Recently we have been hearing a lot about maintaining good health due to the spread of COVID-19. Everyone is telling us to stay indoors in order to protect ourselves but is there anyone telling you about ways to boost up your immune system in order to win the battle against not only corona which is now considered as airborne disease but also from disease that you may encounter later in your life. As the person grows older the immune system may not work to its maximum potential because of various reasons such as decline in production of immune cells, due to which communication amongst the immune cells decreases and time taken by body to fight certain disease is prolonged. Also, people with lower immunity and chronic health are most likely to suffer.
Immunity is nothing but ability of our body to fight against disease. Different types of cells are produced by our lymphatic system and they act as immunity warriors. However, it is important for us to take care of our body by boosting our immune system. Immunity boosters speed up body’s healing process. Consumption of immunity boosters can replenish a lot of essential nutrients, like vitamins, minerals, etc. in the body.
When we talk about immunity boosters, first thing comes to our mind is medicines. People spend a lot of money on supplements just to stay healthy. But very few people know that immunity boosters are not only medicines but also the food we eat. Many food items are present in our fridge, which can naturally enhance our immunity.
Without further delay let me list out natural immunity boosters.
It is one of the healthiest vegetables and act as a powerhouse to our immune system. It is an excellent source of vitamin A, C and E also rich in beta-carotene, potassium, magnesium, zinc, and iron. These vitamins and minerals help our immune system to work at its best. Regular consumption of steamed broccoli also reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease. Carotenoids present in broccoli contributes to improve eye health and lowers the risk of age-related eye disorder such as cataract and macular degeneration.
Citrus fruits like berries, orange, lemon, kiwi, limes, grapefruit etc. are great source of vitamin C and minerals like potassium, magnesium, copper, phosphorous etc. They are also rich in flavonoids, carotenoids and essential oils etc. All these contribute to the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of citrus fruits. Vitamin C works with antibodies and promotes wound healing. Vitamin C act as an antioxidant which helps in prevention of cell damage done by free radicals produced in our body. Consumption of citrus fruits reduces the risk of different types of cancer and neuro degenerative disease like Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer.
Popular ingredient used in cooking as it has strong smell and delicious taste. But it is traditionally known for its medicinal properties and health benefits. It is low in calories and rich in vitamin C, vitamin B6 and manganese. Reduces the risk of common cold and flu, high blood pressure, and reduces high blood cholesterol levels. It has some antioxidant properties which results in reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and heart disease.
Ginger is used in various forms of traditional medicines. It is used to help digestion, reduces nausea and common cold and flu. The key component of ginger is gingerol, known for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It can be used to prevent various types of nausea. Nausea after surgery, chemotherapy related nausea, morning sickness etc. Use of ginger reduces risk of osteoarthritis which leads to joint pain and stiffness. Antioxidants present in ginger quench free radicals and helps our body to fight against arthritis, cancer, neurodegenerative disorders, and many other conditions. It also helps in treatment of sore throat by reducing inflammation.
Rich in many vitamins and minerals such as magnesium, calcium, iron, folic acid, soluble fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin C. Health benefits of spinach includes diabetes management, prevents cancer and asthma. It is recommended for people with high blood pressure and improves eye health. Large quantity of vitamin A present in spinach helps in production of oil in skin pores and hair follicles. Therefore, improves growth of hairs and reduce risk of acne. It provides our body necessary nutrients required for cell division and DNA repair.
It is rich in proteins, fats and minerals. Shellfish is a great source of lean protein. Omega -3 present in shellfish lowers the risk of heart disease and help in weight loss by giving us feeling of fullness. B-12 and omega 3 also helps in brain development in children. Zinc is mainly linked to healthy immune system, as it is necessary mineral for normal growth and wound healing, appetite and normal sperm count in males.
Active compound present in turmeric that caught every one’s attention is curcumin. It has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-cancerous properties. It helps in boosting our immunity and reduces virus replication as it has antiviral properties. It helps to fight against rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease. Anti-oxidative property of turmeric helps in preventing cells from free radical damage. In some to studies it is seen that it reduces the spread of cancer and causes death of cancerous cells. Use of turmeric cleanses respiratory tract and reduces the risk of cough, cold and flu.
Almonds are highly nutritious as they are rich in healthy fats, many vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Almonds are rich in fiber, vitamin E, vitamin B2, copper and phosphorous. Almonds are great source of antioxidants and protect cells from oxidative damage which leads to aging and disease. It helps to reduce high blood sugar and can control blood pressure.
They are rich in healthy fat, vitamin E, B-6, minerals such as manganese, copper, zinc etc. It works as antioxidants due to the presence of vitamin E. Best way to incorporate sunflower seeds in your diet is use of sunflower oil which is extracted from its seeds. Sunflower seeds are rich in essential fatty acids, which has number of benefits including formation of collagen and elastin, gives smoothness to skin tissues. It helps in reducing free radical damage, slows down the aging process of cells, low blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar etc.
Red bell pepper
These are rich source of beta carotene. Red bell peppers and rich in vitamin C. Red bell pepper is low in calories and rich in antioxidants. Presence of carotenoids in red bell pepper improves eye health. It also cut the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts. It also protects retina from oxidative damage. These are good source of iron and vitamin C which helps in prevention of anemia.
One can also help immune system by maintaining healthy lifestyle, as our thoughts, feelings, moods and beliefs influence level of health and course of disease. These day people are less likely to eat well or exercise regularly, habits that enhance immunity. High stress provokes individual to adapt bad habits such as smoking and alcoholism. Optimistic thinking, getting involved in work and building good relationship with others can increase our stress resistance. Adequate sleep and relaxation are also very important for healthy immune system.