The immune system is a critical mechanism meant to protect the body against disease-causing organisms like bacteria and viruses. Like any machine, the body needs proper maintenance for optimal functioning and warding off diseases. As such, there are some simple things that can strengthen your immune system, with food topping the list.
However, you need to be cautious about your food quality, as some will weaken your immune system, especially for the elderly, who must receive very particular nutrients.
Below is an in-depth look at some of the most popular immune-boosting foods.
Spinach has a range of health benefits for your body. For instance, they are good sources of vitamin C which is crucial in tissue repair. Additionally, they also contain antioxidants which are crucial in enhancing the immune system’s disease prevention capacity.
Ensure you do not overcook the spinach so you can preserve the most nutrients.
Ginger is an antioxidant that helps to reduce inflammation and maintain your immune system in a good working state. It also helps improve immunological response as it has potent antiviral and antibacterial properties, making it a beneficial component of your meal.
Oily fish are good sources of omega 3 fatty acids, which lower the chance of developing rheumatoid arthritis (RA). This chronic inflammatory illness develops when the immune system erroneously targets healthy body parts.
Some of the most popular fish types rich in these fatty acids include pilchards, tuna, and salmon.
Kefir is a drink available in most supermarkets and large shops. It is a fermented drink that introduces good bacteria into the body. It strengthens the immune system by assisting with the following:
- The introduced bacteria prompt the body to produce antibodies that help fight other bacterial infections.
- It acts as an antioxidant.
- It reduces inflammation.
Turmeric consists of curcumin, an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory substance that is crucial in the body’s disease prevention process. Turmeric has broad uses, including as a spice, but most North Americans use it for medicinal purposes.
Shellfish contain zinc, an essential mineral in immune cells production. Furthermore, zinc has anti-inflammatory properties and reduces the risk and severity of most illnesses due to its antioxidant nature.
However, ensure the zinc intake is in moderation for your safety and well-being. This is because an excess of it impairs the immune system’s functioning.
Sunflower seeds are antioxidants containing vitamin E, a crucial component in disease prevention. The vitamin helps the body by fighting off free radicals, which have become common in the modern world due to industrial development. Exposure to these radicals puts an individual at risk of contracting chronic illnesses like cancer.
Chicken meat is an excellent source of vitamin B-6, which is involved in various chemical processes that take place in the body. In addition, stock or broth from boiling chicken bones has some beneficial nutrients. For instance, gelatin and chondroitin help repair the gut and strengthen the immune system.
Chicken meat also ensures that the body produces new and healthy red blood cells at a normal rate.
Broccoli has vitamin C and a powerful antioxidant known as sulforaphane. This makes it an excellent alternative for boosting the immune system.
Sweet potatoes get their color from beta carotene, a type of antioxidant which is also rich in vitamin A. It improves the skin’s health and protects it from the impacts of UV radiation.