Foods to Boost Your Immune System
Our immune system works by recognising injury or potential infection in the body. It triggers an immune response to eradicate the problem and return the body to normal. You can tell that your body is fighting infection by the symptoms of the condition your body is fighting. By strengthening your immune system, you want to make sure that it is balanced in its response to infection to help protect your health.
Different food types and lifestyle factors can boost your immune system. Here are a few that you should consider to include in your daily intake
Many people remember Vitamin C when they have flu or cold. However, it can also help build your immunity against other types of illnesses. Health experts believe that Vitamin C helps increase the number of white blood cells in the body, thereby helping deal with an infection. Some of the popular citrus fruits that provide the vitamin include limes, lemon, oranges, tangerines, grapefruit and clementine. The recommended daily intake is 75mg for women and 90 mg for men.
Broccoli is packed with minerals and vitamins. It has vitamins E, A and C. As well, it is packed with antioxidants and fibre. This makes it a superfood that you can enjoy on your table. For you to get all the nutrients lightly steam the broccoli.
Red Bell Pepper
Red bell pepper has the highest amount of vitamin C that a vegetable or fruit can have. It has three times the amount of Vitamin C as a traditional orange. It also has a high content of beta-carotene. Therefore, in addition to propping your immunity, red bell pepper helps maintain healthy skin and eyes thanks to the Vitamin A.
Garlic has been used to fight infection over the centuries. The reason is that it has several immune-boosting properties that come from the sulphur-containing compounds. Some evidence shows that it can slow down the hardening of arteries and helps in lowering blood pressure. It also adds some unique taste to any food.
Spinach is rich in different nutrients that include beta-carotene, Vitamin C and antioxidants. All of these are vital in the immune system’s ability to fight infection. Just like the broccoli, consider cooking your spinach as little as possible so that it retains all your nutrients. You need to cook it a little so that it is able to absorb Vitamin A and break down the oxalic acid for the release of other nutrients.
Plain yoghurts that are not flavoured with sugar and other additives contain live cultures that help stimulate the immune system to fight infections. They are also rich in Vitamin D, especially the fortified ones. To improve the taste of the plain yoghurt, consider adding some fresh fruit juice or honey, all of which have health benefits in addition to a great taste.
Consider a variety of foods to make your eating both nutritious and appetizing. Pay attention to recommended serving sizes so that you get the right amounts for each nutrient. Ideally, enjoy these healthy foods regularly, not just when you feel sick or run down.