Modern life continues to be a 24/7 (or)deal.  Our bodies and minds are increasingly under more and more pressure.  Too much stress, not enough sleep and eating the wrong foods can all add up to our immune systems becoming compromised.  The human body really is an amazing thing and its immune system is remarkable too.  However, it needs looking after like any other part of us.  Here then are 10 immune system boosting foods that you really should be eating on a daily basis.

Immune Boosting Food #1. Garlic

We start off with every vampire’s nightmare – garlic.  Not only is garlic incredibly tasty and versatile, it is also fantastic news for your immune system.  Garlic contains a compound called alliin which when chewed / broken down, converts to something called allicin.  Allicin is then quick to break down into a range of sulphur-containing compounds (which is what gives garlic its distinctive smell).  Those broken-down compounds give the body’s white blood cells a boost, key to an effective immune system. [1] And it keeps Dracula at bay too!

Immune Boosting Food #2. Broccoli

Long regarded as the vegetable to overlook, especially by kids around the world, broccoli has really come into its own in recent years, courtesy of its many health benefits, including for the immune system.  That’s because broccoli contains the fancy sounding compound 3,3′-diindolylmethane.  Aside from being a supreme tongue-twister, 3,3′-diindolylmethane has been shown to increase levels of cytokines in the blood – proteins that help fortify the immune system. [2]

Immune Boosting Food #3. Flax Seed / Oil

Flax has been consumed by humans for thousands of years – so it must be doing something right!  It was actually one of the first crops to be cultivated by humans.  Health-wise, flax contains a super-power like no other food, and that’s it lignan content.  No other food comes close!  Lignans are highly effective at tackling oxidization in the body – the cause of serious health conditions like cardio-vascular disease and cancer. [3] Stock up on some flax seed or flax oil and keep that thousands of years old tradition alive and well! 

Immune Boosting Food #4. Spinach

Popeye loved it – and for good reason!  Spinach is a green treasure trove of minerals and nutrients, including vitamins A and C, both of which play a fundamental role in keeping the immune system in tip-top condition.  It also contains generous amounts of iron, magnesium and calcium, all of which play a vital role in maintaining the heart, muscles, blood and nervous system. [4]

Immune Boosting Food #5. Red bell peppers

The humble red bell pepper is way too modest for its own good!  That’s because they average double the amount of vitamin C than citrus fruit – and that’s a great deal for the immune system and helping the body to fight off infections and protect virtually every part of your body, from your skin to your bones to your eyes.  Red bell peppers are also high in vitamin E, another potent antioxidant and great friend the human immune system.  [5]

Immune Boosting Food #6. Turmeric

Turmeric has been used in Asian cuisine for thousands of years, and for good reason.  The yellow, earthy powder, often used in Indian curry meals to add vibrancy to the dish, is exceptionally good for the immune system.  That’s because turmeric is jam packed full of minerals and compounds that allow turmeric to be a potent anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal anti-viral and anti-bacterial agent.  Turmeric is also what is known as “immunomodulatory” – that it is able to strengthen the immune system against viruses. On top of all that, evidence continues to grow that turmeric is effective as an anti-carcinogenic agent and is effective in combatting the onset and symptoms of Alezheimer’s disease. [6]  Well worth having in your spice rack! 

Immune Boosting Food #7. Almonds

Almonds are one of nature’s power houses when it comes to the immune system.  With a very distinctive taste, they are also relatively low in calories compared to other nuts, which is of course great news if you are keeping an eye on your waistline.  Almonds are rich in vitamin E – a vital nutrient for the immune system.  They are also replete with iron, another key element for the body’s immune system. [7]

Read: 10 Benefits of Almonds

Immune Boosting Food #8. Kiwi fruit

When it comes to vitamin C, kiwi fruit really takes the gold medal.  It’s absolutely jam-packed with the vitamin, with one cup of kiwi fruit a day offering up nearly 300% of the body’s daily intake!  [8] Vitamin C is extremely important for the immune system as it is a powerful antioxidant that protects the body from free radical damage such as cancer and cardio-vascular disease.  (Free radicals are unstable atoms that can be consumed through what we eat, the (polluted) air we breathe, tobacco smoke and alcohol).  

Immune Boosting Food #9. Walnuts

We’re back with the nuts again – this time a shout out for walnuts and their immune system benefits.  Walnuts have generous amounts of omega-3 fatty acids which have been shown to boost the immune system and help stave off serious medical problems such as cardio-vascular disease and cancer. [9] Walnuts are also rich in a range of minerals and nutrients such as heart-friendly potassium and phosphorous and vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, A, C and E – crucial for a healthy heart and central nervous system.  [10]

Immune Boosting Food #10. Sweet Potato

Last, but certainly not least, we have sweet potato.  Coming with a delightful taste, sweet potato has been identified as having any number of health benefits, including boosting the immune system, being anti-carcinogenic and anti-inflammatory. [11]  Unsurprisingly, we again find rich amounts of vitamin C cropping up with sweet potatoes.  They also contain beta-carotene, a compound that once ingested is turned into vitamin A by the human body – another key player in keeping the immune system fighting fit.  Both orange and purple sweet potatoes have also been identified as having cancer-fighting properties, particularly so concerning breast, bladder, colon and stomach cancers. [12] [13] With all that in mind, what is there to not like about sweet potato?!
















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