The onset of winter seems to bring with it the thought of runny noses, tissue boxes, and sick days in bed. To help support your health over the colder months,…
The onset of winter seems to bring with it the thought of runny noses, tissue boxes, and sick days in bed. To help support your health over the colder months, we’ve rounded up our favourite immunity boosting foods to give your immune system a gentle nudge.
Turmeric’s active ingredient curcumin is a potent antifungal and antiviral, and aids in promoting a healthy immune system. To aid absorption, mix turmeric with black pepper; we love it whisked with coconut milk as a golden latte.
Zinc plays a key role in T cell activation, making it an essential mineral for a healthy immune system as T cells are necessary for fighting off viral infections (like colds!). Lentils are a great source of zinc; we love them in our soups and curries!
We’ve chatted about the amazing stress relieving and mood boosting benefits of adaptogens before, but did you know they can also strengthen the immune system? Chaga is a functional mushroom with some pretty impressive benefits; it’s one of the best antioxidant sources in the world, and stimulates immune cell production, improving immune system function. Try mixing chaga powder into your coffee or golden latte.
Ginger is a powerful anti-inflammatory and antibacterial, helping to combat the common cold or flu. Inflammation can negatively affect your body’s immune response, making anti-inflammatory ginger a great way to boost your immunity. Try fresh ginger root boiled as a tea with a slice of lemon.
Sweet and tart elderberry has been used to fight colds and the flu for centuries due to its virus fighting, anti-inflammatory, and immune system stimulating potential. Try a (sugar free) elderberry syrup from the health food store drizzled over coconut yogurt or your morning Mystic Black Rice Pudding, or boiled as a fruity tea.
A powerful antiviral, garlic is hands down one of the best foods to enhance your immunity. A potent source of allicin, garlic also acts as nature’s antibiotic against bacteria, viruses, and fungal infections. For the fullest health benefits, garlic is best slightly smashed and consumed raw (great for your immune system, though be sure to rinse if you’re planning on kissing anyone that day!) if you can stomach it. Otherwise, we love adding cooked garlic to our stir-fries, curries, and soups!
By now we know that green tea is loaded with beneficial antioxidants. However, our old mate black tea also contains immune enhancing properties (or properTEAS); both green and black tea are good sources of the amino acid L-theanine, which can aid in the production of virus fighting compounds and regulate the immune system.
Loaded with vitamins A, C, and E, broccoli is a perfect immune boosting food. Also, sulforaphane, a chemical found in broccoli, may aid in activating free radical-fighting enzymes and antioxidants in our immune cells.
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