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All the ways that Vitamin C supports a healthy immune system

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Right now, amid all of the COVID-19 news and ‘social distancing’, parents are looking at ways at keeping their family as healthy as possible.

Dietician, Hayley Blieden says that what we put inside our body at this crazy time could have a big impact on the way that our bodies fight any attacks on our immune system. And a big player in that menu is vitamin C.

Scientifically proven to reduce the duration and severity of cold and flu symptoms, Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant. We look at all the ways it can support your family’s health below …

Hayley Blieden

Hayley Blieden shares her tips for keeping your family healthy amid COVID-19.

Though Vitamin C might not keep you from catching a cold or virus in the first place, there is some evidence that vitamin C may decrease the length of cold symptoms by as much as one to one-and-a-half days for some people.

“A recent study led by the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition concluded that supplementation with a probiotic/vitamin C combination may be beneficial in the prevention and management of upper respiratory tract infection,” says Hayley.

Vitamin C has also been shown to enhance iron absorption.

“It captures non-heme iron and stores it in a form that’s more easily absorbed by your body,” says Hayley. “In one study, taking 100mg of vitamin C with a meal increased iron absorption by 67 percent.”

Because your body cannot make vitamin C, you need to get it from your diet or a good quality wholefood supplement.

Vitamin C and immunity

Because your body cannot make vitamin C, you need to get it from your diet or a good quality wholefood supplement.

The foods that give you a vitamin C boost

Hayley tells Bounty Parents that there a many delicious foods that will give you a hit of vitamin C. “Foods like kakadu plum, citrus fruits like finger lime and desert lime, cantaloupe, kiwi fruit, berries, capsicum, camu camu, acerola cherry and dark leafy vegetables are a great source of vitamin C to add to your family’s diet.”

Vitamin C supplements

Opting for wholefood supplements over synthetic supplements is the best way to add vitamin C to your diet. Wholefood supplements are also a safer option for the whole family.

“The protective health benefits of vitamin C, prebiotics and probiotics are well established in their own rights, but recent evidence suggests that combining the three can supercharge immunity,” says Hayley.

The Australian Superfood Co’s Vitamin C Booster is a 100 percent wholefood blend, expertly combining vitamin C with pre and probiotics to deliver a scientifically-proven daily dose of goodness.

How much vitamin C do you need?

Recommended dietary intake:

  • Children 1-8 years: 35mg/day
  • Kids: 9-18years 40mg/day
  • Adults: 45mg/day

“The above recommendations are developed to meet nutrient requirements for healthy, active people. Immune suppressed individuals will have increased requirements,” says Hayley. “Larger doses have been linked to enhanced immunity.”

Staying healthy amid COVID-19

In addition to having enough vitamin C, Dietician Hayley Blieden says families can do a few simple things to give themselves the best chance of staying healthy and fighting infections.

1. Eat the rainbow. A diet high in fruits and vegetables is the best boost to the body. Also avoid processed foods
2. Exercise regularly. Even if you are feeling sick, slow movement is better than none at all
3. Stay hydrated. Ensuring you are drinking adequate amounts of water enables your body to stay hydrated and can aid in flushing out toxins
4. Get adequate sleep. This is the time your body reboots
5. Meditate. Enabling your mind to slow down, reduces the stress on your nervous system and enables your body to function at its optimum
6. Wash your hands. Coughing in to your shoulder or elbow, sneezing in to a tissue and regularly washing your hands for a minimum of 20 seconds is necessary to avoiding germs

This article first appeared in Bounty and can be accessed here.

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“The protective health benefits of vitamin C, prebiotics and probiotics are well established in their own rights, but recent evidence suggests that combining the three can supercharge immunity,”