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Natural Awakenings Dallas -Fort Worth Metroplex Edition


Antiviral Immune Boosting Protocols

by John Roland

Different immune boosting protocols and supplements are being touted as the best “cure” for viruses. Here is a quick list of supplements for immune boosting.

Zinc is a common go-to supplement in cold/flu season due to its ability to boost the immune system and fight viruses. Studies show that zinc can block the replication and growth of viruses by inhibiting RND dependent RNA polymerase. Taking extra zinc might seem like a good idea, but the extra zinc does not always get absorbed into the cells. To significantly boost the active zinc stores in the body, combine it with a compound that can act as a carrier, called a zinc ionophore. Zinc by itself is a non-fat-soluble mineral that does not move easily through the lipid (fat) cell membrane that surrounds every cell of our body. Special transport systems such as zinc ionophores and zinc-binding proteins can be used to carry it across the cell membrane.

Quercetin, a plant flavonoid found in capers and green tea, is the most common zinc ionophore supplement. It has been shown to help carry zinc across cell membranes and also helps the cell membrane block a virus from entering the cell. Once quercetin has been used, it can be “re-activated” by an antioxidant like vitamin C to further help transport zinc into the cells (note that hydroxychloroquine, a prescription drug being researched in antiviral protocols, also acts as a zinc ionophore).

Vitamin C is more well-known as an immune-boosting supplement and has multiple benefits that have been studied and documented. One of its key antioxidative actions is decreasing harmful reactive oxygen species that can cause lung damage. Higher doses of vitamin C can be administered via IV as long as a doctor feels this is a safe option.

Vitamin D is important to help modulate immune response. It plays critical roles in helping macrophages identify pathogens and quickly respond to infection. Some estimates say that 40 to 50 percent of the U.S. population is deficient in vitamin D. It should be taken in the form of D3 along with vitamin K2 for optimal results. Both vitamins D and K are fat-soluble, and can be given as sublingual sprays.

Melatonin is traditionally used as a sleep aid and has immune-boosting properties at higher doses. This dosing strategy has been shown to increase white blood cell production and buffer the immune response to prevent acute inflammation. This special buffering effect is especially important to help prevent lung damage in the more severe cases of infection.

Oregano oil has demonstrated significant antiviral properties. It can modulate immune response and directly damage the viral cell wall. It is a “hot” oil and should be used with caution. It can be applied to the soles of the feet as a topical application. Every body is unique and an individual’s immune response is influenced by myriad factors, including genetics, environment, exposure rate and baseline state of health. It doesn’t work well to try to use a single protocol as a one-size-fits-all approach Look for a practitioner that is able to assess and develop a protocol geared to meet individual needs.

Dr. John Roland is a functional medicine and emergency room doctor in Rockwall providing COVID-19 recommendations. For more information, call 972-658-0928 or visit

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