11 Foods That Superboost Your Immune System
While masks, face shields, social distancing, and staying at home are all important measures, there are always unavoidable instances where we are in risk of exposure to the coronavirus. No matter how safe we try to be, it is always better to be both safe AND healthy to give our body a fighting chance against the virus.
With health being today's #1 priority, it is particularly important to boost our immune system by getting the right nutrients to charge it. This way, our body can act as a last line of defence if it is ever exposed to the virus. Even after this pandemic, consuming healthy foods such as these immune system superboosters will always be beneficial to our body in fighting against other diseases and living a longer and happier life.
Here are the 11 different foods that have proven to be most effective in boosting the immune system:
1. Red Bell Peppers
Though oranges are usually what comes in first thought when talking about Vitamin C, red bell peppers actually contain almost thrice as much Vitamin C as an orange if counted ounce per ounce.
It's also rich in Vitamin A, antioxidants, and beta carotine, which are essential for maintaining healthy eyes and skin. To get these incredible benefits, try adding a couple slices into your salad, pasta, or stir-frys!
The human body actually doesn't create its own Vitamin C, which makes it necessary to include plenty of it in your daily diet.
Oranges are one of the highest sources of Vitamin C which increases the production of white blood cells, boosting the immune system. Every variety of orange contains more than your daily recommended amount, so its a real quick way to fully charge your body's immune system.
Broccoli is no doubt one of the healthiest vegetables out there. It contains many fibers and various antioxidants, switching on several enzymes in some of the immune system's cells.
It's also charged with Vitamins A, C, E, and an array of B vitamins, it's really a super-packed veggie that you can add to any meal. To retain most of its nutrients, it's recommended to cook it as little as possible (boiling is better), or even consume it completely uncooked.
Salmon is well-known as a 'brain-food' due to its numerous heart benefits, but it actually also has great effects on your immune system.
As a fatty fish, salmon has rich levels of omega-3 fatty acids helping control inflammation, which can disrupt and weaken the immune system. It's very important to regularly consume inflammation-fighting foods, especially when you're feeling a little under the weather.
Just like oranges, lemons are an excellent source of Vitamin C which boosts your immune system.
Though they're often consumed in lower quantities due to its sour taste, you can easily squeeze some into your recipes, make lemonade, or drink a glass of lemon-infused water throughout the day.
Turmeric, having anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and antibacterial properties is a spice that can easily be added to your diet for extra protection against colds, flus, and other viruses.
It has high levels of Curcumin, which shines for its antioxidant effects. Curcumin also shows promise as an immune booster and antiviral.
Another vegetable that takes the spotlight for its immune system benefits - spinach. Besides being rich in Vitamins C and E, it also contains carotenoids and flavonoids which help prevent the common cold.
Just like broccoli, you can retain a majority of the spinach's nutrients by cooking it as little as possible. However, light cooking is still recommended as it helps it absorb Vitamin A.
Some studies show that organic spinach is superior to regular (tagalog) spinach, as it contains more nutrients such as iron, magnesium, and of course, Vitamin C.
Ginger has been used for the longest time as a traditional, or even magical remedy to several infections and diseases. These effects are due to its anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory properties, which can reduce a sore throat, help with nausea, and many more.
Besides these, it also contains Gingerol, which is what makes it an amazing immune system booster.
Garlic is known for being used as an antiseptic, antibacterial, and anti-fungal agent. It contains high amounts of allicin, giving it its immune-boosting properties.
Garlic may help the body fight off and destroy various viruses and microorganisms, and is a common home remedy for colds and other illnesses.
10. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are extremely rich in beta carotine, an antioxidant which is a source of Vitamin A. It helps keep skin healthy and even protects against UV rays.
It also contains a healthy amount of fiber, and is a cholesterol-free, fat-free, and low calorie food, making it great for anyone on a strict diet trying to get in those additional nutrients.
Just like salmon, it contains high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, which helps avoid the disruption and weakening of the immune system.
Besides this, it's also rich in protein, zinc, and selenium (also found in other seafoods), which are essential in maintaining a healthy-functioning immune system.
As a highly versatile fish, you can eat a healthy and delicious serving of tuna raw (sashimi), grilled, or seared, among others.
Which of these should I choose?
Please note that this is not a checklist of food to consume everyday! As you've read, each of the foods have its own benefits, some of which may be similar or different to each other. It's unnecessary to start buying each one of these items on your next palengke shopping session. While more is better - sustainability is the key. Just choose which ones you and your family are comfortable with adding to your regular diet!
For your convenience, we made sure to offer all of these immune system superboosters for next-day delivery to Metro Manila. Once you've chosen which items you'll buy for your family, just click Shop Now to access our bountiful catalog and have it delivered hassle-free!
We hope this guide has helped you by providing healthy choices to boost your family's immune system. Till next time, stay safe and healthy!