By now, many of you have heard of the coronavirus outbreak in China that has spread to other countries, including the United States. Although it can have a fairly mild effect on those it infects, like with the flu virus, dangerous complications can arise, especially in those with compromised immune systems. Whether you are in an area where you may be exposed to coronavirus or not, it’s important to keep our immune systems strong.
As with preventing nearly any illness, the CDC recommends washing your hands frequently and disinfecting surfaces that are likely to become contaminated. However, there are many more steps we can take to strengthen our immune systems and protect ourselves from the coronavirus, and any other disease.
Perhaps one of the most important things we can do is to limit our sugar consumption. Especially in the American culture, we consume so much sugar not only in desserts that most of us frequently indulge in, but also in many of our beverages and even some main dishes. Sugar can have an inflammatory response in our body and weaken our white blood cells (an essential part of the immune system). Though we might do well to limit our sugar intake more overall, it is especially important if you know you are going to be exposed to a bacterial or viral infection. If you still find yourself craving a dessert to end a meal, try substituting fruit or even a little dark chocolate. While both still contain sugar, it is in a more natural form than is usually found in candies or ice cream. Both also contain vitamins and other nutrients that are useful to the immune system.
Another important component of keeping our immune systems strong is making sure we are getting the proper nutrients. Vitamin C is needed for many functions of our body, and we must get it from our diet, as we can no longer produce it ourselves. Unfortunately, as the growing conditions for our food become less and less ideal and our diets include less and less potential sources of Vitamin C, we can easily become deficient in it. Vitamin C aids our immune system by enhancing the actions our white blood cells take against disease-causing pathogens, making them more effective overall. As Vitamin C is an antioxidant, it also protects those cells from oxidative stress and damage, which might otherwise weaken them.
We carry Vitamin C in multiple forms for your convenience. Ascorbic Acid is our cheapest option, however, it is acidic and can cause digestive issues for some people sensitive to acid. Calcium Ascorbate and Sodium Ascorbate is Vitamin C combined with calcium and sodium respectively to make them non-acidic. The Ester-C brand comes in tablets, capsules, and powder. It is calcium ascorbate combined with citrus bioflavonoids to increase the antioxidant capability.
Wishing you all a healthy year!
PC NetwoRx, Inc.
Carr, A.C. and Maggini, S. (2017). Vitamin C and immune function [Abstract]. Nutrients, 9(11). doi: 10.3390/nu9111211. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29099763.
Prevention and treatment. (2020, February 8). CDC. Retrived February 11, 2020 from https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/prevention-treatment.html.
Patterson, S. (2020, January 18). The 9 absolute worst things to do when you have a cold. The Alternative Daily. Retrieved February 11, 2020 from https://www.thealternativedaily.com/9-absolute-worst-things-when-you-have-cold/?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=AD200210.
Roberts, H. (2004, August 17). Vitamin C, Linus Pauling was right all along. A doctor’s opinion. Medical News Today. Retrieved February 11, 2020 from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/12154.php#1.