With many countries still under lockdown measures, it’s more important than ever before that we keep ourselves safe and healthy. One of the most recommended ways to achieve this is by giving our immune system a little boost. Caring for our immune system is especially important for those of us who aren’t getting our normal dose of the ‘sunshine’ Vitamin D. One way that we can ensure that we are caring for our inner body and that is through eating the recommended foods for a healthy immune.
How is this possible? As my mother always used to say “you are what you eat”. Even if I haven’t transformed into a walking M&M as of yet, it is an important piece of advice, as one of the key ways to keep healthy living and that is through your daily diet.
Within this blog, we will be sharing the recommended 10 foods for a healthy immune and the benefits of essential vitamins that should be part of your daily diet.
Keep reading and discover how you too can care for your immune system throughout lockdown.
Top 10 foods for a healthy immune
Packed full of vital Vitamin C, B and E it is clear why avocados are a firm favourite around the world. Studies have suggested that avocados can help increase energy and work to reduce body weight. This is possible due to the included natural fats which help to keep us feeling fuller for longer.
Never before has there been a perfect excuse to plaster images of your smashed avocado on toast across social media.
2- Citrus Fruits
A long hailed source of Vitamin C and recommenced by sailors as a cure against scurvy, be sure to stock up on citrus fruits throughout the coronavirus lockdown for a healthy immune.
There are plenty of fruits that fall into the citrus family, whether it is: grapefruit, oranges, tangerines, clementines, lemons and limes, feel free to get experimental with these versatile ingredients, perfect for adding to a range of dishes.
Watch out for ye olde Blackbeard down the local fresh fruit isle!
Longstanding super vegetable, broccoli contains Vitamins A, C and E. Adding this ingredient to your meal is one of the easiest ways to get your daily intake and boost your immune system. Helping to keep the virus at bay.
If broccoli isn’t your favourite vegetable why not check out the next ingredient in our list that is equally an impressive food for a healthy immune.
Rich in both Vitamin C and A, its numerous antioxidants and beta carotene can help the immune system to fight off nasty infections.
Spinach is also believed to have inflammatory properties, important for protecting our ever important eyesight and preventing macular degeneration in our later years.
For those not keen on the ideas of adding spinach to their diet, consider blending spinach with berries to create a delicious fruity shake to get you up and going in the morning.
5- Gogi Berries
Believed within Ancient China to have possessed medicinal properties, the popularity of Gogi Berries is still high. This is due to this food for a healthy immune containing vital vitamins that can help treat and protect the eye, liver and kidney.
High in antioxidants, zinc, iron, Vitamin C and A, Gogi berries are proven to help improve the immune systems response and can work to give your body an extra boost while we continue our second month of lockdown.
With some claiming that just a handful of nuts a day can increase life longevity, almonds have earned themselves the title of best snack choice.
If you are wanting to spice up your daily dinners, considering scattering thinly chopped almond nuts across your salad or homemade curry. Almonds also make a fantastic alternative for those looking to create meat free dishes and reduce their meat intake.
Containing much needed omega-3 which is crucial in assisting both the brain and body to function to the fullest. Fish such as salmon and herring are also a great source of Vitamin D, perfect for those of us who aren’t getting the recommended 8-15 minutes of sunshine a day.
Whether served up for breakfast, a light lunch, or perhaps oven baked for dinner, fish can be incorporated within any meal and can keep not just your immune system, but also your hair and skin looking radiant throughout this tough time.
Known for its high protein content, chicken is also recommended for its ability to boost immune cells in the body and help fight off cold and flu.
Often referred to as a lean meat, chicken also contributes to a healthy weight compared to red meats such as beef or pork which contain higher levels of saturated fats.
A staple within many of our diets, when it comes to chicken, the options and different ways that you can serve up this food for a healthy immune is endless.
As a rich source of protein and calcium, yogurt can help enhance and support healthy gut bacteria. Hailed for its ability to aid digestion and to maintain teeth and bones, get the day started off on the right foot and enjoy a fruity pot of your favourite yogurt.
Non-dairy yogurts are available for those who do not consume dairy or animal products and can offer the same nutritional values as their counterparts.
Whether your preference is white, green, black or my personal favourite Oolong tea, scientists have suggested that tea can reduce the risk of heart disease and improve blood flow around the body.
Vital vitamins for a healthy immune system?
Vitamin A not only helps the body immune system to function, but also works to maintain healthy teeth, bones and skin.
As the human body is unable to produce this vitamin, it is important we get our intake from cod liver oils and other fish oils which are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids. Vitamin A can also be found in root vegetables such as sweet potato and carrots.
Vitamin B can be found in many different groups of the food wheel, making this vitamin highly accessible.
Key foods are brown rice, barley, beans and lentils. Meats including red meat, chicken and fish. Eggs and dairy products, dark green leafy vegetables such as broccoli and spinach.
For a heavy snack to enhance your Vitamin B intake, why not try seeds and nuts. If that doesn’t take your fancy, fruits such as avocado, lemons, oranges and even bananas are high in vitamins (all hail the banana bread).
Deemed essential, Vitamins C is recognised as an antioxidant, which has healing effects on your immune system, skin, bones, teeth and small blood vessels.
Fruits and berries serve as the highest source of Vitamin C, most famous of all are citrus fruits commended by sailors spending many months at sea.
Vitamin E can help protect tissues and organs against substances called free radicals, as well as keeping the immune system strong against bacteria and viruses.
Foods rich in the vitamin include a variety of nuts, wheat germ and avocado.
When it comes to staying healthy throughout the coronavirus lockdown, incorporating foods for a healthy immune into your diet is recommended. Along with ensuring that you are maintaining a healthy diet, by eating the right ingredients stuffed full of vital vitamins, you can keep your body optimised and healthy, able to fight and stand up against any viruses that it may encounter.
Along with eating a healthy diet to keep your body harmonised, another top tip to keep your immune system healthy and that is through exercise.
Exercise is another pillar of healthy living, not only does it help lower blood pressure but can contribute to overall good health. Perhaps now is the time to take up yoga. Incorporating foods for a healthy immune with much needed self-care and you can feel confident that you can emerge from this period of lockdown, a healthier and happier you.
We would love to hear from you and discover what delicious dishes and recipes you have been cooking up throughout lockdown and which ingredients you swear by that are contributing to a healthier and happier immune system.
Comment below and share your experience today.
Amber Johnson is from the bustling city of Brighton and is an experienced copywriter and PPC executive. With a passion for healthy living and the latest digital marketing trends, Amber can typically be found managing client activities across Google applications and social media platforms.