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It’s common for people to load up on vitamin C or zinc when they get the sniffles because … well, that’s what Mom said to do to combat a cold. And we’re certainly not calling your mother a filthy liar. All we’re saying is that while vitamins can help immune system health, nothing will work miracles if you’re malnourished or severely dehydrated.
The truth is, taking in more vitamin C and zinc can be a part of the solution if they’re preventing deficiencies, but mega-dosing them won’t make your immune system impenetrable to pathogens.
Cleaning your hands, getting a flu shot, keeping stress under control, and an active lifestyle that features a balanced diet are three optimal disease-fighting strategies. Will any of these methods guarantee you won’t get a cold, pneumonia, or even the MERS, SARS, or coronavirus? Uh, no. Outside of living in a hazmat suit, all you can do to prevent those awful illnesses is to avoid contact with those who are ill or consider adopting a hazmat suit as your business casual attire.
But making a few tweaks to your diet and taking the right supplements can help put you and your body in a better position to recover —after you see a doctor, of course — should you fall ill. Again, these products should be considered as ways to bridge the gap between deficiencies. They’re not cure-alls.
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