Focus on eating whole foods (foods as close to their natural state as possible), particularly fresh and raw vegetables. Fruits and Vegetables: Eat at least 5 to 7 servings (1 serving = approximately 100 grams) of fruits and vegetables per day. Besides being a storehouse of vitamins and minerals, fruits and vegetables also provide fibre (prebiotics) and protective plant chemicals called phytochemicals. Leafy green vegetables are an amazing source of easily absorbed plant protein, essential minerals and vitamins like magnesium, iron, calcium and potassium, vitamins A, E, K and C, and many of the B vitamins. They are also full of antioxidants. This makes leafy greens incredible detoxifiers, blood cleaners and immunity builders. Aim to include these in your meals every other day as salads, saag preparations, in the form of chutney, or simply added to the chapati dough. Add fresh herbs to your dishes to improve flavour and variety. Tea: Research has shown that people who drink five cups of black tea a day for two weeks can better resist cold and flu viruses. Green tea is believed to be just as effective. Chicken soup: The healing benefits of chicken soup may not be just old wives’ tales. A research study claims that chicken soup has an amino acid called cysteine which blocks the movement of inflammatory cells. The salty broth keeps the mucus thin, while garlic and onions, which are ingredients, are believed to increase the body’s immune-boosting ability. Chicken soup has acquired the status of being the best home remedy for colds and flu in many countries of the world. Yogurt/Curd: This is a source of probiotics. These can keep the intestinal tract free of germs that cause diseases. A study found that a bowl of yogurt a day was good for improving the gut flora. However, the curd we normally set at home may not have enough of the good bacteria to actually provide most of the health benefits attributed to probiotics. Another study found that daily supplements of probiotics stimulated the immune system, resulting in fewer sick days among workers. In addition to medicinal formulations, several probiotic foods are now readily available as beverages and plain/flavoured yoghurt. Garlic: There is some evidence that garlic can help increase resistance to colds, reduce the risk of colorectal and stomach cancers, and lower the blood pressure as well as serum cholesterol. The suggested intake, though not absolutely proven, is two raw cloves a day, plus garlic added to cooked foods several times a week.
What’s Your Lifestyle?
Simply following a healthy lifestyle is the best step you can take towards keeping your immune system strong. Every part of your body, including your immune system, functions better when protected from environmental assaults and is bolstered by healthy-living strategies.
Your immunity can be affected by negative or heavy stress. Breathing deeply calms your mind and