15 Foods That Boost the Immune System
1. Citrus Fruit
Most people turn to vitamin C after a cold. This is because it helps build up your immune system. Vitamin C is believed to increase the production of white blood cells. These are the key to fighting infection.
Popular citrus fruits include:
your body does not produce or store it, so you need daily vitamin C for continued health. Almost all citrus fruits are high in vitamin C, with such a variety to choose from, it is easy to squeeze this vitamin into any meal.
2. Red Bell Peppers
If you think citrus fruits have the highest vitamin C of any fruit or vegetable, think again. Ounce for ounce, the red bell peppers contain twice as much vitamin C as citrus. They are also a rich source of beta carotene. In addition to boosting your immune system, vitamin C can help maintain healthy skin. Beta carotene helps to keep your eyes and skin healthy.
Broccoli is supercharged with vitamins and minerals. Packed with vitamins A, C, and E, as well as many other antioxidants and fiber, broccoli is one of the healthiest vegetables you can have on your table. The key to keeping your power intact is to cook it as little as possible – or better yet, not at all.
Garlic is found in almost every dish in the world. It adds a little zing to food and is essential for your health. Early civilizations recognized its value in fighting infection. According to the National Center for Complimentary and Integrative HealthTrusted Source, garlic can help lower blood pressure and harden the arteries. Garlic’s immune-enhancing properties are heavily derived from sulfur-containing compounds such as allicin.
Ginger is another ingredient after getting sick. Ginger can help reduce inflammation, which can help reduce sore throat and other inflammatory diseases. Ginger can also help reduce nausea.
While it is used in many dessert desserts, ginger packs some heat in the form of gingerol, a relative of capsaicin. According to recent animal research, ginger may help reduce chronic pain and may have cholesterol-lowering properties.
Spinach made our list not only because it is rich in vitamin C. It is also packed with many antioxidants and beta carotene, which can enhance our immune system’s ability to fight infection. Similar to broccoli, spinach is healthier as long as it is cooked sparingly so that it retains its nutrients. However, light cooking increases its vitamin A and allows it to release other nutrients from oxalic acid.
Look at yogurts with “living and active cultures” printed on the label, like the Greek yogurt. These cultures can stimulate your immune system in fighting diseases. Try to get plain yogurt instead of those types that are already repulsive and loaded with sugar. You can sweeten plain yogurt with healthy fruits and a drop of honey instead.
Yogurt can also be a great source of vitamin D, so try to choose fortified brands with vitamin D. Vitamin D helps regulate the immune system and is thought to promote natural defenses against the diseases of our body.
When it comes to preventing and fighting colds, vitamin E supersedes vitamin C. However, vitamin E is the key to a healthy immune system. It is a fat soluble vitamin, which means that the presence of fat must be absorbed properly. Nuts, such as almonds, are packed with vitamins and also contain healthy fats. A half-cup serving, which is about 46 whole, shelled almonds, provides about 100 percent of the recommended daily intake of vitamin E.
You may know turmeric as an important ingredient in many curries. But this bright yellow, bitter spice has also been used for years as an anti-inflammatory in the treatment of both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. In addition, researchtraced sources suggest that high concentrations of curcumin, which gives turmeric its distinctive color, may help reduce exercise-induced muscle damage.
10. Green Tea
Both green and black tea are packed with flavonoids, a type of antioxidant. Where green tea is actually in the level of excelocatechin gallate, or EGCG, is another powerful antioxidant. EGCG has been shown to enhance immune function. The fermentation process causes a lot of destruction of black tea EGCG. On the other hand, green tea is steamed and not fermented, so EGCG is preserved.
Green tea is also a good source of the amino acid L-theanine. L-theanine can aid in the production of germ-fighting compounds in your T-cells.
Papaya is another fruit filled with vitamin C. You can get 224 percent of the daily recommended amount of vitamin C in a single papaya. Papaya also contains a digestive enzyme called papain which has anti-inflammatory effects.
Papaya contains good amounts of potassium, B vitamins and folate, which are beneficial for your overall health.
Like papaya, kiwis are naturally loaded with a ton of essential nutrients, including folate, potassium, vitamin K, and vitamin C. Vitamin C increases white blood cells to fight infection, while other nutrients in the kiwi function properly to the rest of your body.
When you are sick, chicken soup is just a good meal with a placebo effect. It helps in improving the symptoms of cold and also helps to prevent you from getting sick at first. Poultry, best such as chicken and turkey, are high in vitamin B6. Approximately 3 ounces of light turkey or chicken meat contain 40 to 50 percent of your daily recommended amount of B6.
Vitamin B6 is an important player in many chemical reactions that occur in the body. It is also important for the formation of new and healthy red blood cells. Stocks or broth made by boiling chicken bones contain gelatin, chondroitin, and other nutrients that are helpful for gut irritation and immunity.
14. Sunflower Seeds
Sunflower seeds are full of nutrients, including phosphorus, magnesium, and vitamin B6. They are incredibly high in vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant.
the Vitamin E is important in regulating and maintaining immune system function. and Other foods with high amounts of vitamin E include avocados and dark leafy greens.
Shellfish is not one that jumps to the mind for many people trying to boost their immune system, but some types of shellfish are full of zinc.
Many other vitamins and minerals are not taken care of in zinc, but our bodies need it so that our immune cells can function.
Shellfish with high amounts of zinc include:
Keep in mind that you do not want to exceed the daily recommended amount of zinc in your diet. For adult males, it is 11 mg (mg), and for females, it is 8 mg. Too much zinc can actually inhibit immune system function.