As we continue through autumn and head into winter, it’s important to think about how we can boost our immunity and avoid habits that would lower our immune system’s ability to respond.
Did you know that there is a great deal you can do with your nutrition to affect your immune system?
Here are two foods to increase in your diet to boost your immunity, and two foods to reduce or eliminate to protect your immune system:
Foods to Increase for Better Immunity
Kale is surprisingly high in vitamin C as well as has vitamin E, selenium and beta-carotene and is a great immune booster, as are all the cruciferous vegetables.
Folks often feel intimidated by kale, but if you learn how to prepare it, it can easily become a favorite vegetable of yours for both the taste and the texture. Sautee it with a stir fry, blend it into a smoothie, or give it a good hand massage with some salt and lemon to make the base of a delicious kale salad. Or, come in for one of Krush’D Vitality Kitchen’s juices or salads containing kale.
- Wakame seaweed
We know this is a curveball! Did you know that seaweed is a fantastic immunity food? Wakame is a seaweed you may have already had in your life if you’ve gone to a Japanese restaurant and had the “seaweed salad” or seaweed side.
Wakame can boost antibody production and appears to help reduce symptoms of certain viruses. It is also high in iodine, manganese, and folate.
You can make your own seaweed salad at home, or you can utilize dried wakame into a miso soup, where it pairs beautifully with miso, mushrooms and tofu.
Just as foods and drinks can help to boost your immunity, other foods and drinks can compromise our immune system. Here are two to reduce or eliminate:
- Fried Food
Foods that are fried or processed with lots of oil, such as French fries, potato chips, onion rings, fried chicken and all other fried savory and sweet items, can all be detrimental to the immune system.
Fried foods are inflammatory and can deplete your body’s antioxidant response. They are also damaging to the health of the gut microbiome, which is increasingly becoming recognized as a central factor in our immune response.
Just skip the fast food joints altogether, and opt for healthier baked alternatives at home. For example, instead of French fries, make homemade baked potato fries with minimal oil. Swap your potato chips for healthier snacks like small handfuls of unsalted nuts.
- Refined Sugar
Refined sugar is a commonly known suppressant to the immune system. It cannot be repeated too many times!
Instead, make foods at home instead of buying pre-made items that already contain sugar. Use healthier sweeteners like medjool dates, unsweetened apple sauce, and bananas. Dark organic maple syrup would also be a preferred alternative for white and brown sugar.
Try one of our power packed bowls for a healthy sweet alternative!
Wishing you all the best for a healthy season ahead.