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Natural Cure

11 Natural Foods To Boost Immunity

Boosting your immunity naturally is the best prevention from diseases. However, since the pandemic immunity booster foods, supplements, and over-the-counter concoctions have become popular.

Various nutraceuticals, dietary supplements, and functional foods are promoted by manufacturers as immunity boosters. A strong immune system indeed keeps you healthy, but is it okay to depend on processed supplements or drugs to boost your immunity?

The answer is, no. The best way to bolster your body’s defenses and immunity is by adopting a clean and natural lifestyle. But let’s first deep dive into what exactly is immunity and how it works?

YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM

Immunity is your body’s defense mechanism against any outside invasion - bacteria, viruses, pathogens, other microorganisms, allergens, etc. Our immune system works at multiple levels.

First Line Of Defense - Barriers such as our Skin keep a check on the entry of pathogens and undesirable elements inside our bodies. Acids in our gut (stomach) kill the pathogens that are trying to enter our intestines.

Second Line of Defense - If in any case, the physical checks fail, and the safety barrier is crossed, certain immune cells get activated and they immediately remove or repair damaged or infected body cells. A classic example is blood clotting and inflammation that happens after getting a paper cut.

Active Protection - If both of the above levels are crossed by the microorganisms, then the body’s immune system attacks the pathogens directly and tries to eliminate them. 

HOW TO BOOST YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM WITH NATURAL FOODS?

Here are 11 natural immunity booster foods that you can easily find in your kitchen. Include them in your daily diet to stay protected from infections:

1. Fruits rich in Vitamin C & Antioxidants: Orange, Sweet Lime, Guava, Pineapple, Strawberries, etc. Do not mix eating fruits with any other food group. They are best eaten as breakfast or on empty stomach in the evening. Read more about following a mono-fruit breakfast here

2. Papaya: Papaya is high in antioxidants, Iron, and multiple vitamins. It enhances your body’s resistance to viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens. It is especially good for fighting cold, and other respiratory infections due to the presence of vitamin C, E, and beta-carotene. It can also help in reducing inflammation. 

3. Green leafy Vegetables: Spinach, Methi (fenugreek), Amaranth, etc are excellent sources of iron, fiber, calcium, vitamin C. They also play an important role in regulating the immune system and enhancing the efficacy of immune cells in your gut.

4. Cruciferous Vegetables: Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and Brussel sprouts are high in sulforaphane, a chemical that activates the functioning of certain enzymes and antioxidants that revitalizes our body to clear up toxins and free radicals. However, people with thyroid disorders must consult their physician before including cruciferous vegetables in their diet. 

5. Turmeric - A compound called Curcumin is extracted from turmeric roots, it is present in the good old haldi used in Indian kitchens. Curcumin has an anti-inflammatory effect on your body. When combined with Black Pepper, the bio-availability (the ability of your body to absorb a nutrient) of curcumin increases substantially. So, don’t forget to add black pepper to your turmeric milk. Go for dairy-free golden milk for best results (dairy adds to the toxic load in your body). 

6. Ginger: A classic example of an immunity booster food, ginger is commonly used in many households. It has anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative properties. A compound Gingerol present in ginger makes it the perfect immunity booster. 

7. Almonds, Walnuts & Other Nuts: They are rich in Vitamin E, a natural source of fiber, vitamins, antioxidants, and healthy fats. A regular intake of a handful of nuts is a key to a healthy immune system. Read how to eat nuts to get the best out of them.

8. Seeds: All seeds provide the healthy fats that our bodies need. However, Pumpkin and Sunflower seeds are excellent for your immunity. Pumpkin seeds are a rich source of zinc that helps to boost the immune system and is beneficial for men’s health. Sunflower seeds contain high amounts of folate and Vitamin E which boosts the immune system. Read more about the Superfood Seeds.

9. Herbal Tea - Add a dash of refreshing flavors by consuming herbal teas that boost your immunity. Herbs such as basil, mint, ginger, pepper, cinnamon, and lemon used in making herbal tea have an empowering impact on your immune system. Make them fresh at home by boiling herbs and try to avoid using the processed varieties. Check out a herbal tea recipe. 

10. Beet-root, Carrots, Sweet potatoes - These vegetables are rich in beta-carotene, a powerful antioxidant that reduces inflammation and boosts immunity. Check out the recipe for this delicious and immunity booster beet-root & carrot raw juice.

11. White Pumpkin or Petha (Ash Gourd): Rich in fiber and micronutrients, white pumpkin is a wonderful food to deep cleanse your digestive system and also boost your immunity. It enhances the production and function of the white blood cells (WBCs), hence increasing the fighting capacity of your immune system. Don’t miss the recipe of Ash Gourd juice towards the end of the article. 

IMMUNITY-BOOSTING RECIPES

1. White Pumpkin Juice

Prep time: 10 min

Cook time: 10 min

Serves: 1 glass of 300 ml

Ingredients:

  • White Pumpkin: 100gm

  • Curry leaves: 5 to 6

  • Lemon: 1(juiced)

  • Water: 1⁄4 glass

  • Ginger 1 inch

Method:

  1. Wash and chop the white pumpkin with the skin (if the skin is tender).
  2. Add curry leaves and water to blend.
  3. Once done, add lemon on top, stir it.

2. Basil, Mint & Ginger Tea

Prep Time: 5 mins

Cook Time: 5 min

Servings: 1-2 person

Ingredients:

  • Water: 1 1⁄2 Cup

  • Basil Leaves: 5-7

  • Ginger: a small piece (Chopped)

  • Mint Leaves: 5

  • Honey: 1 tsp (optional)

Method:

1.Put water to boil.

2.Add all the ingredients into the water and boil together for 2-3 minutes. Strain and add honey, if desired.

3.Beetroot & Greens Salad

Prep time: 20 mins

Serves: 2-3 persons

Ingredients:

  • Beetroot: 1 1⁄2 (Steamed, peeled, and diced into cubes)

  • Baby Spinach Leaves: 15 (well washed and drained)

  • Poppy seeds or sesame seeds: 3 tbsp (Well roasted and

  • crushed)

  • Walnuts: 5 (slightly roasted/broken into pieces)

  • Lemon Juice & Honey: to drizzle on top

Method:

1.Wash your beetroot well and cut in half, do not remove the skin or tail

ends yet.

2.Steam the beetroot until tender. Once steamed, take the skin out. The

skin will slip off easily - all you need to do is cut the stem and tail ends off.

3.Once cool, chop the beets into chunky pieces.

4.Reserve the poppy seeds/lemon and honey for the end, as a garnish on

top.

5.The spinach leaves can be gently torn into halves, if too big. Use their

tender stalks.

6.If lucky to get beetroot leaves, chop them finely and add to the salad.

7.Lay the leaves in a serving dish, prepare them as a bed for your beets.

Add beetroot.

8.Mix the dressing ingredients along with seeds and drizzle on top

4. Aloe Vera & Amla Juice

Ingredients:

  • One Indian Gooseberry (Amla)

  • One Aloe leaf (Extract the gel)

  • One teaspoon Pink Himalayan Salt

  • One teaspoon honey (Optional)

  • Water: 1 glass warm water

Method:

1.It is time to blend the extracted gel and one Indian gooseberry (Amla).

2.Add water and keep the consistency thin, add Himalayan pink salt for taste

purposes.

3.Add honey (optional)

These foods and recipes are sure to give you a boost of immunity. Include them in your daily diet and observe the difference. 



Disclaimer: The health journeys, blogs, videos and all other content on Wellcure is for educational purposes only and is not to be considered a ‘medical advice’ ‘prescription’ or a ‘cure’ for diseases. Any specific changes by users, in medication, food & lifestyle, must be done under the guidance of licensed health practitioners. The views expressed by the users are their personal views and Wellcure claims no responsibility for them.

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