All of us are obsessed to live a healthy life free from falling sick. Especially in the current situation each one of us have to protect ourselves from getting affected by covid19. Cold, flu and other diseases occur only when our body’s immune system gets weakened. If your immune system is healthy enough then your own body can protect you from the invading microbes and you neither have to go to a physician nor take medication. Here I am gonna discuss some of the ways in which you can increase your immunity.
Nutrition – First let’s start off with nutrients that enhances immune system. Nutrients like vitamin A, B6, B12, C, D, zinc, selenium and iron helps to increase immunity. So your daily diet must contain foods that are rich in these nutrients.To know more about vitamins in detail and it’s food sources you can refer my previous posts https://nutridietary.health.blog/2020/08/29/know-your-nutrients-part-1-fat-soluble-vitamins/ and https://nutridietary.health.blog/2020/09/05/know-your-nutrients-part-2-water-soluble-vitamins/
Minerals like zinc, selenium and iron are important to keep your immune system stronger. Try to incorporate anyone of the best food source of these minerals in your diet. Here is list of the foods which are rich in these minerals.
Zinc – meat, legumes like chickpeas, beans, lentils, etc, nuts and seeds like hemp, pumpkin, sesame seeds, etc, egg, dairy products and certain vegetables like potatoes.
Selenium – nuts like Brazil and cashew, eggs, dairy products, fish, chicken, legumes, brown rice, fruits like banana.
Iron – Liver and other organ meats, seafoods, tofu, beans, quinoa, spinach, broccoli, peas, beetroot, green leafy vegetables, strawberries, pomegranates, apple, watermelon, banana, pumpkin seeds, dates, raisins, dried apricots.
Most of you might be aware about the micronutrients which help to boost our immunity, but more than these micronutrients protein plays the major role. All the tissues and organs are made up of protein and so the immune system. Protein is like the engine and micronutrients are like the fuel, without engine there would be no use for fuel. Similarly, if the body has sufficient amount of these micronutrients but if it lacks protein, then there would be no effect of these nutrients on immunity. This makes protein to play an important role in immune function. To know about the foods which are good sources of protein you can refer my previous post https://nutridietary.health.blog/2020/08/22/a-guide-on-what-should-you-eat-for-a-healthy-living/
Probiotics and prebiotics – 70-80% of immune tissue are found in our gut. This makes our immunity to be strongly dependent on digestive system. When you maintain a good gut then the chances for microbes from food or water to latch on is less. Probiotics are good bacteria and prebiotics are foods that help in the growth of good bacteria. They both helps in maintaining the health of the gut. Curd, buttermilk, cheese, pickles, kimchi (fermented vegetables) are the best natural probiotic foods. Natural prebiotic foods include fibre rich fruits and vegetables among which apple, banana, garlic and onion are the best source and also barley, oats, flax seed and wheat bran.
Fruits and vegetables – Fruits and vegetables are a good source of immunonutrients like vitamin C, vitamin A and vitamin E. As discussed earlier these are the important nutrients which help to boost immunity. Apart from immunonutrients, fruits and vegetables are also rich in antioxidant. Increasing antioxidant in diet can help suppress and fight viruses along with inflammation and bacteria. Studies have found that consuming 5-6 fruits and vegetables a day can significantly increase the antibody response. Eating colourful fruits and vegetables keeps the doctor away.
Water – Not only nutrients but also water has major role in our defense system. It’s necessary to stay hydrated because vitamin C and B needs water for it’s metabolism and also water is needed for the production of lymph which carries WBC. Water recommendation depends on the activity level and humidity in which the person lives. To stay hydrated you need to take a minimum of 2-3 litres of water per day.
Sleep – I don’t know how many of you are aware that most important functions in our body takes place only during the time you sleep. Most of the hormones and the substances that help to fight against infections are secreted during this sleep period. Body repairs all the wear and tear tissues during the sleep period and prepares the body for the next day activity. Hence it is necessary to have a enough and sound sleep without any disturbances for atleast 7-8 hrs.
To boost your immunity it is important to give equal importance to diet, water, sleep and also exercise. Everything should go hand in hand. When you choose your food make sure that it is not only tasty but also it has multiple nutrients in it. Whenever possible drink water don’t wait for the body to give you signals like dry lips and throat. Get enough sleep. For that it doesn’t mean that you can go to bed by 1 am and sleep for 8 hrs. For a healthy living you have to sleep early around 9 -10pm. As the proverb says, ‘Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy’. And last but not the least, make time to move your body actively for atleast 30mins a day.
Guys, I guess this info would be useful for you to boost your immunity and stay healthy. Follow these simple ideas and prepare your body to fight against the virus. Please leave your feedback in the comment section and also I would like to hear your suggestion on what topic to be discussed in my blog.
Eat healthy to live healthy!!!!!