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  • Writer's pictureKhushali Shah

Superfoods that will Help Improve your Immunity



The immune system is an essential part of the body's defense mechanism. Its complex

network of cells, tissues, and organs work together to defend the body against viruses and

bacteria. As a result, it plays an essential role in maintaining overall health and well-being.

Superfoods act as supporters in avoiding infections, diseases, or other health problems to

occur.


It is crucial to remember that to maximize your immunity; you need to combine a healthy diet with regular cardio and strength workouts, like that on an elliptical rowing machine.


What are superfoods? How does food help?


Superfoods are foods high in nutrients and antioxidants which offer health benefits beyond

essential nutrition.


Ten foods that help build the immune system


Berries


Berries are rich in antioxidants like anthocyanins, which possess anti-inflammatory and

immune-boosting effects. In addition, the vitamins and minerals in berries, including vitamin

C and potassium are essential for a healthy immune system.


Studies have suggested that consuming blueberries and other berries may have several

benefits for the immune system, including:


● Reducing inflammation: The antioxidants help in reducing the inflammation in the

body.


● Supporting immune cell function: Anthocyanins help to enhance immune cell

function, including activating natural killer cells and reducing oxidative stress in

immune cells.


● Boosting gut health: The fiber found in berries supports the growth of good gut

bacteria.


Leafy greens like Spinach


Leafy greens, such as Spinach, are considered nutrient-dense foods rich in vitamins,

minerals, and antioxidants that may offer several potential health benefits, including

supporting the immune system.


Some of the critical nutrients found in leafy greens include:


● Vitamin A: It plays a critical role in maintaining the immune system's health.


● Vitamin C: the antioxidant properties protect immune cells from damage caused by

free radicals.


● Vitamin K: It is essential for immune cell function and has been shown to help reduce

inflammation in the body.


● Iron: Iron is essential for producing red blood cells and properly functioning the

immune system.


Nuts and Oilseeds


Nuts and oilseeds like almonds, fenugreek seeds, and sunflower seeds offer rich sources of

vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, and antioxidants that support the immune system. They

include:


● Vitamin E: They possess antioxidant properties by protecting immune cells from

being damaged by free radicals.


● Magnesium plays a critical role in immune function by reducing inflammation.


● Healthy fats: Nuts and oilseeds are excellent sources of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty

acids, which provide immune support and anti-inflammatory.


● Zinc: It is essential to help reduce the severity of colds and other respiratory

infections.


Yogurt


Yoghurt is a fermented dairy product that is rich in nutrients. Yogurt contains several vital

nutrients that are important for immune function, including:


● Probiotics: Yogurt contains live cultures of bacteria, known as probiotics, which can

help support the growth and working of beneficial bacteria in the gut, as a healthy gut

microbiome is essential for a strong immune system.


● Vitamin D: Some types of yogurt are fortified with vitamin D, which helps stimulate

the production and activity of immune cells. A deficiency in vitamin D has been

associated with an increased risk of infections.


● Protein: Yogurt provides protein. Protein is needed to maintain a good muscle mass

in the diet and produce immune cells and antibodies that help fight off infections.


● Zinc: Some types of yogurt also contain zinc, which is an essential mineral that

helps support immune function.


Garlic


Garlic is a widely recognized superfood used for its medicinal properties for centuries. Garlic

contains allicin which has antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral properties.


In addition, some research has suggested that garlic may help support immune function by:


● Stimulating immune cells: Garlic has been shown to stimulate the production and

the activity of specific immune cells, like natural killer cells and macrophages, which are

responsible for fighting off infections.


● Reducing inflammation: Garlic contains compounds that have been shown to have

anti-inflammatory effects, which help reduce chronic inflammation.


● Supporting antioxidant activity: Garlic, a good source of antioxidants, helps to protect

immune cells from oxidative stress and damage.


Citrus Fruits


Citrus fruits are a great source of antioxidant vitamin C that helps protect immune cells from

damage caused by free radicals. In addition, citrus fruits are also a good source of

flavonoids, which are plant compounds with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.

Moreover, vitamins A, B6, potassium, and folate are essential to the immune system's

proper functioning.


Green Tea


Green tea is a widely consumed drink known for its potential health benefits. Green tea

contains polyphenols, which exhibit antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Like garlic,

it stimulates the production of new immune cells, thus playing a critical role in fighting off

infections and reducing inflammation in the body.


Kefir


Kefir is a fermented drink that contains a variety of probiotics or beneficial bacteria that can

promote good gut health in addition to being a good source of nutrients like protein, calcium,

and vitamin D. Probiotics in kefir can help to restore the balance of healthy bacteria in the

gut, which is essential for overall health and immunity by reducing the risk of chronic

diseases like heart disease and cancer.


Fish oil


Omega 3 is found in fish oils, which the body is unable to produce on its own and should be

obtained through the diet as they provide:


● Enhancing immune cell function: Omega-3 fatty acids may help enhance the function

of specific immune cells, such as B cells and T cells, responsible for fighting off

infections.


● Reducing oxidative stress: The antioxidant properties of omega-3 fatty acids may

help reduce oxidative stress in immune cells, which can improve their function and

help protect them from damage.


● Reducing inflammation: Chronic inflammation can weaken the immune system over

time and Omega-3 fatty acids help strengthen it.


Olive Oil


They are rich in antioxidants and monounsaturated fats. The antioxidants found in olive oil

are polyphenols and vitamin E, which reduce oxidative stress and inflammation in the body

giving rise to chronic diseases, including those that can affect the immune system, such as

cancer and autoimmune disorders.


Conclusion


These foods do have potential benefits for the immune system. Still, they must be in

conjunction with low-stress and regular exercise. In addition, a well-balanced diet that

includes a variety of nutrient-dense foods is vital for supporting overall health and immunity.




Healthy and Khush is a blog dedicated to sharing science-based tips and hacks that will help

you lose weight and keep it off.




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