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With the growing spread of the Coronavirus pandemic globally, there is an urgent need to stay healthy by observing strict health precautions and also eating right.
Your immune system helps protect you from various infections and conditions, such as colds, influenza, and the COVID-19 virus, and may play a huge part in minimizing its symptoms.
In order to function properly, your immune system requires several nutrients that you can get from your diet every day. These nutrients include protein, vitamins A, C, and E, plus the minerals zinc and iron help fight infections.
You, therefore, stand a better chance against this virus by indulging in these 10 common superfoods.
It is no longer news that Ginger has many health benefits and wonders to the body.
Due to its strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, this ingredient is effective for boosting the immune system naturally.
Ginger also helps kill cold viruses and has been said to combat chills and fever. It also helps reduce sore throats, eliminate nausea and other inflammatory illnesses.
2. Citrus fruits
Citrus fruits are high in Vitamin C, a nutrient that boosts the immune system.
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant and protects the body from damaging free radicals.
It also helps keep the flu away and increases the production of white blood cells hence why it’s one of the foods doctors prescribe during this COVID-19 period.
Citrus fruits also have good amounts of other vitamins and minerals that your body needs to function properly, including B vitamins, potassium, phosphorous, magnesium, and copper.
Examples of citrus fruits are lemon, orange, lime, grapefruit, tangerines.
Not only is yogurt packed with vitamins, zinc and protein, but it’s also a source of lactobacillus, a probiotic (or beneficial type of bacteria) that helps fight off the bad guys and also gives your immune system a boost and fight diseases.
Probiotics are healthy bacteria that can help boost your immune system and decrease stomach issues, such as diarrhea and pain.
Keep your yogurt healthy by choosing the plain, low-fat and unsweetened types and if possible, try the Greek yogurt which has less sugar and more carbs.You can add nuts and berries or honey to sweeten.
If you don’t like Garlic, you are doing yourself more harm than good.
Garlic contains an active compound called ‘Allicin’ which helps the immune system fight colds and flu caused by viruses.
In this period of Coronavirus, Garlic can reduce the risk of becoming sick in the first place, as well as how long you stay sick.
It can also reduce the severity of symptoms if you get sick and help you recover faster.
Here are a few ways to maximize the health benefits of garlic:
- Crush or slice all your garlic before you eat it. This increases the allicin content.
- Before you cook with your crushed garlic, let it stand for 10 minutes.
- Use a lot of garlic — more than one clove per meal, if you can.
5. Sweet Potatoes
Baked, Boiled, Fried, Sweet potatoes should not be missing on your meal plan this period.
They are rich in vitamin A and beta carotene and the antioxidants found in them benefit not only your immune system but also help fight off infections.
Sweet Potatoes are also high in fiber, vitamin C, potassium, pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), niacin (vitamin B3), vitamin B6, manganese, magnesium, and copper.
Broccoli is a vegetable that contains choline, a nutrient essential to a healthy diet.
They are also rich in antioxidant vitamins like lutein and sulforaphane which give an immune system boost and fight against infections.
Packed with vitamins A, C, and E, as well as many other minerals and fiber, broccoli is one of the healthiest vegetables you can put on your table.
Almonds are high in vitamin E that acts as an antioxidant in the body, helps immune system function and fights viral infections.
It acts as a “big brother” to other vitamins, protecting them from oxidation and, thus, allowing them to do their work.
According to a study, naturally occurring chemicals found in almond skins improved the ability of the white blood cells to detect viruses while also increasing the body’s ability to prevent viruses from replicating and so spreading inside the body.
They’re perfect as a healthy snack and can be added to salads and yogurt.
Carrots contain antioxidants, vitamins and fiber which help your body fight free radicals, cell damage, and inflammation. Vitamin C in carrot juice also provides an immune system boost, helping you get through cold and flu season.
Carrots are an excellent source of beta carotene, which gives them their bright color. One of beta carotene’s jobs is to support the body’s mucus membrane, which lines the respiratory and intestinal tracts, making it harder for bacteria to enter the bloodstream and cause trouble.
Oats are high in beta-glucan, a special fiber that helps boost our infection-fighting blood cells.
It also contains selenium and zinc, two important nutrients for warding off infection and helping you stay in fighting shape.
Start your mornings by indulging in a bowl of oats.
10.Red Bell pepper
Also called ‘Tatashe’ in Yoruba, Bell peppers are a rich source of beta carotene.
They also boost your immune system and are said to contain twice as much vitamin C as citrus.