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Cold Season

Follow This Easy Supplementing Routine to Stay Healthy During Cold and Flu Season


As cold and flu season collides with the threat of Covid-19, enhancing our defenses against viral invaders is more important than ever. Fortunately, we can boost immunity in as little as two weeks — for pennies a day! In more good news, there are easy ways to make the supplements that protect against infections work even better.

Morning: Choose time-release vitamin C.

Vitamin C boosts the production of virus-fighting immune cells to protect against severe respiratory symptoms by 85 percent. In a JAMA study, 2,000 mg. daily lowered pneumonia risk by 95 percent. But the body can only absorb about 250 mg. of C at a time. That’s why Steven Gundry, MD, advises taking a 1,000-mg. time-release supplement in the morning and evening, which will deliver C slowly and steadily, ensuring optimal absorption.

Noon: Pair zinc with this easy-to-find supplement.

Zinc keeps viruses from multiplying, cutting Covid complications by up to 44 percent, say NYU scientists. Fred Pescatore, MD, recommends taking 50 mg. of zinc plus 500 mg. daily of quercetin, a compound found in apples and onions. Turkish scientists are testing quercetin’s ability to prevent and treat COVID, while Spanish research shows quercetin doubles the ability of zinc to enter cells, where it can do its antiviral work.

Try: Life Extension Optimized Quercetin (Buy on, $15)

Dinnertime: Down some vitamin D.

Folks with ample stores of white blood cell–boosting vitamin D are 44 percent less likely to test positive for COVID, a study in JAMA Network Open found. And other studies show healthy D levels reduce the risk of severe COVID complications sevenfold. Taking 2,000 to 4,000 IU of D-3 daily shores up stores, and you’ll optimize levels if you pair it with a higher-fat meal at dinner. Tufts University scientists say fat boosts D absorption by 32 percent.

Following this simple routine will make your immune system more prepared to breeze through cold and flu season. It’s all about protecting our bodies as best we can!

A version of this article originally appeared in our print magazine, Woman’s World.

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