How to Boost Your Immune System: Eat These 20 Superfoods

Prevention is better than cure. Here's how to boost your immune system: eat immune system boosting foods that make your body stronger and more resistant.

The immune system is a rather complex system of biological structures that do a remarkable job of defending us against disease causing micro-organisms. There are times, however, that it fails, and germs invade and successfully make us sick.

While there are different medications that you can use when you get sick, it still makes much more sense to keep your immune system strong as a precautionary measure. You can actually intervene and boost your immune system by improving your diet and taking the right supplements.

Here’s how to boost your immune system with twenty of the most efficient foods and supplements.

#1 Avocados

ripe avocado cut in half on a wooden table 2

Avocados are excellent additions to your diet because they contain antioxidants, essential amino acids and healthy fats that balance hormone production and support adrenal gland function.

#2 Chlorella

Chlorella may be a single cell algae but is an efficient detoxifier that binds to toxins and flush them out of the body. Chlorophyll in chlorella helps to cleanse your blood and promote cellular and tissue repair.

#3 Citrus Fruits

Citrus fruits provide you with hefty doses of Vitamin C, which reduce cold symptoms and boost your general wellness.

#4 Cloves

Small bowl with Cloves

Cloves have the highest antioxidant capacity among all other immune system boosters with an oxygen radical absorbance capability (ORAC) of 314,446. It also contains eugenol which is a mild anesthetic and anti-inflammatory and is useful for sore throats and toothaches.

#5 Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is a rich source of lauric acid, which the body converts into monolaurin. Lauric acid is known to enhance immunity by disrupting lipid membranes of harmful micro-organisms. Virgin coconut oil is your best option when selecting coconut oils.

#6 Cruciferous Veggies

Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, kale and lettuce detoxify your liver and help you flush out toxins from your body.

#7 Fermented Foods

Dairy products on wooden table

Fermented foods are essential for immune system boosting, because they contain powerful and friendly bacteria that balance your “inner ecosystem.” Some examples of fermented foods are kefir, tempeh, yogurt, kimchee, miso and pickles.

#8 Garlic

Garlic has infection fighting capabilities, and has been seen to work against virus, bacteria and fungi.

#9 Ginger

Ginger warm the body and opens up your sinuses and lungs, allowing for proper circulation. It also prevents accumulation of toxins to reduce the risk of infection.

#10 Green Tea

cup of green tea and lemon on rustic wooden table

Green teas are rich in catechins, which are polyphenols. This drink is known for its rich content of epigallocatechin (EGCG), an antioxidant more potent than Vitamin E or C.

#11 Mushrooms

Mushrooms are high in protein, calcium, Vitamins C and B and fiber. They also contain beta-glucans, which are powerful compounds that modulate and activate the immune system. Maitake, Reishi and Shiitake mushrooms are medicinal mushrooms and are often sold as supplements.

#12 Peaches

Fresh peaches are not only tasty, but also have a very high ORAC score of 1,814. Be wary about canned products because they lose about 75% of antioxidants in the canning process.

#13 Pomegranate

glass of pomegranate juice

Pomegranate juice contains ellagic and punic acid which fights free radical damage, and preserves cells and collagen in the skin.

#14 Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds have high magnesium content and are great for lowering blood pressure. It is also rich in zinc, which is a powerful immune system boosting mineral.

#15 Propolis

Made from bee resin, propolis contains a wide spectrum of antimicrobial compounds. It is also an excellent source of apigenin and caffeic acid, which are two very important phenolic compounds that boost immune system health.

#16 Raspberries and Blueberries

fresh blueberries and raspberries

These two berries have high antioxidant capacities in comparison to other vegetables and fruits. These berries also contain powerful phytochemicals that promote cellular function, and have lower sugar content than other fruits.

#17 Raw Organic Milk

Raw milk from organically raised and grass fed cows contain good bacteria that boost the immune system and lower the risk of allergies. It is also a great source of enzymes, minerals and vitamins, especially Vitamin A.

#18 Spirulina

Spirulina is another blue-green algae that is rich in selenium and iron. It stimulates the immune system, replenishes RNA in the brain and improves mental performance.

#19 Turmeric

Turmeric 5

High in the ORAC table sits the immune system boosting spice Turmeric. This is high in antioxidants and is five times stronger than Vitamins C and E.

#20 Whey Protein

Whey protein is a good alternative if you do not have access to raw milk, and gives you similar benefits. It contains immunoglobulins and beta glucans, which are helpful if you’re trying to flight off colds and the flu.

You don’t have to search far and wide to keep yourself healthy. Boost your immune system by adding these superfoods to your regular diet. Your body will definitely thank you for it.

About the author

Justine R

On an eternal quest for happiness, Justine tries to lead a positive lifestyle by giving back to the universe and following natural approaches to parenting, health, food and beauty. When she's not on the beach, she keeps herself fit (and sane) by running and doing yoga.

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