Making sure you keep your immune system strong can help you avoid getting sick, or get you back to your old self faster. In many ways, what you put in, is what you get out. So putting disease fighting powerhouses into your body, can keep you feeling healthier, and fighting off all the germs and infections rampant during this time of year. Let’s take a look at some great food to keep you feeling great even during cold and flu season:
Citrus Fruits: Vitamin C isn’t the only thing these fruits have to offer. While grapefruits, oranges, and tangerines are teeming with this great immune enhancing vitamin – Vitamin C is not their only benefit. These fruits are also packed with flavonoids, natural chemical compounds that stimulate the immune system.
Oats and barley: we don’t usually look at our morning meal as immune boosting – but these grains found in our warm cereal contain beta-glucan. This fiber has both antimicrobial and antioxidant properties, helping to boost immunity and promote healing.
Cinnamon: this versatile spice also happens to be a known antiviral, antifungal and antibacterial powerhouse. That means cinnamon not only strengthens the immune system but fights off all the critters that cause illness. It is also one of the easiest things to add to your diet, whether it be in your coffee, oatmeal, or after dinner dessert.
Garlic: contain compounds that increase the activity of immune-system cells. The active infection and bacteria fighting ingredient in garlic is allicin, which can fend off bacteria like H. pylori.
Yogurt: probiotics found in yogurt, are good bacteria that keep the gut and intestines healthy. Research has found that yogurt, owing to these probiotics, stimulated the production of white blood cells, fending off colds.
Zinc: This mineral works to help to strengthen the immune system and in fact, immune cells like white blood cells NEED zinc to function. The most well-known place to get zinc is unquestionably oysters, which are rich in the mineral. However, it’s not the ONLY place. Meats like calf’s liver, beef and lamb, are also abundant in zinc.
Nuts: Nuts have a healthy helping of Vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant. Besides vitamin E to help boost the immune system. And they have riboflavin and niacin, B vitamins that may help you bounce back from the effects of stress.