy for sore throats in my house. It also comes in a Kids Version - Propolis Throat Spray for Kids.
I hope none of our Feed Athletes get sick, and if you do that you recover quickly.
While the chances of infection are low, it's a wise move to stock up and fortify yourself and your family now. Remember the #1 thing you can do (after hand washing!) to kick some viral butt is to stay hydrated and build up your immune system.
Top 5 Products to keep in stock at home:
Vitamin C and Zinc combined in one drink
Vitamin C and Zinc in a effervescent drink. Vitamin C is being used widely in China and South Korea to treat Novel Corona Virus Patients. The added boost of Zinc in a format that will coat your mouth and throat is an additional layer of protection.Learn more
Your Vitamin Insurance Policy
No matter what my diet is that day, or how much extra load I put on my body in training, this is my insurance policy to make sure I'm covered and never operating at a deficit of any one particular vitamin or mineral.Learn more