Updated: Jun 17, 2020
Immune System Booster
There seems to be a mass number of people who are doubly interested in their hygiene these days. A consistent need to wash hands avoid human contact seems to be the viral sensation right now. Could it be hysteria or necessary precaution?
It’s definitely a time to be more cautious when it comes to sanitation and cleanliness, but when it comes to your health, boosting your immune system is always a good thing.
So what steps can you take to boost your immune system?
One big step is to exercise. Not getting enough exercise can lead to weight gain and over-eating because you’re not getting enough activity. Idle hands make an unhealthy body.
Look out of our next article on exercise.
In addition to exercise and making sure you’re getting enough activity, there are several foods that can help you fight off those *#$@ diseases.
Technically, boosting your immune system beyond its normal capacity isn’t possible yet. What we can do is strengthen it, keep it working optimally, and reduce factors that can weaken it. By doing this, the immune system becomes a force
Do you remember science class? Me neither, but what I do know is the immune system. Summarized, it’s a system of plentiful cells, mainly white leukocytes, that fight off bad cells that make us sick once they overrun the leukocytes. The good cells can recognize the bad ones like infection because of their abnormality, then try to respond by a variety of means to block them from spreading. This is why we sneeze, cough, have runny noses, etc. The body tries to expel the bad cells they deem harmful. That’s why we need to keep them operating efficiently.
There isn’t one specific food that will boost your immune system, but there are a variety of nutrients, vitamins, and compounds that are proven to have positive health effects. They are mostly common ingredients, readily available, and should be part of our daily intake.
Citrus (i.e. Vitamin C)
When you think of fighting off the common cold and winter flu, the first thing most people think of is Vitamin C. Orange juice is the main thought here, but other forms include lemons, grapefruits, and limes. They all have citrus goodies in them and have the necessary amount of Vitamin C we need to keep defender cells reinforced. A lack of Vitamin C can actually cause sickness including degenerative diseases and possibly scurvy. However, this is not typical since most people get enough Vitamin C in their diets. The vitamin is one of the essential vitamins, which means it’s not produced naturally by the body, so it needs to be taken either through food or supplements.
Big blue. These berries are synonymous with health. Everyone knows they are packed with antioxidant’s but how many actually know what that means? There is a compound found in blueberries called pterostilbene, which is a main compound found in small berries; especially blueberries. This nutrient works in synergy with other vitamins to enhance the immune system’s response time. They also work by aiding in eliminating free radicals, in which cause sickness. Free radicals are like the cartoon Tasmanian Devil; wild and unpredictable. These cells can contribute to breaking down healthy cells, which leads to premature aging, skin problems, and some diseases. Antioxidants grab those free radicals and pulverizes them into oblivion, thus helping to reduce the negative affects they cause. In addition, blueberries have a small amount of resveratrol in them which is known to positively affect the immune system and the heart. Red grapes have the most amount, which is why some suggest wine is a heart healthy choice.
Crunchy goodness. Great in protein shakes, yogurt, or a raw snack. One of the best facts about almonds is that they are universally accepted as the healthiest nut of them all (this is currently being contested by my personal trainer cousin cousin Tony!). They are loaded in good fats, which helps to control cholesterol, clogged arteries, and blood pressure, and they are packed with Vitamin E. Vitamin E is another essential vitamin that has similar cellular properties to Vitamin C. Not many people talk about this, but half a cup provides about 100% your daily requirement of Vitamin E. The only downfall with almonds is that they are high in calories, so too many may exceed your macros if you’re calorie counting. In limited amounts, almonds can have multiple health benefits, so choose them when going nut shopping.
The tea of champions! When thinking of healthy teas, green is most likely the first one that comes to mind. This is true for a reason. Green tea provides naturally occurring caffeine in a moderate amount, which makes it perfect for a morning drink or healthy pick me up. For other health reasons, green tea has immune strengthening properties. The tea has been scientifically proven to have antioxidant and immunomodulatory elements. These act in enhancing the body’s natural defense against viruses. Also, medical studies are still being performed on this, but several suggest green tea helps to lessen the chance of contracting some cancers. They theorize the catechins in green tea use their antioxidant abilities to help destroy cancer reproducing cells. This is one of the foreseeable better benefits of green tea, but for now, we primarily know that green tea positively affects the immune system because of the polyphenols that are uniquely abundant in the tea.
He who controls the spice, controls the Universe!
The brown, yellowish spice that has a great taste when added to many dinner dishes is at the top of the spice list. Turmeric has a helix like ability to modulate the immune system, which in turn, has a high immunomodulating enhancing ability. This process builds up the white blood cells, which helps in destroying bad cells that cause sickness. Turmeric is one of the few spices that have this ability, and it also has been proven to aid the immune system in preventing other problems such as inflammation, arthritis, lactic acid build-up during exercise, asthma, heart disease, and Alzheimer's disease.
Another popular spice that goes well with many foods and drinks. Related to turmeric, the positive effects of ginger are many. Besides making the taste buds dance, it is one of the oldest used spices to fight off colds, and has remained a staple in many cultures diet for thousands of years. Back during the sword and armor days, Indonesian troops would use ginger to try and heal their wounds. This might’ve been effective, but science found that ginger works best when consumed. Ginger works well in creating a positive environment for the immune system. A great drink to really help the immune system is ginger, lemon, and green tea.
It’s common to think you are not getting enough of the essential vitamins and nutrients that promote good health. If you have a lot of variety in your diet which include poultry, fruit, cruciferous vegetables, and plenty of water, then you most likely are getting enough. But many people do not have full meals because of lack of time or not knowing the proper synergy of foods which lacks the adequate combination. That means they’re more susceptible to a lack of efficient vitamins that promote a fortified immune system. This is where supplements come in handy. There are numerous supplements that are available to help increase your daily requirement.
I recommended supplementing with alphabet vitamins if you feel you need a boost in the energy department. Remember to stick to moderation. Too many vitamins aren’t harmful unless taken in extreme excess. If you take in more than the body uses, the excess will just be urinated out. The best choices for the immune system are as follows:
Best Vitamins to Supplement
I recommend these supplements because they have the highest amount of research performed on them, and all have a universal positive response in aiding the body to fight off disease. A multivitamin is good too, but if you want to be specific in focusing on strengthening the immune system, you will need to target in on the vitamins you take. Dosage depends on body type, so it's best to follow the recommended amount on the back of the label.
I order 90% of my vitamins from Puritan's Pride. I like them because the supplements are made in the USA and are inspected by the USDA, so I know they are top quality. I've ordered from the company for years, and never had a bad product. I included a link to the recommended products. There is most likely a sale going on (they always have good sales :)
It may be a little harder finding some supplements because of limited stock, but there should be variations with different potency options. They are all good options, as long as they
You can find the complete immune system package by clicking the picture below.
If you are not getting your recommended daily requirement and calories in proper proportion, then supplementing is a good idea. This way you can be sure you are doing your part in staying healthy and fighting off disease.