16 Immune System Boosting Foods

The food that you eat is so important for your body and your immune system. Thus, here are the 16 immune system boosting foods that you can try.

You derive most of the antioxidants and nutrients that your body needs from eating the right things. A good diet to boost your immune system and sustain it at high levels will always include the right fruits and vegetables for example.

Your diet needs to provide you with vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin E, and selenium. You are very unlikely to find these in processed foods unless they have been enriched with them. It is far better for you and your immune system to go for whole foods that are fresh.

Some good examples are citrus fruits, nuts, and leafy green vegetables. These foods have high levels of the antioxidants and nutrients that you require to give your immune system a great boost. So in this blog post, we will specifically point to the best immune system boosting foods.

#1 Fish

Do you include fish in your diet on a regular basis? If not, then you need to change right now. The reason to add fish to your diet is that it contains a great source of selenium. This is particularly true of tuna, which contains the highest levels.

Immune System Boosting Foods

Other types of fish and seafood have selenium in them too and you can mix things up for variety. A great fish to eat to strengthen your immune system is salmon. Salmon has a high degree of omega-3 healthy fat which has been proven to strengthen the immune system and reduce heart disease.

#2 Brazil Nuts

Another great source of selenium can be found in Brazil nuts. You need a good amount of selenium in your diet as it is a powerful antioxidant that is good for an immune system boost. You can get more than the recommended daily amount of selenium by eating a single Brazil nut.

#3 Sunflower Seeds

You should eat sunflower seeds because they contain high levels of vitamin E. An ounce of sunflower seeds can provide you with over 75% of the daily recommended intake of vitamin E. You need vitamin E as it is another powerful antioxidant that bolsters your immune system.

#4 Lentils

A lot of people consume lentils as an alternative to meat or fish but you can include them in any diet. A single cup of lentils will provide a good amount of selenium as well as nutrients to strengthen your immune system and they provide protein and fiber too.

#5 Yogurt

If you eat the right kind of yogurt you will introduce good bacteria (yes there are good bacteria as well as bad) into your body which will fight the bad bacteria and also help with your digestion.

#6 Carrots

Carrots are delicious vegetables that contain zinc as well as vitamin A, B, C, and E. It has been shown many times that zinc is beneficial to our immune systems. In fact, if your body is deficient in zinc it will make your immune system weaker.

#7 Garlic

Garlic is another food that provides a good source of zinc. A lot of research has been conducted around garlic with some researchers claiming that it is a good way to keep out the common cold. People suffering from cancer were able to boost their immune systems by consuming garlic according to some studies.

#8 Broccoli

You may have heard that broccoli is good for you before and this is true. It contains phytonutrients that can really help to bolster your immune system. One serving of broccoli will provide one-third of your daily vitamin A intake and it is also rich in antioxidants.

#9 Spinach

There is a lot of vitamin C in spinach and some vitamin E as well. Keep your spinach raw so that you can get all of the nutrients from it. You can easily add spinach to a sandwich or a salad.

#10 Sweet Potatoes

This is another great tasting vegetable that will provide a good source of vitamin A. Just a single serving of sweet potato will provide over three times your daily recommended intake of vitamin A. It also contains other beneficial antioxidants as well.

#11 Citrus Fruits

You may already be aware that vitamin C is essential for your immune system. Citrus fruits are packed with vitamin C. To get your daily intake just have an orange or grapefruit for your breakfast and then add some sliced lemon to the water that you drink.

#12 Watermelons

Not everyone is a fan of watermelons but they do contain a lot of nutrients to boost your immune system. Watermelons also contain potassium which is important for the regulation of body functions. It also contains vitamin C and vitamin A.

#13 Blueberries

Did you know that blueberries are full of antioxidants? Well, they are – in fact, they contain more antioxidants than any other fruit or vegetable. Blueberries are great for strengthening your immune system and they can also help to lower the risk of heart disease, cholesterol, and even cancer.

#14 Pomegranates

You can get a lot of the nutrients you need from eating pomegranates. They contain a wide variety of antioxidants and they help to fight inflammation as well which is great for your immune system.

#15 Mushrooms

Mushrooms are delicious and they can really help to stimulate your immune system. The Agarikon and Reishi mushrooms have been part of studies that proved they had a beneficial effect on the human immune system.

Immune System Boosting Foods

These studies showed that Reishi mushrooms could interfere with a virus attacking the body and reduce its ability to multiply by attaching to cells. The Agarikon mushroom can be an antibacterial agent and it also has good anti-inflammatory properties.

#16 Turmeric

We’ll close this post on immune system boosting foods with turmeric. It is a very pleasant spice that you can easily add to your cooking. Turmeric can actually be a poison for cancer cells and it can reduce inflammation as well.

Images courtesy of:
PublicDomainPictures, Reinhard Thrainer, Daniel Dan outsideclick, Katalin Molnár, Pixabay

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16 Immune System Boosting Foods

Part 4 of Boost Your Immune System Series
Pam Byc
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