How to Boost Your Immunity?
GUWAHATI: In this alarming situation of coronavirus pandemic all over the world, apart from following all the safety measures like washing our hands frequently with alcohol based sanitizer, covering our face while coughing or sneezing or avoiding mass gathering etc we also have to build up our immunity to prevent all kinds of diseases.
Immunity is our body's own protection or security system to fight invading microorganisms like bacteria, parasites etc. This keeps us away from all kind of disease, thus to make our immunity system strong, we must include certain kinds of foods in our daily diet.
1.Citrus fruits :
These contain maximum amount of Vitamin C, which is the main antioxidant available to fight with all kinds of diseases. When we catch a cold, it is recommended that we should have Vitamin C, as it helps build up our immune system. Vitamin C increases the production of white blood cells and these are key to fight infections. This supports various mechanisms to produce both innate and adapted immunity.
Some popular citrus fruits include amla, oranges, grapefruit, kiwi and lemons.
Because our body doesn’t produce or store it, we need daily vitamin C for continued health. With such a variety to choose from, it’s easy to add a squeeze of this vitamin to any meal. Doctors have been recommending Vitamin C during this time of widespread infections.
2.Curd or Yoghurt or Buttermilk:
These contain protein as well as pro-biotic making them essential to add in our diet. These contain protein as well as ‘live active cultures’ or dose of beneficial microorganisms.
Protein builds up immunity by producing antibodies which are protein in nature, whereas pro-biotic keep our gut healthy by inducing a number of signalling pathways.
Thus at least 2 servings of 150- 200 gm serving of either of these is advisable daily. Even adding fruits with greek yoghurt makes it both healthy and tasty too!
3.Ginger and Garlic :
These two common kitchen ingredients of India are potential immunity boosters as well. Ginger is a strong antioxidant that has been shown to naturally boost the immune system. Ginger helps to kill cold viruses and has been said to combat chills and fever. It is also a great detox. Ginger root helps relax the intestinal tract and eliminate intestinal gas.
Garlic, this member of onion family contains a compound known as allicin which triggers our immune system in the right way. This allicin quickly converts into sulphur containing compounds thus increasing our immunity.
Thus ginger concoction or raw garlic (chopped or crushed) should be taken daily at least once.
Though all the vegetables have got lots of essential vitamins and minerals to make our body strong and healthy, there are these top immune boosters -
This is almost the king of all the green vegetables containing almost all immunity inducing properties. Spinach, kale these contain lots of vitamin C improving immunity, even helps to produce another super antioxidant vitamin E. Large amount of folate present in it makes it more essential for building up immunity.
Most of the cruciferous vegetables especially broccoli contains active compounds to fight against diseases.
Sulphoraphane is found to induce various enzymatic reactions thus improving active fight against microorganisms.
These also contain choline to help in maturation of immune system.
Red bell pepper:
The amount of vitamin C present in red bell pepper is twice the amount present in citrus fruits. Moreover, it contains large amount of vitamin A or beta carotene making it indispensable for healthier immune system. Thus this food contains double dose of immunity boosters.
So all of these vegetables and other vegetables like carrot, beetroot, onion, peas, and beans all should be present in our daily diet at least in 3 servings.
Almond is considered one of the healthiest snacks of daily life. But it is also a natural immunity booster due to the nutrients present in it.
It contains vitamin E which enhances the first line of defence or cellular immunity against invading microorganisms.
Almond has also got protein in it to produce antibodies to combat antigens.
Moreover, presence of iron in it makes it more important for immune function. Iron helps in maturation of lymphocytes.
Thus 2-3 soaked almonds daily will surely help us to fight against all kinds of infectious diseases.
Apart from these Vitamin D rich foods like fatty fish liver oil- egg yolk, mushrooms, whole grains, oatmeal are also effective to fight against all kinds of diseases. Thus inclusion of all these food items in our diet is inevitable to remain healthy. Moreover, we must avoid sugar or sugar containing foods -beverages to keep our body disease free.