Keeping your body healthy from the inside out can help strengthen your immune system and fight off disease. But before you reach for those vitamin bottles, take a look at these 5 nutrient-packed superfoods that can help naturally boost your immune system.
How Does The Immune System Function?
As you go through life, your body encounters many toxins, viruses, and pathogens. It is the immune system’s job to defend your body from these harmful substances and keep you healthy. The primary tasks of the immune system are
- To recognize and neutralize harmful substances from the environment
- To fight disease-causing changes in the body (cancerous cells)
- To fight disease-causing pathogens like bacteria, viruses, parasites, and fungi. And to remove them from the body.
A healthy immune system is efficient at keeping harmful invaders out. But things like stress, lack of sleep, and malnutrition can weaken the immune system and make you more susceptible to getting sick.
What Are Superfoods?
Superfoods are foods that are nutrient-dense and contain a high amount of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Another great thing about superfoods is that they are usually low in calories. The antioxidants in superfoods can help neutralize free radicals and prevent cell damage. And minerals and vitamins provide essential nutrients to keep your body healthy.
Many people don’t get enough nutrients and antioxidants from their diet and could choose to supplement with vitamins. But the jury is still out on whether vitamins work as well as nutrients from food sources. So you can’t go wrong with adding superfoods to your diet. Read below for a list of 5 superfoods that can boost your immune system.
5 Superfoods to Boost Your Immune System
Garlic can add flavor to any dish, and many cultures frequently incorporate it in their cooking. But garlic is also a famous superfood. It is full of antioxidants and can help strengthen your body’s natural defenses. Regular consumption of garlic can also help lower cholesterol and positively influence blood pressure.
Ginger is an excellent addition to teas, smoothies, juices, and more. Ginger helps reduce inflammation and diminish pain, making it a great choice for soothing a sore throat or managing a cold. Many people also use ginger to help alleviate nausea. And are some studies that suggest ginger could help lower cholesterol.
Berries contain compounds called flavonoids, which have been shown to help lower the risk of a heart attack. Most berries are also full of antioxidants and vitamins, so they make an excellent addition to your diet. The following are the three most nutrient-dense berries.
Goji berries are high in vitamins E and C. Acai berries contain 19 different amino acids in addition to regular berry flavonoids. And Blueberries are high in fiber, manganese, and vitamin K.
Most dark and leafy greens are considered super healthy. But kale, especially, made a splash in popular culture in the last few years. Kale contains fiber, antioxidants, calcium, vitamins C and K, iron, and several other nutrients. Kale is high in water and fiber content and can help prevent constipation. Additionally, kale amounts to 680 percent of a person’s daily vitamin K needs.
Green tea is an excellent source of antioxidants and can be useful in keeping you hydrated. Green tea contains caffeine, so it could give you a boost of power without the jitters that sometimes accompany coffee consumption. Some studies suggest that green tea can help reduce stress levels. So next time you reach for that cup of coffee, make a healthier choice and grab a cup of this potent superfood instead.
Ensuring your body has all the nutrients, minerals, and antioxidants it needs can help your immune system function at its highest potential. And the most nutrient-dense superfoods could already be hiding in your fridge!