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Immume system booster

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
With the winter coming up soon, I want to take something that will boost my immune system to aviod the usually stuffiness/cough that usually plagues me all season. Anything you guys can recommend? Maybe a multivitamin each day? I don't know... Is GQ Doctor still luking? Dude, what do you think?
post #2 of 21
A few years ago, I had a cough and sore throat that would not go away. I completely lost my voice. My doctor said, "My wife is a singer. This is what she does to keep her voice. Drink as much water as possible. More than you think you can stand. Gargele, constantly, with salt water. Use a saline nose spray (Ayr, Ocean). I will have you talking and singing in two days." It worked. And, I have found that doing this on a regular basis keeps the colds away. The body is mostly salt water. A lack of salt water causes the immune system to break down. A very common sense solution.
post #3 of 21
Eat plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables - too many people hold the view that vitamins can only be obtained in pill form. Avoid picking your nose with bare fingers - use a tissue (everyone picks their nose). If you are likely to be exposed to many people with 'flu, then get a 'flu jab. Gargling salt water works to prevent (i.e. if there is already a viral infection) or treat a bacterial infection of the pharynx - if the infection is in the larynx, it simply won't work because when you gargle, fluid doesn't enter the larynx (BTW salt works by sucking water out of bacterial cells). Saline nasal sprays or washes are best to be avoided - they can actually increase congestion.
post #4 of 21
echanaciea - can be found on any vitamin aisle.
post #5 of 21
Keep warm outdoors. I don't know why, but this seems to help me. My completely unscientific, but I think, reasonable, explanation is that our immune systems are weakest during the adjustment to the dramatic change in the ambient temperature. A way to lessen the chance of catching a bacterial or viral infection would be to have your body at the same "ambient" temperature as much as possible. My rule is that I should be sweating if I tried to run a couple of blocks in my streetclothes, same as I would be in the spring or fall. Also, keep exercising.
post #6 of 21
One thing that you can take, especially if you work out, is the amino acid L-glutamine; with the most economical way to buy it being in powder form (600 grams for around $35).  It is the most abundant amino acid in the body, and the first one to be taxed when the body is under high stress (recovering from a work out, having a cold, etc).  Taking it before you get a cold can lessen the severity and duration of it, and L-glutamine does not need to be cycled or anything and can be taken year round (5-10 grams a day is the usual recommendation). So check any good sports supplement store in your area and they should have it.  It's tasteless and should be taken on an empty stomach.  It's also good to take 400-800 IU's of natural vitamin E and maybe an extra gram or two of vitamin C daily as these help to fend off what they call "free radicals" which form in the body when under high stress (especially from workouts).  This is in addition to any you might be getting in a multivitamin, which you should take year round regardless (I take Optimum Nutrition's Opti-Men... $20 for a 2 month supply).  Hope that helps. Kevin
post #7 of 21
Speaking from the shoes of one getting over a nasty bout with the flu (not to mention I came down with it on the night of my birthday..), I just have to second what GQ Lawyer suggested. Echinacea works incredibly well. I've taken it during these dreary months since childhood and have a bottle in my medicine drawer right now. Usually, taking it daily for about a month and a half or so should prevent most stuffiness/coughing. I must add that I don't think it tastes particularly great, so I mix the echinacea with a glass of Sprite.
post #8 of 21
Thread Starter 
NS: Do you use the liquid verson? How long will a 1 oz. bottle last for? Dosn't it stay warm all year down in NO?
post #9 of 21
L-glutamine... it's tasteless and should be taken on an empty stomach.  
I wish my L-Glutamine was flavorless. The stuff I have has a terrible flavor that forces me to mix it with fruit juice to stand it. In water it just tastes bad. Also - I quit taking the L-Glutamine because it kept giving me really vibrant and bizarre dreams which left me exhausted during the day. I have the same response when I take ZMA which is also recommended for building muscle. Although the dreams aren't as vivid, it causes me to toss and turn so much that I am completely exhausted the next day. Anyone else have these problems? Bradford
post #10 of 21
Bradford, That's odd that it affected your dreams.  I have never heard of that happening in my life.  What brand were you taking that tasted bad?  I have taken AST Sports Science's micronized L-glutamine that has the consistency of flour so it mixes easily, and I have also tried Optimum Nutrition's powder brand.  The best way I have found to take the powder is to scoop it into your mouth  with a spoon and then take some water to wash it down; just don't inhale the powder and choke.  Also, take it first thing in the morning when you wake up and after your workout (I workout in the evening) and that should give it enough time to not interrupt your dream/sleep patterns.  Let me know if that makes a difference. Kevin
post #11 of 21
Mike C., I don't wish to mislead you, I am not a doctor. I am merely someone who takes a great interest in medicine. Ginseng is one of two "immune booster" supplements that can be taken daily . However, taking ginseng has no effect on those who are healthy, it effects those who are recovering from a chronic illness. If that is your case, consult your physician. If you do not have diabetes or high blood pressure, ginseng may be right for you. Keep in mind, however, that ginseng taken in large doses may cause adverse side effects, including, but not limited to high blood pressure, diarrhea, insomnia, and dizziness. The other "immune booster" is L-Glutamine. L-Glutamine is an amino acid supplement your body stores in the bloodstream and converts into glucose as needed. It can be beneficial for one's immune system. However, I highly recommend you talk to your physician before taking any supplements, even if they are over-the-counter. L-Glutamine has other positive effects e.g. it strengthens intestines, controls cravings for sugar. As others have pointed out, drinking more liquids is beneficial. Water helps loosen phlegm and soothe an irritated throat. Perhaps if you could describe your symptoms in greater detail, I may suggest other, more specific treatments. Cura Ut Valeas, Ari
post #12 of 21
The L-Glutamine I have is from a company called "Human Dynamic Technologies." I tried it again last night and it still gave me weird dreams   It tastes ok when you drink it down, but it has a strange aftertaste. I'm currently taking echinacea because my baby son and my wife both have a cold and I'm trying to avoid getting it. Bradford
post #13 of 21
11/6/03 OK - Didn't work. I now have the cold I was trying to avoid. Bradford
post #14 of 21
Bradford, I would consider switching brands. I have never heard of that company myself, and it could be possible that it has some impurities that could affect the taste (just a guess); all the stuff I have tried was pretty easily palatable. Also, try taking it in the morning instead of at night and that might help your dream problem. Kevin
post #15 of 21
Why not try `glyco-nutrients' and natural foods that are high in Beta Carotine, Chlorophyl, selenium, zinc, iron, copper, b vitamins, vitamin E and vitamin C. Don't forget to take acidopilus. There is no excuse for a cold. Keep your immune system strong and you want get sick: it's that simple. Don't forget folks: eating the diet l suggested will give you healthy balances of all the amino acids in full abundance. Don't make it difficult [and like science (with amino acid this and amino acid that]); just follow the diet l suggested and your health will take care of itself. Don't worry, l have done all the amino acid research: sesame sprouts, mung beans, alfalfa sprouts, sunflower greens and wheat grass juice cover the amino acid/proteins problems with high distiction. Protein theory is difficult (just like B12): it took me years to understand; don't worry, the diet is designed to over come every possible dietary weekness. I CHALLENGE ANYONE TO FIND A WEEKNESS WITH MY DIET. No-one has so far. lf you give your body the material it needs, it will create a strongy health body beyond your wildest dreams. l promise. l have done it for me and other people, it is truely amazing.
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