Immune Boosting Foods
Alongside organic eating, here are some diet and lifestyle choices that you can make in order to keep your immune system strong and healthy.
Energy and Nutrients
The immune system is a massive consumer of energy and nutrients and will be quickly affected when your body isn’t getting adequate supply. Eating organic is a great way to boost your nutrient intake per calorie. Some of the most essential nutrients to support immune function are:
- Vitamin C (which is abundant in red capsicum, broccoli and citrus fruit)
- Vitamin E (found in most nuts and seeds)
- Zinc (found in meat, legumes, whole grains, nuts, eggs and dairy)
- Vitamin A (found in organ meats, oily fish, pumpkin and carrot)
- and Vitamin D (found of course in the sun, and in smaller amounts in mushrooms).
Exercise stimulates immunity by boosting circulation and lymph drainage, which produces immune-boosting white blood cells. Excessive exercise, however, is associated with a decrease in immune function, so be careful not to overdo it!
Sleep is a very important component of immunity. A lack of sleep has been shown to reduce the number and activity of immune cells which can lead to an increased risk of illness. If you're needing a little help with winding down at night, chamomile, lavender, valerian and lemon balm are all wonderful choices.
Pre and Probiotics
Some great natural sources of prebiotics include garlic, onions, asparagus, bananas (the less ripe the better), apples and oats. Some great probiotic options are yoghurt, sauerkraut, kimchi, miso and kombucha. Recent research has also shown that the good bacteria in dirt found on organic vegetables has a positive effect on immune function.
Making the determined choice to look after your body when we all lead such busy lives can be difficult, but worthwhile. What are some of your immune boosting tips? Please let us know on Facebook and Social Media.