Foods to Improve Your Immune System
Who doesn’t want a healthy immune system? (Raise your hand!) But did you know the role your diet plays in keeping it in top shape to protect you from toxins and infections? Sadly, too many of us don’t eat enough of the fresh fruits, vegetables and other foods we need to keep ourselves healthy year-round. You can’t just eat an orange or grapefruit and expect one quick burst of vitamin C to prevent a cold. A truly healthy immune system depends on a balanced mix of vitamins and minerals over time, plus normal sleep patterns and a daily dose of exercise. With some exceptions, it’s nature’s intent for us to get our vitamins and minerals from our food rather than in pill form. Here are some of my top recommended foods to help boost your immune system, every day.
This popular ingredient is also known for immune health. It contains a number of compounds that can provide immune support, with the most powerful being allicin. Allicin is converted into sulfur-containing compounds that, as research has shown, may boost the power and response of certain white blood cells. Garlic has shown efficacy in both the treatment and prevention of colds and flu. Chopping and crushing garlic is the best way to activate allicin. So, after chopping, keep your garlic away from heat for 10 minutes before cooking.
Green tea is a terrific source of antioxidants and amino acids that can boost immune strength and it’s a tasty beverage too! First, it’s the best source of epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), a powerful antioxidant that has been shown to boost immune response to fight infections. Green tea is also a good source of L-theanine, which can enhance immune function by stimulating the secretion of immune-cytokines (early responders to infection). Other sources of L-theanine include coffee, black tea, and oolong tea
Lion’s Mane Mushroom
The King of all mushrooms, I think! This is because it’s known to boost the strength of the immune system, helping your body to fight off sickness and stay healthy. It is also good for digestive and colon health, as it contains beta glucan polysaccharides which are considered one of the best foods for health in general. This is because they are immunomodulators which help make your immune system smarter. It can help raise your immune system’s response so your body can naturally fight off and kill bacteria and prevent viral attack. The term immunomodulator here is the real key; it is not an immune stimulant. Immune stimulation presumably occurs with substances like echinacea and colostrum. Beta glucan modulates or activates but never over stimulates, which is key to it’s safety.
These delicious berries have been used since ancient times right into the modern age as a daily tonic for keeping illness at bay. Scientific research now confirms many of the properties herbalists have long subscribed to elderberry; they’re anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and they contain constituents like pectin that help the body build and rebuild tissues. Energetically speaking, elderberries are gently warming and stimulating to the body, with a particular focus on the lungs. Because of it’s naturally sweet taste, it’s great for kids too! Start taking this at the first sign of any illness.
If at the end you find that you need extra immune support to boost your immunity, one of the best things you can do is to receive an IV of Vitamin C along with Glutathione to really knock out any infection trying to invade your body!