We've all been told since we were young to eat citrus fruits like orange for vitamin C and chicken noodle soup for boosting our immune system-- especially when fighting a cold. You would be pleasantly surprised that there are some miracle-working foods that we may be missing out on! When our health is compromised, it inhibits us from functioning optimally in our personal and work life. Here's a list of powerful immune boosting foods you can include in your daily nourishment to maintain a strong immune system for a healthy and vibrant life.
Bone broth – very nutritious food that has anti-inflammatory amino acids (glycine, arginine and proline), rich minerals, magnesium, phosphorous, and sulfur. Some women are drinking bone broth for anti-aging properties and to promote their weight loss. It has so many benefits to the body, you should give it a try! You can make this in many different ways.
Garlic – truly a miracle-worker food known to be antiviral, antibacterial, and have sulfuric compound (allicin). Some Naturopathic doctors recommend swallowing chopped up raw garlic like pills when you are fighting off a common cold. This way you aren’t left with stinky breath and naturally boost your immunity.
Spinach – powerhouse vegetable which is loaded with vitamin C, folic acid, and potassium. Cooked or raw, you can add it to many dishes you have already and find other creative ways to increase your green consumption.
Mushroom – packed with vitamin D, zinc, this all-round super-star is added to many dishes we know. Don’t skip out on your daily dose of mushrooms!
Broccoli – known to detox the liver and prevents illness as most cruciferous veggies do.
Shellfish (ie. Oyster) – packed with zinc, which strengthens your immunity. Keep in mind for different seasons of when they are harvested, and eat in moderation.
Probiotic foods + drinks
60% to 70% of our Immune system is in the gut so taking good care of our digestive system plays a huge role in having a strong Immune system. There are some foods that help replenish the “good bacteria” in our GI tract.
Tempeh – it has a firmer texture than tofu but they are both fermented soybeans and has probiotic benefits. You can cut these into pieces and pan-fry them to add good texture to your salad or stir fry.
Miso – has antioxidants, B-vitamin you can find this at sushi restaurants or you can make it yourself! It is not hard at all, you just have to purchase the miso paste and follow the directions, but watch out for the ones with MSG. Good idea for an Asian-themed dinner.
Pickled vegetables (ie. Kimchi, Sour pickles, Sauerkraut) – really great source of probiotics, vitamins, and antioxidants! Kimchi can be a perfect addition if you like spicy foods and you are daring to try ethnic foods. You can do so much with it such as kimchi fried rice, kimchi pancakes, stir fried kimchi, and kimchi soup.
Sourdough bread – here is a reason why you should choose sourdough than plain white bread. Toasted sourdough bread has a crunchy and chewy texture which adds greatly to a sandwich. Many like the flavor and it has good bacteria beneficial for our digestive tract.
Kombucha – rich in beneficial bacteria that is dairy-free, which is also a good source of B-vitamins. You can drink this health tonic for a refreshing enjoyment for a little kick during your day.
Ginger, Lemon, and Honey tea – does wonders for a sore throat and boosting the immune system. Bring the water to a boil, toss in slices of ginger then boil together for about 20 minutes then let it cool a bit before pouring yourself a cup. Add a nice squeeze of lemon and spoonful of honey to taste.
Water Kefir – also known as Japanese water crystals is a probiotic beverage similar to Kombucha. You can make it with Stevia instead of sugar and combination of fruits to your liking.
Nut Milk – Not only is a source of protein for vegans but it also has lactobacilli as active live cultures are being added in the production process as of late.