Feeding your body certain foods may help keep your immune system strong. If you’re looking for ways to prevent winter colds and the flu, your first step should be a visit to your local grocery store. Plan your meals to include these 15 powerful immune system boosters.
1. Citrus fruits
Most people turn to vitamin C after they’ve caught a cold. That’s because it helps build up your immune system. Vitamin C is thought to increase the production of white blood cells. These are key to fighting infections. Popular citrus fruits in South Africa are oranges, grapefruit, naartjies, and clementine.
Vitamin C is not produced nor stored by our bodies and that requires us to take it daily. Almost all citrus fruits are high in vitamin C. With such a variety to choose from, it’s easy to add a squeeze of this vitamin to any meal.
2. Red bell peppers
Red bell peppers are also a good source of vitamin C, actually for gram per gram they have more vitamin C than citrus fruits. Besides boosting your immune system, vitamin C may help maintain healthy skin. Beta carotene helps keep your eyes and skin healthy.
Broccoli is packed with vitamins such as vitamins A, C, and E, as well as many other antioxidants and fibre. Very important to cook broccoli and other vegetables well in minimal water and for short time to help prevent sensitive vitamins such as Vitamin C.
Garlic is found in almost every cuisine in the world. It adds a little zing to food and it’s a must-have for your health. Early civilizations recognized its value in fighting infections. Garlic’s immune-boosting properties seem to come from a heavy concentration of sulfur-containing compounds, such as allicin.
Ginger is another ingredient many turn to after getting sick. Ginger may help decrease inflammation, which can help reduce a sore throat and other inflammatory illnesses. Ginger may also help decrease nausea.
Spinach is rich in vitamin C and it’s packed with numerous antioxidants and beta carotene, which may increase the infection-fighting ability of our immune systems. Similar to broccoli, spinach is healthiest when it’s cooked as little as possible so that it retains its nutrients.
6. Yogurt and Mass
Yoghurts that have live bacteria (probiotics) added are good for us. Look out for “live and active cultures” printed on the label. These cultures may stimulate your immune system to help fight diseases. Try to get plain yogurts rather than the kinds that are preflavored and loaded with sugar. You can sweeten plain yogurt yourself with healthy fruits and a drizzle of honey instead. Mass is naturally has these good bacteria similar to the ones added to yoghurt
Yours in Health