Reduce your risk of infectious diseases with these immunity boosting foods

With the novel coronavirus pandemic engulfing the world, there is much fear and anxiety among people about how to protect themselves from the virus. Unfortunately, there is currently neither a vaccine nor a cure for this widespread disease that has claimed over 40,000 lives so far globally.
The silver lining in this dark cloud is the fact that over 1,00,000 people have also recovered from this disease so far, and this number continues to rise. When it comes to combating infectious viral diseases, the strength of your own body’s immune system is often the best bet.

Ever since the outbreak of the virus, there have been a series of claims advocating alternative medicines or herbs as potential cures. However, health experts have debunked the claims of there being any specific medicine or supplement to treat those infected or to be used for prevention. Nonetheless, experts agree that people with a robust immune system have a better chance of beating the disease. This is why it is important to eat immunity boosting foods to stay healthy so that our body has the strength to fight anything that tries to attack it.

One of the best ways to stay healthy is to maintain a nutritious diet which includes immune boosting nutrients. Here are some key foods that play a big role in immunity building:

1) Amaranth
Amaranth is a highly  nutritious and gluten-free grain rich in protein, fibre, micronutrients and antioxidants. It has a high quantity of manganese which is essential for efficient brain function and provides protection from neurological conditions. It also has high phosphorus content which is important for bone health and iron which helps our body produce blood. It is especially known as a good source of health-promoting anti-oxidants which strengthen our immune systems, thereby protecting us against cancer, heart ailments and infectious diseases.

2) Figs

Figs are a good source of potassium and help control our blood pressure. They are also rich in calcium, manganese and dietary fibre, and are an important source of immunity-boosting  Vitamin C and other antioxidants.

3) Amla or Indian Gooseberry
Amla is rich in Vitamin C which boosts the functioning of the body’s immune system, thereby preventing many diseases.  Its diuretic and laxative properties help in detoxification and its antibacterial properties aid in healing ulcers as well as preventing infections. It is also rich in protein, fibre, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals that help ensure a vigorous metabolism and maintain healthy skin.

4) Apples
Apples are a potent source of antioxidants and phytochemicals, and are linked to reducing chances of cancer as well heart disease. This immunity boosting fruit also has prebiotic benefits, i.e. rich in fibre that aid in promoting the build-up of good bacteria in your gut, which are crucial for a healthy immune system. 

5) Nuts and Dry Fruits
Nuts are a rich source of protein which is a key building block for immune cells as well as antibodies. Moreover, the Vitamin E found in nuts helps the immune system fight off invading microorganisms. When mixed with dry fruits, one can have a perfectly balanced meal with just the right amount of protein and sugar.

6) Flax Seeds
Flax seeds have a high amount of omega-3 fatty acids, fibre and plant compounds. They are also a good source of several vitamins and minerals which help in growth and development of various body functions. Moreover, they are the richest dietary source of ‘lignans’ which help reduce blood pressure, oxidative stress and levels of fat and glucose in your blood which in turn decreases the risk of heart disease. Grinding flax seeds is the best way to get all its nutrients as it allows lignans to ferment in your digestive system and reduce the chances of cancer.

By Seema Jindal Jajodia, Founder Nourish Organics

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