Keeping your immune system healthy is very important, especially during the monsoon season. What you eat can majorly influence your immune health. Certain foods may actually decrease your chances of getting sick, while others can help you recover more quickly if you do get ill. Here’s a quick list.
Fruits like oranges and lemons are high in vitamin C, a well-known immunity booster. Vitamin C is recognised for its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It also helps maintain the integrity of your skin, which acts as a protective barrier against infection. In addition, vitamin C acts as an antioxidant, helping protect your immune cells against harmful compounds formed in response to viral or bacterial infections.
Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that live in your gut and help stimulate your immune system. This may reduce the likelihood and severity of your symptoms and help you recover faster when you do fall ill. Great sources of probiotics include naturally fermented pickles, yoghurt and buttermilk.
Vitamin E is key to a healthy immune system. It’s a fat-soluble vitamin, meaning it requires the presence of fat to be absorbed properly. Nuts, such as almonds, are packed with the vitamin and also have healthy fats.
Ginger is rich in gingerol, a bioactive substance thought to help lower the risk of infections. It has antimicrobial properties that may inhibit the growth of several types of bacteria.
Garlic also contains active compounds that may help reduce your risk of infection. For instance, allicin, the main active compound in garlic, improves your immune cells’ ability to fight off colds and the flu. Garlic also has antimicrobial and antiviral properties that may help it fight bacterial and viral infections.
Spinach is packed with numerous antioxidants and beta carotene, which may increase the infection-fighting ability of our immune systems.
Papaya is another fruit loaded with vitamin C. You can find 224 percent of the daily recommended amount of vitamin C in a single papaya. Papayas also have a digestive enzyme called papain that has anti-inflammatory effects. Papayas have decent amounts of potassium, B vitamins, and folate, all of which are beneficial to your overall health.
Sunflower seeds are full of nutrients, including phosphorous, magnesium, and vitamin B-6. They’re also high in vitamin E, with 82 percent of the daily recommended amount in just a quarter-cup serving. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant. It’s important in regulating and maintaining immune system function. Other foods with high amounts of vitamin E include avocados and dark leafy greens.
Honey can help soothe your throat and tone down a nasty cough if you’re already sick. Honey may also help treat indigestion and acid reflux. Instead of spooning table sugar into your coffee, replace it with honey.
Feeding your body certain foods may help keep your immune system strong. For a well-planned diet, perfectly catered to your body’s needs, consult our Nutrition department.