Can food boost the immune system? If this idea has come to your mind, you are not alone. When it comes to preventing infections, we roughly know the drill. Please wash your hands well. Disinfect the surface. Stay home when you feel sick. However, many of us are uncertain about what to eat to prevent our bodies from constantly getting sick.
It’s easy to be a prey to marketing gimmicks developed by food brands. After all, it’s safe to assume that there is a single superfood or supplement that can boost our immunity and solve all our health problems. But in reality, it’s much more complicated than that.
Certainly certainly Vitamins can boost our immune system.. But at the same time, our body is a complex machine with sophisticated needs. Sticking to a healthy and balanced diet may be far more beneficial to our health than popping vitamin supplements. Therefore, if you want to know if foods can actually boost your immune system, keep reading. Here’s what to eat and how to stay healthy.
Which food boosts the immune system?
Fruits are one of the most nutritious food groups. Rich in vitamins, minerals and a variety of biologically active compounds, it can significantly enhance your immune defenses. Every kind of fruit has something to offer your health and well-being. For maximum benefit, try to include the entire rainbow of plants in your diet.
That said, certain fruits may have stronger immunoprotective properties than other fruits. Citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons and limes are perfect examples of foods that can boost the immune system.They are widely known to be one of the best sources of information Vitamin CNutrients routinely used to treat viral and bacterial infections. But it’s not the only compound that makes them very effective. Citrus fruits are also rich in flavonoids, especially hesperidin. Hesperidin is a powerful antioxidant that fights inflammation and respiratory viruses.According to the article Immunology FrontierRegular intake of citrus fruit juice may increase the number of white blood cells that fight the infection and reduce the levels of inflammatory markers in the body.
Another family of fruits that has been shown to promote a healthier immune system is berries. Multiple studies Berry has been shown to have antioxidant, antimutagenic, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects.
If you want to boost your immunity, one of the best ways is to include a lot of vegetables in your diet. Like fruits, this food group has a large amount of vitamins, minerals, Plant nutrients..They are also a great source of information fiber When Prebiotics – A compound that nourishes the good bacteria that live in our intestines.And keep us Intestinal health When checked, it has a beneficial effect on the immune response. Include different types of vegetables in your diet to maximize your chances of being free from infection.
Red and chili peppers are an excellent source of vitamin C, much like citrus fruits. They also contain an alkaloid called capsaicin.According to the review published in Critical review in food science and nutritionCapsaicin has powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, so it has potential clinical value for pain relief, cancer prevention and weight loss.
Brassicaceae vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts can also help boost immunity. They contain high levels of vitamins C and E, as well as a compound called glucosinolate.As explained in molecule According to the journal, glucosinolate has been shown to prevent various types of cancer, including breast, brain, blood, bone, colon, stomach, liver, lungs, oral cavity, pancreas, and prostate.
Broccoli is another great example of food that can boost your immune system. Not only does it contain many vitamins, polyphenols and glucosinolates, it is also an excellent source of substances called sulforaphane and quercetin.According to the review published in Phytochemistry Review, Sulforaphane is deeply involved in the detoxification and neutralization of chemical carcinogens and free radicals. Quercetin also has strong antioxidant, antiallergic and antiviral effects.
Special attention should also be paid to green leafy vegetables such as kale, lettuce and spinach. Spinach is considered one of the healthiest vegetables. Multiple studies It demonstrates its antioxidant, anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, hypoglycemic, and cholesterol-lowering abilities. It provides solid doses of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. Carotenoids It is called lutein.As suggested in the review Food and chemical toxicology The journal, lutein, has been shown to stimulate antibody production and combat bacterial infections.
There is growing interest in the immune-enhancing properties of mushrooms.This food group offers a fair amount selenium Both B vitamins play an important role in our immune health. In addition, for mushrooms, Autoimmune journal..
Many types of mushrooms are beneficial to our health, but recently, shiitake mushrooms have been the focus of attention.by American College of Nutrition JournalRegular intake of shiitake mushrooms significantly improves the production of white blood cells and antibodies in the body.
Fermented foods and beverages have a long history. They are one of the first processed foods consumed by humans and for many reasons. The fermentation process improves the shelf life, safety and flavor of foods such as yogurt, pickles, sauerkraut and kimchi. It also enhances their nutritional properties.
Many fermented foods contain beneficial live bacterial strains. Probiotics..Probiotics can stimulate the functioning of the immune system by increasing the toxicity of natural killer cells and regulating pro-inflammatory production. CytokineAnd studies show that white blood cell counts increase Food management journal.
When it comes to immune-boosting foods, seafood may not be the first thing that comes to mind. However, this food group has a lot to offer.For example, oily fish Omega 3 Fatty acids, melatonin, tryptophan, polyamines.According to the review published in Nutrition FrontierRegular fish intake can improve bowel health and reduce the risk of developing inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis.
Shellfish such as shrimp, lobster, oysters, mussels, scallops, lajonkairia lajonii, crabs, krill, and sardines also contain large amounts of immune-stimulating bioactive peptides, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. In fact, oysters are one of the best sources of zinc and are associated with immune health.
Spices and seasonings
Spices and seasonings are great for enhancing the flavor of a dish, but they are not the only ones that help.
Garlic is a good example of foods that can boost the immune system.According to a meta-analysis published in Nutrition JournalGarlic appears to stimulate the production of white blood cells, cytokines and immunoglobulins and regulate their function. Regular intake may contribute to the treatment and prevention of respiratory infections, gastric ulcers, and even cancer.
Ginger is another example.by International Journal of Preventive MedicineGinger has strong anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-cancer potential.
In addition, black pepper may also be able to boost the immune system.for that reason antibacterial Property, it has long been used as a food preservative. It contains a compound called piperine. Phytotherapy research Journals show many health benefits.
Over the past few years, researchers have also extensively studied the immunomodulatory properties of turmeric. Recent research Curcumin, the main active ingredient in turmeric, exhibits antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and immunomodulatory effects, demonstrating that it can reduce the risk of several types of cancer.
How to Integrate Immunity-boosting Foods into a Balanced Diet
Many foods have the ability to boost the immune system, but how can they be included in the diet?
First, focus on eating Whole Foods and cooking from scratch. Also, avoid highly processed foods. Packaged bread, microwave meals, breakfast cereals, etc. may look healthy, but they tend to have few nutrients to support immunity. If you feel uncomfortable, try citrus fruits and berries. For larger meals, be sure to add solid portions of vegetables, mushrooms, fish, shellfish, and fermented foods to the dish. Try spices and seasonings as well.
It’s also good to make sure your cooking process doesn’t destroy immune-boosting nutrients. For example, fruits and vegetables are heat sensitive and should not be overcooked. Instead, stick to steaming and gentle treatment.According to the article published in Food science and biotechnologyProlonged boiling, frying, and baking can result in reduced levels of vitamins C, A, D, E, and K, as well as minerals such as potassium, magnesium, sodium, and calcium. In fact, broccoli can lose up to 50% or more of vitamin C when boiled.
If you’re not a fan of turmeric or mushroom flavors, consider dietary supplements. Many brands offer high quality extracts made from immunity-boosting foods. It is also relatively easy to replenish probiotics in the form of tablets or capsules. For best results, look for high quality products that contain multiple different strains. However, if you are thinking of changing your supplement routine, it is advisable to consult your doctor first.
Other ways to boost the immune system
Raise physical activity level
There is no doubt that being more active is one of the best things you can do for your physical and mental health. It’s also a great way to boost your immune system.According to the article published in nutrition Journal, exercise intensity, and duration are closely related to the functioning of multiple immune system components.
Researchers from Sports medicine The journal also summarized the results of multiple studies and concluded that the higher the level of habitual physical activity, the lower the risk of getting an infection by 31% and the risk of dying from an infection by 37%.
Prioritize quality sleep
Good maintenance Sleep hygiene It can make a big difference in your quality of life. However, getting enough sleep is also an important factor in immunity. A good snooze helps balance the levels of hormones and cytokines involved in regulating the inflammatory response in the body. Annual report of the New York Academy of Sciences.
Some animal studies have also shown that the interaction of immune signaling molecules with neurochemicals during infection is significantly increased. This indicates that sleep tends to be different when you are ill. Researchers have suggested that during infection, these sleep changes help our body recover faster.
Keep your stress level under control
Short-stressing seizures help us survive dangerous situations. However, when that stress becomes chronic, it can have a serious impact on our physical health.
In the article published in Brain and behavior Journals and researchers speculate that chronic stress severely disrupts immune system signaling and increases the level of inflammation in the body. There is also increasing evidence that stress-relieving interventions have a direct impact on susceptibility to infections. for example, Multiple studies Engaging in mindfulness meditation has shown that it may reduce markers of inflammation and improve immune signaling.
Which food boosts the immune system?
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