Well - if you are already taking my ACES recommendation; there are two immediate alternates/additions I would ask that you keep in mind through flu season. The first two are MUST-HAVES; the other ones are just kind of giving you some ideas thereafter...
1. Omega-3 Fatty Acids: they act as immune boosters by increasing the activity of phagocytes, the white blood
cells that eat up bacteria. They have had a lot of success with pulmonary (lung) infections/ailments.
2. AAHC: Active Hexose-Correlated Compound is a mushroom extract supplement that has been tested for its potential role in the immune system, liver health, cancer treatment and as a biological response modifier. Enhances resistance to infection and natural killer cell activity.
Granted, this is a study done in mice...but when looking at it in instances of the flu; I don't think this can be overlooked...
Supplementation with active hexose correlated compound increases the innate immune response of young mice to primary influenza infection.
J Nutrition. 2006;. Department of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA,
In this study, young mice were supplemented with 1 gram AHCC / (kilogram body weight x day) for 1 wk prior to and throughout infection with influenza A (H1N1, PR8). Our data suggest that supplementation boosts natural killer activity, improves survival, and reduces the severity of influenza infection in young mice.
Other Stuff topping off recent research would include...
3. N-acetylcysteine (NAC
). In an Italian study, Researchers in Italy found that seniors taking 600 mg of NAC twice daily developed fewer flu-like symptoms and had influenza-like episodes less frequently. NAC helps boost levels of a disease-fighting antioxidant compounds known as glutathiones.
4. Andrographis. A Chinese medicine herb (Andrographis paniculata) that is known to reduce symptoms of upper respiratory infections and congestion. Can be combined Siberian Ginseng (Eleutherococcus senticosus) which might provide even greater, synergistic benefits. High dosages can have side effects, such as changes in blood pressure.
5. Elderberry extract. Studies show that this extract of Sambucus nigra stimulates the immune system. In a limited study in Israel, researchers found that people taking elderberry extract experienced a significant reduction in symptoms such as fever in just two days. Ninety percent were symptom-free after only three days. See below for more. We've used it very successfully.
6. Oscillococcinum. This top-selling homeopathic remedy for reducing cold and flu symptoms which has been found to reduce the duration of flu and flu-like syndromes.
7. North American Ginseng. North American ginseng has, in one small study, shown to cut the length of colds by one-third while reducing slightly the odds of catching a cold.
8. Zinc lozenges. Zinc is an antioxidant that stimulates the body's resistance to infection. Some research suggests that zinc lozenges reduce the duration of colds.