Im­mune boost­ers AND SUP­PLE­MENTS

Be care­ful of the type of sup­ple­ments you take

Move! - - VICTORY OVER HIV - By Cle­ment Fana Ntuli

IT IS a fact that HIV de­stroys your im­mune sys­tem. An­tiretro­vi­ral (ARVs) drugs sup­press HIV and al­low your im­mune sys­tem to re­gain strength. In-be­tween this, the body gets weak and re­quires a lot of ef­fort from you to strengthen it. This has opened a gap for many people to use im­mune boost­ers and sup­ple­ments to as­sist the im­mune sys­tem.

VA­RI­ETY OF SUP­PLE­MENTS

There are many im­mune boost­ers and sup­ple­ments that people use and they range from nu­tri­tional to herbal sup­ple­ments.

The com­mon im­mune boost­ers are those with aloe, red yeast, lenti­nan, whey pro­tein and co-en­zyme Q-10, among oth­ers.

As sup­ple­ments and boost­ers are a ma­jor busi­ness, many com­pa­nies ad­ver­tise and mar­ket them in such a way you will want them im­me­di­ately. But you may soon find out that they don’t work as they are por­trayed. Nu­tri­ents found in sup­ple­ments and im­mune boost­ers are not as good as get­ting them nat­u­rally. They may say they are nat­u­ral and work with all med­i­ca­tion, but it's not en­tirely true.

TOX­INS IN YOUR BODY

Most sup­ple­ments and im­mune boost­ers are made from nu­tri­ents that you can get from eat­ing a bal­anced diet. How­ever, due to man­u­fac­tur­ing and preser­va­tion, such sup­ple­ments do not con­tain nu­tri­ents like fresh fruit, veg­eta­bles and food we pre­pare our­selves.

The preser­va­tion of these nu­tri­ents re­quires the ad­di­tion of preser­va­tives, which may cause tox­ins in your body. There­fore, if you use them, you may also need to detox­ify, which is the process of re­mov­ing tox­ins from your body.

When ARVs were re­searched and ap­proved, the process was not done on people us­ing sup­ple­ments or im­mune boost­ers. Sim­i­larly, im­mune boost­ers were not en­tirely re­searched for people on ARVs. This means that if you are us­ing them, you might be com­pli­cat­ing the ef­fec­tive­ness of your med­i­ca­tion. Some sup­ple­ments may even neu­tralise your ARVs.

EN­ERGY DRINKS

An­other grow­ing trend these days is en­ergy drinks. You may feel weak as a re­sult of the virus and re­sort to en­ergy drinks. It is a known fact that they in­crease your sugar lev­els, but fre­quent use may lead to ex­ces­sive de­hy­dra­tion and high blood pres­sure. You need to avoid en­ergy drinks. Rather opt for nat­u­ral nu­tri­ents that can pro­vide you with en­ergy with­out en­dan­ger­ing your health.

CHECK WITH YOUR DOC­TOR

If you want to boost your im­mune sys­tem or sup­ple­ment your ARVs, con­sult your doc­tor be­fore you take sup­ple­ments and im­mune boost­ers.

Ir­re­spec­tive of whether people rec­om­mend cer­tain sup­ple­ments, do not take them with­out con­sult­ing your doc­tor, who will be able to help you should com­pli­ca­tions arise.

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