Spring is a common time of the year for illness – the sun tells fibs and decides that raining all over your bare-toe sandals is exactly what you need before lunch. Illnesses spread a lot easier in spring as we come out of our winter caves and spend more time outside and around each other.
Not only this, but spring is the special season when hay fever grabs us by the sinuses and shows us a terrible time, so there’s a lot of prep to be done to avoid spending those spring evenings exhausted, sniffing, and miserable.
Here are our pick of the top vitamins and supplements to help pull you through the spring minefield and keep you feeling your absolute best- spring style.
Vitamin C is a great source of antioxidants, which means it’ll be on your side when sun damage becomes more of a risk. These antioxidants help to protect the body from free-radical damage- which doesn’t just include sun damage and burn, but also pollution damage now we’re likely to be spending more time outside.
As if that wasn’t great enough, vitamin C is also an antihistamine, so if spring equates to swollen eyes, a runny nose, and uncontrollable sneezing, dosing up on vitamin C alongside your usual antihistamines might help you to keep the phlegm at bay.
Vitamin C foods: Citrus fruits, bell peppers, strawberries, tomatoes, cruciferous veggies.
Look out for our Tomato, Barlotti Bean, and Basil soup for a super vitamin C hit.
Like vitamin C, vitamin E is also an awesome sun-protecting antioxidant- except vitamin E has wearable protective benefits. Chuck on a vitamin E moisturising cream under your SPF and you may notice an increase in sun protection. Almost vitamin C’s twin, vitamin E is also a great ally to have in the fight against hay fever.
Vitamin E foods: Sunflower seeds, almonds, peanut butter, greens, red pepper.
Our Almond Butter, Raspberry Chia Jam, and Rye Bread breakfast is the meal for you if you’re after some great vitamin E.
We all know how unpredictable British weather can be, and this is even more pertinent in the spring. Vitamin D is a vitamin we rely on getting from the sun, so supplementing with it can help to ensure you’re receiving enough of it- especially after a deficient winter. It helps to facilitate the normal running of our immune system, so is important when the coughs and colds are getting passed around a bit more. Those with fairer skin who may want to limit sunlight exposure, or those who are unable to get out in the sun as much may also benefit from vitamin D supplementation.
Vitamin D foods: Fatty fish, egg yolks, cheese, fortified foods- such as cereals, juices, and milks.
Keep your eyes peeled for our Smoked Mackerel Thai Salad for a great dose of vitamin D
Seasonal illnesses can take a back foot if you’re dosed up on vitamin B6. Vitamin B6 helps to strengthen your immune system so you can start off your spring with your best foot forward (and without a runny nose). It can also help to elevate your mood and boost your energy so those long days in the sun never have to end.
Vitamin B6 foods: Fish, fortified foods, poultry, sweet potatoes, chickpeas, avocados, bananas, dark leafy greens.
Look no further than our Sesame Salmon with Crushed Sweet Potato for your daily hit of vitamin B6.
Another great one for allergy sufferers alike is magnesium. Magnesium helps to open up your airways and reduce mucous blockages for when you can only mouth breathe (the worst). It also helps to control and lower your body’s response to mild allergens, helping to keep rashes, swelling, and itching at bay. If you are experiencing a severe reaction to an allergen, however, we would not suggest vitamin B6 as an appropriate remedy and suggest calling 999.
Magnesium foods: Whole grains, dark leafy greens, legumes, nuts, dark chocolate.
Try our Kale, Quinoa & Roasted Beetroot with Feta lunch for a lovely load of magnesium.
With the oncoming antihistamine shortage throwing many of us into a hay fever-induced full-blown panic (arms flailing in the air, distant screams and sneezes), you may be after an alternative that works a bit harder than your multivitamin pill.
Thankfully, Probiotics are beginning to show some significant results in reducing hay fever symptoms like nasal congestion and throat itchiness. Studies have shown that taking probiotics leading up to and during the hay fever season is the best way to take the supplements. Hay fever and allergies are caused by the immune system overreacting to pollen and allergens. With 80% of our immune cells residing in our gut it makes perfect sense that by keeping the gut happy and healthy, which probiotics predominantly do, our hay fever symptoms may be reduced.
Bio-Kult 14 strain live bacteria formula
With around 25% of the UK population being affected by hay fever, Bio-Kult, the leading multi-strain live bacteria supplement brand, recommends utilising the gut-loving power of probiotics to help relieve symptoms and keep those sniffles at bay. Bio-Kult’s Advanced Multi-Strain Formulation is recommended in the lead up to and over the hay fever season to best prepare your gut for that pesky pollen response and help you to feel great inside and out this summer.
For hay fever benefits, they suggest their Original multi-strain supplement, but their range of other products can be utilised to help a number of your bodily qualms- from helping with urinary tract infections and thrush, to brightening and energising your brain function. Find the best probiotic supplement for you now.
We hope we’ve given you a great range of potential supportive spring supplements to help make your spring the best it can be. Pair them with a healthy diet, such as those offered here at Balance Box, and you’ll be on the way to great health going into summer and beyond. Find the perfect Balance Box plan for you here.