Cold and flu season has arrived and after the past year, nearly everyone is focused on doing all that they can to stay as healthy as possible. Did you know that there are foods that you can eat that will help to boost your immune system, and may prevent you from getting sick? Let’s talk about some foods that you can eat to boost your immune system and keep you healthy and strong.
Foods that Boost Your Immune System
Broccoli is a powerhouse of vitamins and minerals including vitamins C, E, and A, it also has a healthy dose of iron and antioxidants. All of these vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants help to keep your immune system in tip-top shape. It doesn’t hurt that broccoli is delicious too and can be added to a variety of dishes, or even eaten raw with your favorite dipping sauce.
Garlic has been used medicinally to boost the immune system and cure common ailments for centuries. Garlic is antiviral, antibacterial, and anti-fungal which makes it great for reducing inflammation and fighting off infections. Add garlic to your favorite dishes to give your immune system a healthy boost, or if you don’t like the flavor, garlic supplements are just as effective.
Papaya, Kiwi, and Citrus Fruits
Papayas, kiwis, and citrus fruits all contain vitamin C which is very effective in boosting the immune system and encouraging the body to produce more white blood cells which can help to prevent infection. Papayas have more than the daily recommended allowance of vitamin c in a single medium fruit. Papayas and kiwi contain a healthy dose of potassium, magnesium, and folate all of which are important to your overall health. Vitamin C has been found to reduce the duration of an illness if you weren’t getting as much as you needed to prevent getting sick in the first place.
Shellfish probably doesn’t come to mind when you are thinking of foods that boost your immune system but it should if you aren’t allergic of course. Shellfish like oysters, mussels, lobster, and crab contain high levels of zinc which is very important when it comes to your immune system. Don’t eat too much though, as excessive zinc levels can actually diminish your body’s immune system response.
Tuna, Salmon, Egg yolks, and Yogurt
Tuna, salmon, egg yolks, and yogurt contain a healthy dose of vitamin D which is very important when it comes to boosting your immune system and keeping it functioning properly. You can also get the vitamin D that your body requires through supplements, of a few minutes of sunshine each day. Unfortunately in a lot of areas during the cold and flu season, there isn’t a lot of sunlight. Make sure to add some of these foods or supplements to your diet if you haven’t been getting much sunshine lately.
Blueberries are considered a superfood because they are packed so full of vitamins and antioxidants. Blueberries have vitamin C, vitamin A, manganese, and fiber. They also contain flavonoids which are a type of antioxidant that is very important for repairing cellular damage and boosting the immune system.
Give Your Immune System A Boost!
These foods will help you to boost your immune system, but make sure that you are also staying hydrated (preferably with water), exercising, and getting enough sleep at night. All of these things play an important role in how your immune system functions. What are your favorite immune-boosting foods?