8 Superfoods to Fight Infection
By feeding your body superfoods, you can help keep your immune system strong. This is the system that helps fight against bacterial or viral infections and keeps the body healthy. Things like sugar and fatty foods can weaken your immunity to certain colds or the flu, and it may be necessary to investigate how your diet may be helping or hindering your health. When you are facing seasonal periods of illness, such as the winter cold or spring allergy infections, be sure to add these 15 immune-boosting foods and supplements to your diet.
1. Citrus Fruits. Many people turn to a vitamin C supplement or drink when they feel a cold coming on, and with good reason. Vitamin C is thought to stimulate the production of white blood cells, which are necessary for fighting infections. Fruits to add to your diet include oranges, grapefruit, tangerines. Clementine’s, limes, or lemon. Including fresh lime or lemon in your water can help increase your daily intake, which is important since the body can neither store or produce vitamin C.
2. Red Bell Peppers. Even more powerful than citrus fruits, red bell peppers contain extremely high levels of vitamin C. In fact, each ounce contains twice as much of the vitamin when compared to citrus. They also contain notable amounts of beta carotene, which helps develop healthy skin and boosts the immune system.
3. Broccoli. Whether steamed, roasted, or slathered in cheese sauce, broccoli is a superfood full of vitamins and minerals. In addition to a healthy dose of vitamins A, C, and E, this vegetable also contains fiber and antioxidant properties. The way to achieve the most out of this nutritious veggie is to eat it in all of its natural, uncooked, crunchy goodness.
4. Chlorella. One of the most remarkable superfood supplements on the health scene is the single-celled green algae. You can add chlorella powder to your morning smoothie for an oversized helping of antioxidants, protein, and flu prevention. This is a powerful immune booster, but it also reduces inflammation and can improve responses to the flu vaccine.
5. Garlic. Not just for inclusion in a classic Italian dish, this zingy little vegetable is packed with immune-boosting properties and infection-fighting power. Research shows that it may also help lower blood pressure and help keep arteries from clogging. Garlic contains allicin, which might be why it is so effective and promotes good health.
6. Ginger. If you have ever taken ginger ale to help with a bout of the stomach bug, you may have already experienced how ginger can help you out. It isn’t just for nausea. It can help decrease inflammation and reduce susceptibility to inflammatory illnesses. The release of gingerol, a cousin to capsaicin, may be why ginger is associated with the cholesterol-lowering properties.
7. Spinach. This green vegetable is praised for its high vitamin C content, but it also contains several antioxidants and beta carotene. Again, these two agents improve the infection-fighting ability of the body by boosting the immune system. Cooking it as little as possible with the best way to retain all of the nutrients it contains. Use it as a salad base or layer your sandwich with it for a nice healthy addition.
8. Yogurt. If you want a yogurt that boosts the immune system, you can’t just pick up one full of a crazy donut or ice cream flavors. The best yogurt for your health or organic Greek yogurt, and it should contain live and active cultures. If you have studied the effects of sugar on the body, you will know that a yogurt loaded with artificial flavors and sugars will only weaken your immune system and feed harmful bacteria. The probiotics in Greek yogurt are good for the digestive system, but the cultures can help stimulate the immune system and make it more resistant to attack. You can also look for a brand that has been fortified with vitamin D for an extra immune boost.
If you are constantly battling a runny nose or feel weak, adding some of these superfoods to your diet can help improve your body’s immunity to illness.