As we age, our bodies get weaker and are more susceptible to various viruses and diseases. We have to take extra care of ourselves, especially in times like this. It is paramount that we remain vigilant by staying home, practicing good personal hygiene and only travelling out if necessary (remember to practice social distancing). As you work from home during this pressing time, ensure that you consume food rich in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals which promotes a healthier and stronger immune system.
Below are 10 best food for a healthier and stronger immune system that you should incorporate into your diet, as much as possible.
1. Citrus Fruits
Rich in vitamin C, this water-soluble vitamin is known to help build a stronger immune system. As your body is unable to develop vitamin C on its own, it is important to consume citrus food such as oranges, strawberries and grapes. These citrus fruits also acts as an antioxidant, where they help in fighting free radicals in the body that prevents heart diseases and other illnesses.
Known as a superfood, broccoli contains a high amount of vitamins such as vitamin A, C and E. It is rich in antioxidant and fiber. When cooking broccoli, ensure it’s well intact and cook it as minimally as possible to retain all the nutrients. Steaming is the best cooking method to ensure all the nutrients are retained.
Garlic can be found in majority of Asian cooking, which not only adds depth of flavor to your dishes, but also helps regulate a healthy immune system. It contains a compound called alliin, which contains sulfur that gives off the distinctive garlic smell and taste. Go ahead and add an additional spoonful of garlic, it’s good for your health!
Besides being anti-bacterial, ginger is filled with immune-boosting benefits that can also aid in preventing sore throat and inflammatory illnesses. Boil a cup of tea, add a slice ginger and drink it whenever possible, as it helps in improving digestion and increases absorption of food.
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It is important to take note of the type of yogurt you buy when grocery shopping. Always buy Greek yogurt instead of flavoured yogurts as they are laden with sugar and preservatives. Greek yogurt is rich in vitamin D, C and probiotics that promotes a healthy immune and digestive system.
Rich in beta carotene, antioxidants and vitamin C, spinach is packed with vitamins and minerals that regulates a strong immune system. Similar to broccoli, this leafy vegetable is best consumed over light cooking to retain the optimum nutritive value.
7. Green Tea
Green tea contains a high level of epigallocatechin gallate or EGCG, which is a powerful antioxidant. EGCG boosts one’s immune system and also helps reduce cancer risks. Besides green tea, chamomile and black tea are also great for your immune system.
8. Red Bell Pepper
The perfect ingredient for pasta and pizzas, red bell pepper are just as rich in vitamin C as any citrus fruits. It is also rich in beta carotene that promotes a healthy eyesight and keep your skin radiant.
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Turmeric is a bright yellow spice used in many curry dishes and is a common spice in our households, where it has nutritive value that you are possibly aren’t aware of. This delicious spice helps to boost your immune system and should be incorporated in your dishes, especially during flu season.
Last but not least, water is strongly recommended to build a strong and healthy immune system, as it not only removes toxins from your body, but also ensures all your organs are functioning properly. Add a wedge of lemon in your drink, because lemon is a citrus fruit that is rich in vitamin C and also adds a nice flavour to your drink.
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