With the global pandemic, taking care of our overall health has become more important than ever. While vaccines definitely help curb the spread of the virus, there is also one thing that can effectively help to keep us healthy: eating immune-boosting foods.
Now, if you are wondering which healthy foods are this, fret no more. In this article, we will dive into the best immune-boosting foods that you should incorporate in your diet. Make sure to read further!
Red bell pepper
Growing up, you may think that citrus fruits have the most vitamin C content. But that is just wrong, because red bell peppers hold the title for being the vegetable that contains the most vitamin C. In fact, one red bell pepper contains three times more vitamin C than a Florida orange.
Meaning, it has great levels of vitamin C to boost your immune system and maintain healthy skin. Likewise, it also contains beta carotene, a form of vitamin A that maintains eye and skin health.
A nutritional powerhouse, broccoli is filled with vitamins and minerals essential to block out diseases. It contains vitamins A, C, and E, as well as high fiber and antioxidant content, making it one of the healthiest vegetables you can eat.
Here is a tip: to keep its nutrients intact, cook it as little as possible. Try steaming the broccoli to maintain its nutrient levels.
This superfood contains anthocyanin, a type of flavonoid that contains superb antioxidant levels that help maintain a healthy immune system. Additionally, it is proven by science that flavonoids help boost the respiratory tract’s immune defense system.
People who eat foods rich in flavonoids, like blueberries, are said to have lesser risk of getting common cold and upper respiratory tract infection, compared to those who do no incorporate it on their diet.
We have been talking about fruits and vegetables, now why is chocolate included in the list, you may wonder? In case you didn’t know it yet, dark chocolates are healthy—so healthy it contains an antioxidant referred to as theobromine, which helps bolster the immune system by protecting the body from free radicals, which are toxins that can cause a wide array of diseases.
Most people love including this yellow spice in their cooking, but did you know that turmeric boasts an esteemed reputation in traditional and alternative medicines? Incorporating turmeric in your diet is proven to boost your immune response, making your body more resistant to diseases. Thanks to its curcumin content, turmeric is supercharged with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties!
Ginger is also a wonderful food. It may help decrease inflammation, which can help curb inflammatory illnesses and sore throat. It can also help curb nausea too.
Ginger is also used to decrease cholesterol and chronic pain in the body.
Not only is spinach rich in vitamin C (containing 34% of the recommended daily intake), but it also contains beta carotene and antioxidants too, which greatly aids our fight against foreign invaders in the body.
Like broccoli, spinach is best eaten when steamed so that it retains its rich nutritional level. But the downside is light cooking allows the release of oxalic acid, which is an antinutrient. You can scour the internet for the best spinach recipes to best help retain its nutritional value.
Yogurts contain “live and active cultures” that provide good bacteria in the gut, hence boosting immune response. When buying yogurt in a supermarket, cop the ones that do not contain flavors because they are loaded with sugar content. If you prefer your yogurt sweetened, you can do so by adding fruits such as blueberries instead.
Aside from that, yogurt is also a great source of vitamin D, so try to choose brands that are fortified with vitamin D, which help regulate the immune system and boost bone health.
This nutrient-packed, low-calorie seafood contains high amounts of zinc, a mineral that is not produced or stored by the body, therefore we must intake it. Shellfish include shrimp, mussels, oysters, and crab. These foods can contribute to the fortification of your immune system.
Vitamins C and E are what you will get from eating almonds, both of which are key nutrients to keep a strong, healthy immune system. The easiest way to incorporate almonds in your daily diet is skipping your usual fast food-laden afternoons. Replace your usual burgers and fries with almonds, and you will find yourself healthier than ever.
Are you a tea person? Then good for you! Green tea is supercharged with flavonoids, which is a great component that fights free radicals in the body.
It is also rich in epigallocatechin gallate, or EGCG, which is believed to help bolster the immune system. Likewise, it also contains high levels of L-theanine, an amino acid that helps in the production of germ-fighting properties of T cells.