Vital nutrients that Boost Immunity
Every kitchen is generally stocked with these super nutrients that help in fighting back the diseases while strengthening our inner defense mechanism. These nutrients and vitamins have miraculous healing powers, and if used correctly may have the ability to restore health in a sick person.
- Vitamin C– Vitamin C happens to be a mighty vitamin, when it comes to boosting immunity and fighting infections. Vitamin C helps in combating germs by increasing the production of white blood cells and antibodies. The levels of the antibody interferon, which is responsible for preventing the entry of germs in the body is enhanced by consuming optimum levels of Vitamin C. An approximate dose of 200-250mg of Vitamin C per day is good enough to prevent recurrent diseases. However, if you smoke, then getting an increased amount of vitamin C becomes especially important as smoking not only increases the risk of catching a cold but also steps up the body’s need for this protective vitamin. It is advisable to add vitamin C rich food sources in the diet in intervals rather all together as excess vitamin C usually gets excreted in the urine.
- Vitamin E- This is yet another super nutrient, armed with an ability to keep diseases away. The vitamin E helps by initiating the production of flu fighting B cells which produce antibodies to destroy the germ. An optimum supplementation of vitamin E through diet and medicines is also essential to delay the risk of reduced immunity, usually witnessed in aged people. Around 150-300mg of Vitamin E is needed by a healthy non smoking individual to reap the disease fighting properties. Good sources include nuts (almonds and walnut), seeds like sunflower seeds and whole grains.
- Vitamin A or Carotenoids– Being a powerful antioxidant, Vitamin A helps in clearing the body of the excess toxins and free radicals. It also fights by increasing the levels of infection fighting and helper T cells, releasing macrophages that kill cancer cells and natural killer cells that attack virus. The best way to add carotenoids in the diet is through natural sources like fresh, brightly colored fruits and vegetables.
- Essential fatty acids-The heart friendly omega 3 fatty acids happen to be also the body’s savior against cold and flu. The anti inflammatory and antioxidant attributes of these fatty acids present in oils like olive oil and seeds like flax seeds ensure that a steady level of phagocytes or the bacteria eating white blood cells are maintained in the body. Research has clearly pointed out that adding essential fatty acids in our daily diet helps to reduce the severity of respiratory disorders and also in keeping our heart and body always in pink of health.
- Zinc and Selenium– Furthermore, the minerals of zinc and selenium have also been studied to improve immunity levels. These are foods like whole grain cereals like bajra, jowar, wheat bran, wheat germ, all shellfish, peanuts, most lentils, skimmed milk, peanuts, pumpkin seeds, watermelon seeds, spinach etc. These minerals mobilize the infection fighting antibodies and improve body’s resistance power.