While young we were told that an apple a day keeps the doctor away. But in today’s evolving environment with viruses and germs getting even stronger, and new and rare diseases surfacing every now and then, it seems like it will take more than an apple to keep the doctor away, because with diseases becoming more severe it becomes indispensable to strengthen your immune system so as to prevent these ailments. As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure. Considering that we have listed some foods in this article that have the power to strengthen immune system, keep illnesses at bay and help you stay fit and healthy throughout.
Honey is a very healthy and nutritious food that one should definitely include in their diet. Honey is used in many medicines because of its anti-bacterial and anti-oxidant properties. Honey contains a lot of vital nutrients but the one that boosts our immune system is hydrogen peroxide. This important compound shields our body against invaders and fights bacterial infections and illnesses.
- Fruits from the Citrus Family
These include oranges, limes, lemons, grapes and tangerines. Citrus foods are rich in vitamin C and it is proven by scientific studies that vitamin C significantly boosts immune system and helps it run 100%. It increases the production of white blood cells, also known as leukocytes. These are the cells of the immune system and help body combat infectious diseases and harmful foreign invaders that might enter the system. This is why you must have seen a lot of people turning to vitamin C supplements when they catch flu or cold. Green tea is also a good source of vitamin C and helps in enhancing the immune system.
However body doesn’t produce vitamin C naturally or stores it, therefore a daily intake of this vital nutrient is essential.
Garlic has been used in the traditional medicine for ages to treat infectious diseases. Studies have also attested Garlic’s immunity boosting properties. It contains an important, heavily concentrated sulfur containing compound the Allicin, which according to science helps body produce more leukocytes that work as guard against ailments and illnesses. Garlic has also been proven to help relieve high blood pressure as well as prevent the hardening of arteries, therefore improving heart health as well. The good thing about this immune booster is that you need not take it especially, as it is part of almost every cuisine in the world.
Famous for its anti-inflammatory properties, Ginger also helps enhance and strengthen immune system. Gingerol is what gives ginger its distinctive heat which plays part in fighting off foreign invaders that might cause diseases otherwise. Ginger helps in preventing flu and cold, it helps improve digestion and soothe heart burn. It also helps to remedy chronic pain.
- Bone Broth
Must have seen your elders using bone broth whenever they or someone else gets ill. Well there is more to bone broth than just enjoying the warm soup. Bone broth is rich in numerous health supporting nutrients and that is why it is said that “bone broth will even bring the dead back to life”. Rich in vitamins and mineral bone broth offers many health promoting benefits. The essential nutrients in the bone broth improve our gut health which naturally enhances our immune system and wards off various illnesses and ailments.
Eat as many broccoli as you can to stay fit and healthy throughout the winters. This amazing vegetable is packed with the most important nutrients and vitamins that boost immunity. Broccoli is a rich source of vitamin A, C and E. Broccoli is also famous for its antioxidant properties. So if you are adding Broccoli to your list of foods this winter then it is very likely that you’ll survive the winters without getting sick at all.
- Yogurt with Live Cultures
Eating yogurt everyday can prove quite beneficial for health. Yogurt is not only a source of vitamin D, but it also contains Probiotics or the good gut bacteria. These Probiotics promote health by boosting your immune system and combating diseases. Vitamin D is also known for enhancing your body’s immune system.
- Green Tea
The healthiest drink in the world is green tea. Famous for aiding in weight loss, there is more to green tea than burning fat and losing weight. Green tea contains a powerful antioxidant called EGCG, or epigallocatechin gallate that flushes damaging oxidizing agents out of your body. Green tea also contains an important amino acid called L-theanine that stimulates the production of platelets and leukocytes to form a shield against potential disease causing invaders.
- Foods Rich in Iron
Iron is essential as it maintains optimal hemoglobin levels in our bodies. Hemoglobin helps in the transportation of oxygen to the cells so they can perform their functions properly without any interruption, which eventually improves our immunity.
Foods rich in iron include poultry, red meat, green vegetables and seafood.
Papaya is also packed with vitamin C and boosts immune system by invigorating the production of white blood cells that are body’s natural defense against diseases and ailments. Studies have reported that consuming papaya significantly increases platelet count, which contributes in warding off infections and flu.
Fish is loaded with an essential nutrient, the Omega 3 fatty acids. Numerous studies have revealed that Omega 3 fatty acids enhance the functioning of immune cells, where DHA (a compound found in the fish oil) stimulates the activity of white blood cells.
Therefore, including fish in your diet can help you boost your immune system and prevent many diseases this winter.
Beetroot is also classified as one of the super foods, considering its lavish health benefits. Beetroot is loaded with iron, zinc, manganese, magnesium, various amino acids and vitamin A, B1, B3, B9 and C. Beetroot is also famous for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that enable it to boost our immune system. Eat it raw or consume its fresh juice, this humble vegetable will strengthen your immunity and guard you against recurrent infections.
So if you are looking for natural ways to boost your immune system so as to survive the coming winter without falling ill, you must consider adding these immunity booster foods in your everyday diet. These nutritious foods would not only help you stay away from cold and flu but it will also help you maintain good health for the rest of your lives.