Sarah Stacey's Health & Wellbeing Notes: Boost Your Immunity
As the new autumn term gets going, we could swear those gangs of viruses are planning their campaign for laying us low with colds and flu. So it’s time to take action in the shape of simple daily supplements to support our immune systems to ward off those pesky invaders.
This is particularly important if you are under stress, working in confined spaces like offices, have young children at school, are prone to lack of sleep or may not eat well for different reasons (older people or those recovering from illness often just don't fancy food). Even if you opt for flu jabs, it’s still wise to add another layer of defenses.
Pharmacist Shabir Daya, our trusted natural health guru for decades now, suggests the following supplements. And if you have a moment or two, do sit down with a cuppa and read Shabir’s Winter SOS Survival Guide, which gives you lots more information and advice.
For children under 12 years old: Sambucol for Kids, £8.84 for 120ml. Developed by leading virologist Dr Madeleine Mumcuoglu, this is based on elderberry extract and specially formulated to look after your child’s immune system. Elderberry displays anti-viral properties in general and may also help with non-flu viruses, such as those linked to chronic fatigue syndrome (Epstein Barr). It also contains a broad range of nutrients.
For over 12 year olds and adults: Daily Immunity by VH, £26 for 60 capsules (a month’s supply). This comprehensive formula with herbs, vitamins and probiotics was developed to prime the immune system to help it protect you from all types of infections. You can also take it to help shorten the duration of an existing infection.
For the older generation: Mega Probiotic ND by VH, ££19.50 for 60 capsules. This is an absolute daily must as the years pass – also for anyone with gut problems, such as Sarah developed after working in India some 25 years ago. ‘Mega P’, as it’s known to its many fans, contains eight probiotic strains – that’s the good bacteria which often go AWOL as we get older, causing mayhem and making us more vulnerable to all sorts of illness as well as uncomfy digestive symptoms. Probiotics support the immune system by helping the body to break down food and utilise the nutrients. Probiotics also release protein compounds, which detect disease-causing pathogens.