My Cold Weather “Medicine” Cabinet

It’s only been chilly for about a week, but already people are pouring into Rebecca’s with runny noses, coughs, aches and pains.  Since my daughter started pre-school in September, she’s been sick 4 times and I’ve been sick 2 (those pesky kid germs).  I’m really grateful for a number of supplements, both to use preventively, and to shorten the duration and uncomfortable effects of the varied illnesses we are catching.  I feel like some years I don’t get sick at all and some (like this year) I just have to ride the sick roller coaster.

So, here’s a peek into my personal immune supporting arsenal:

My daily fall/winter time supplements (in addition to my regular routine of multivitamin, Cal/Mag, and Fish Oil (which is also great for the dry skin that accompanies cold weather):

Garden of Life Daily Immune Support with a plethora of organic mushrooms with clinically proven immune supportive benefits, Vitamin C, Olive Leaf, Zinc & 2,000 IU Vitamin D2.

Rebecca’s Brand Vitamin D3 2,000 IU.  In addition to supporting positive mood and bone health, there is lots of research indicating the anti-viral activity of Vitamin D3 as well as linking low Vitamin D3 blood levels to a variety of chronic diseases.  If you feel like reading some of the science, click on this link from  the Journal of Clinical Virology:

NAC (N-Acetyl-Cysteine) 1,000 mg.  I started using these sulfurous smelling (not related to Sulfa based medications) tablets in my pregnancy 3 years ago.  It is one of the few supplements (in addition to Colloidal Silver) with clinical studies in pregnant women.  It showed a reduction in recurrent miscarriage (an issue for me at the time), as well as powerful immune support (applicable to everyone, not just pregnant women).  It helps shorten the duration of the flu and bronchitis as well as acting as a great antioxidant liver supporter.  Live Strong has many studies summarized on their website:

Daily Supplements for my 2 year old:

Nature’s Way Multi-Vitamin Gummies with 26 Fruits & Veggies for my picky eater.

Yummi Bears Sugar Free Vitamin D 1,000 IU Gummies for the reasons I listed above.

Renew Life’s Kids Probiotic chewable with 3 billion CFU Probiotics.  Clinical studies showed DRAMATIC reduction in coughs and runny noses, along with a shorter illness in kids.  Check this study out:

My As Needed Immune Supplements (depending on symptoms):

Sinus Irrigation with a Neti Pot, distilled water and a saline/bicarbonate packet.  This really would be ideal to do daily, but as my mornings are very hectic, I haven’t made the time to incorporate it into my morning routine.

Nature’s Way Umcka Coldcare.  This South African plant comes in many different forms so everyone can find their preferred way of taking it (syrup, tincture, lozenge, tea).  I personally like the Menthol Soothing Syrup because it cools a sore throat and I even feel it in my chest.  I take it at the very first sign of a cold (or if my daughter has a cold—a 2 year old has no germ boundaries) and it definitely shortens the duration of the cold and reduces sinus and bronchial congestion.

Nature’s Way Sambucus Syrup is a proven anti-viral and helps with sore throat and reducing fever.

Garden of Life Immune Balance has a proprietaryblend of Andrographis extract in addition to similar ingredients found in GOL’s Daily Immune.  Andrographis has anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties.  It is for short term use, unless treating a chronic issue like Lyme’s Disease.  I’ve found that it will usually quickly knock out an illness that is progressing into something that wants to knock me into bed for a few days.

Dr. Nenninger Triple Flu Defense (annual formula changes—right now 2012-2013 Flu Season).  This homeopathic liquid can be used once a week for prevention or 3 times a day at the onset of flu symptoms (or if someone close to you has the flu).

Clear Sinus and Ear capsules is a homeopathic and Chinese Herbal combination that I turn to for a decongestant, especially since I’m prone to congestion in my estuation tubes.

Boiron Chestal Cough Syrup for dry OR productive cough.  Herb’s Etc. Respiratonic for extra bronchial support.

Herb’s Etc. Phytocillin when I just can’t shake an illness (sometimes you just have to suffer through) for lingering colds and flu.

As Needed Immune Supplements for my 2 year old (depending on symptoms):

Nutrition Now Elderberry Gummies (much easier than getting her to take a syrup) for the anti-viral/sore throat benefits.

HOMEOLAB Cough & Cold Daytime or Nighttime Formulas really tackle the multi-dimensional coughs that little kids seem to get.

Nature’s Way Children’s Umcka Syrup (she loves this one & will ask for it by name when feeling yucky).

As always, I, or any of my staff, are here to help you with finding your own immune supportive supplements!

Brandon Davis, M.S.Ed. 

Rebecca’s Natural Food Health & Beauty Manager