Super Foods to Boost Your Immune System
If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it's to look after our health, especially our immune system.
Your immune system is your own personal bodyguard. It consists of tissues, cells, organs, and proteins, which help fight against bacteria, viruses or anything that is likely to cause infection or disease.
In order for your immune system to be able to fight against such pathogens, you need to feed your body certain types of foods and supplements.
So, we've taken the liberty of selecting the top super-foods known to give your immune system a boost.
Of course, we had to start with the most obvious one, citrus fruits are high in Vitamin C, which helps build a strong immune system and increases the production of white blood cells, therefore, fights against any infection.
Because our bodies don't store or produce Vitamin C, we need to top up our vitamin C on a daily basis.
Lemon, limes, grapefruit oranges, Clementine's are all great sources of Vitamin C. The fun thing about citrus fruit is that you can really experiment with them in your food as they go well with salads, stews and soups.
RED BELL PEPPERS
If you are not a fan of zesty citrus fruits, then red bell peppers are a great alternative as they too are high in vitamin C. Additionally, they are also a great source of beta carotene, an antioxidant which converts to vitamin A.
As well as boosting your immune system they help keep your skin and eyes healthy too.
To preserve the red bell peppers nutrients, try including them in your stir-fry or roasting them.
There's a valid reason why broccoli is always on the list of super-foods, that's because it's supercharged with minerals and vitamins.
The mini tree is jam-packed with goodness, it contains vitamins A, C and E, and it's crammed with many other antioxidants and fibre, which is why it is considered to be one of the healthiest vegetables you could possibly eat.
To get the most benefit out of your broccoli, it's best to eat it raw. However, if you feel that to be a stretch, you can roast or steam it. Just keep in mind if you do steam it, it should be no more than four minutes so it keeps the nutrients locked in.
Is one of those foods we try to avoid, especially if you have a date, but it is essential for your health. Garlic is the key essence in most recipes and provides a great source of immune-boosting properties. It may help in lowering blood pressure and sustaining healthy arteries.
Garlic has been a common home remedy in a bid to prevent colds and other illnesses.
Another popular home remedy we like to turn to when we get sick. Its antioxidative and anti-inflammatory properties make it a popular choice when treating colds and can also reduce nausea.
Like garlic, you can use it in most recipes. You can also infuse it into your tea or make delicious desserts.
If you're a fan of curry, then you probably recognise the taste of this yellow spice. What you may not know is that turmeric actually has anti-inflammatory properties and been used as a medication for hundreds of years, mainly boosting your immune response.
OILY FISH AND SHELLFISH
Fish like salmon and tuna are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
According to scientific research, omega-3 can help with depression, improve your eye health, promote brain health during pregnancy and early life, reduce the risk of heart disease, aid autoimmune diseases and help prevent cancer.
Now I know you're probably thinking oily fish is understandable but shellfish, really? Well, a variety of shellfish such as crab, oysters and lobsters are packed full of Zinc and contain other vitamins and minerals perfect for boosting your immune system.
When you are sick, the first thing that springs to mind is chicken soup, the soup aids in lowering inflammation. Chicken is rich in vitamin B-6 which is vital for the formation of new and healthy red blood cells.
But if you really want to reap the full benefits of poultry then stock or broth will super boost your immunity. When you boil chicken bones, it releases chondroitin, gelatine and other nutrients that help heal your gut and build your immunity.
SUNFLOWER SEEDS AND ALMONDS
Both are a rich source of vitamin E, which improves your immune function, vitamin E fights free radicals that can damage your cells.
They can be either consumed as a healthy snack or make a great addition to salads and breakfast bowls.
Chocolate lovers rejoice because you don't have to cut out chocolate from your life completely. In fact, dark chocolate is rich in an antioxidant called theobromine which may aid in boosting your immune system.
Just keep in mind that dark chocolate is calorific so, as tempting as it may be, you should consume it in moderation.
Okay, so this isn't a food per se, but we couldn't leave it off the list.
Green tea, as well as black teas, are packed with flavonoids, a type of antioxidant.
What makes green tea stand out is its high levels of epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which is another powerful antioxidant.
There are studies that suggest EGCG have shown to enhance immune function and because green tea is steamed and not fermented, the EGCG is preserved.
Here are other immune-boosting foods that you should consider incorporating into your diet as well:
- Sweet potatoes
Although all the foods mentioned are fantastic in boosting your immunity, most of which you could add to your weekly shop, you should also consider investing in a good immune-boosting supplement.
Our Regeneration is a supplement to help boost your immune system.
Made up of three ingredients it contains organic Irish Sea Moss, rich in minerals and antioxidants including vitamins A, E, F, and K to stimulate healthy digestion. Organic Bladderwack, a common type of seaweed that contains essential nutrients to help maintain a healthy thyroid and lastly, organic Burdock Root, a powerful antioxidant that contains vitamin A and B-complex as well as calcium, iron and manganese.
We often get so caught up with the hustle and bustle of everyday life that we tend to grab the easiest on-the-go food option there is. So investing in a supplement like Regeneration is perfect for exactly those days as it helps you stay on the go while maintaining your health and at only $29.95 for a bottle of 120 capsules.
Eating right, taking your supplements and eliminating bad lifestyle habits, like smoking and drinking should be a priority because your health is important not only for yourself but for the ones that love you too.