Updated: Jan 4, 2021
The main purpose of your immune system is to protect your body from viruses and bacteria. Without it, they’d have free reign and you’d be constantly falling ill. A properly functioning immune system helps protect you through life as you come into contact with germs and bugs from pets, other people, and your environment. Without a healthy immune system, you could pick up infections and infectious diseases more easily, and the effects could be serious – even fatal.
Do you often get sick? Colds tend to linger? Always tired? This might be a sign that your immune system needs a boost. You can improve the function of your immune system by limiting alcohol, getting enough sleep, limiting stress and exercising regularly. What you consume on a daily basis also contributes to a healthy immune system. Here are 5 foods to start adding to your diet to naturally build your immune system.
Spinach is high in Vitamin A, C, E and Fiber. It is also a powerful antioxidant that helps to decrease inflammation- which is linked to health conditions such as heart disease.
The fiber found in spinach and other plants helps to promote a healthy gut- which not only improves your immunity-it also helps to block harmful pathogens from attacking your digestive tract. Spinach also is a good source of beta carotene- which increases the infection fighting ability of the immune system.
Broccoli also a great source of Vitamin A, C, E and Fiber. In order to keep the as many nutrients as possible, it is recommended to steam your broccoli.
3. Citrus Fruits
These foods are high in Vitamin C-the key to fighting infections. Your body doesn't store Vitamin C, so you need a daily dose of this nutrient for a healthy immune system.
4. Red Bell Peppers
Did you know that citrus fruits don't have the most vitamin C of any fruit or vegetable? Ounce for ounce, red bell peppers contain almost 3 times as much vitamin C (127 mg) as a Florida orange (45 mg). They’re also a rich source of beta carotene.
Ginger is known to decrease inflammation. It can also help reduce a sore throat and may lower your cholesterol.
Begin incorporating these foods that are rich in nutrients and antioxidants. They will help give you an upper hand as you build a healthy immune system naturally.