An apple a day keeps the doctor away. But is an apple enough to keep diseases at bay? Some foods are armed with the necessary nutrients and enzymes to fight off diseases, strengthen the immune system and maintain good health. There are innumerable benefits of immunity boosting foods such as garlic, green tea, turmeric and yogurt. It is crucial to know how to improve the immune system. Let’s take a look at some of the important foods.
Unpasteurized Grass-Fed Organic Milk
Raw organic cow milk that comes from grass-fed cows contains bacteria that boosts the immune system and is capable of easing allergies. It is rich in vitamin A, enzymes, and zinc. Even raw organic milk has a lot of benefits over pasteurized milk, which can cause cramps, diarrhea and skin rashes. It is not readily available but worth sourcing.
A great alternative to raw milk is whey protein, which also comes from grass-fed cows. It is the protein in milk and has several health benefits. It is rich in immunoglobulins that strengthen the body’s immune system, help in combating flu and colds, and boosts natural detoxification.
Traditionally fermented foods are immunity boosting foods. A great example is kefir, which is a food rich in enzymes and microorganisms and helps the body’s inner ecosystem to thrive. There are other fermented foods such as olives, yogurt, sauerkraut, pickles, miso, and natto that also strengthen the immunity. Friendly microorganisms help in the formation of antibodies, thereby proving to be great immunity boosters.
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Raw Organic Eggs
Raw eggs are not only easy on the pocket but also high on nutrients. They are a rich source of fat and high-quality protein, which should be a big part of everyone’s diet. Getting in touch with the nearest health food store is a good idea in order to source some fresh, raw eggs.
Grass-Fed Beef or Organ Meats
For those who follow a protein diet or mixed nutritional diet, grass-fed beef is a great option. It is the beef that comes from cows that feeds on grass—and not other things like grains or corn. Such beef is far more beneficial than regular beef. In fact, it is also healthier for the environment. CLA, a fatty acid found in grass-fed beef, is considered to be an immune-system enhancer. Besides CLA, grass-fed beef is also a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins A and E, zinc and beta-carotene.
Coconuts and Coconut Oil
Coconut oil contains lauric acid, which turns to monolaurin in the body—a compound present in breast milk. Hence, coconut oil is great for boosting immunity. It is best to go for organic coconut oil as they are unbleached, unrefined and free of chemicals.
Locally Grown Organic Vegetables
Nothing beats fresh, raw and organic vegetables when it comes to fighting off pathogens. They are rich sources of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and enzymes. Depending on one’s nutritional type and preferences, the type and amount of locally grown veggies should be set. It is important for the vegetables to be fresh, and raw, if possible.
Blueberries and Raspberries
Blueberries and raspberries work wonders on the body’s immunity due to their high antioxidant capacity, which is far higher than other fruits. Wild blueberries are especially beneficial for the human immune system. Blueberries derive their beautiful color from anthocyanin which is a very strong phytochemical. Blueberries and raspberries also have much lower sugar content than most fruits.
Mushrooms are high on fiber, protein, calcium, vitamins and minerals, thereby making them excellent immunity boosters. They are also rich in beta-glucans, a class of powerful compounds that enhance the human immune system.
Chlorella is the near-flawless type of immunity booster. It is a fresh water alga—a single cell organism—that helps in detoxification. It binds itself to toxins and flushes them out of the body. The secret behind chlorella’s potency and detoxifying action is chlorophyll. Chlorophyll helps in the production of more oxygen and cleansing of blood. It also helps in the developing and repairing tissues. Hence, this super food is highly recommended for the human immune system.
Herbalist Donnie Yance says that Propolis is on top of the list of broad-spectrum antimicrobial compounds the world over. It is a bee resin that is high on apigenin and caffeic acid, which are powerful phenolic compounds when it comes to boosting the immune system.
For keeping micro invaders at bay, there is nothing better than tulsi tea and Matcha green tea.
Green Tea and Matcha
Those looking for the best nutrient-rich form of green tea need not look any further than matcha. It is available as a stone-ground powder and comes in a fully unfermented form. Japan is known to be the source of the best Matcha. As compared to wild blueberries, Matcha has 17 times more antioxidants. Also, it has seven times more antioxidants than dark chocolate. Hence, the benefits of green tea cannot be overlooked.
Catechins are a form of natural chemicals. Green tea has polyphenols in the form of catechins. epigallocatechin or EGCG, the most powerful catechin in tea, has been found to be 25 to 100 times more powerful than antioxidant vitamins C and E. Matcha is over 100 times powerful than EGCG as standard green tea.
Derived from the basil herb, tulsi tea has been in use from time immemorial as an Indian Ayurvedic medicine with several health benefits. This tea is one of the richest sources of antioxidants. It not only boosts the immune system, but also the heart, memory, and vision. Its multiple health benefits make it one of the top immunity boosting foods.