Flu season has well and truly arrived and we're all doing our level best to avoid it. We talk to Geeta Sidhu-Robb, nutritionist and founder of Nosh Detox about building an immune-boosting diet into our everyday routine to help save ourselves from the dreaded flu...
Turmeric may be the one of the most effective nutritional supplement in existence, having immense major benefits for your body and brain. Turmeric is found to fight infection and inflammation by preventing damage caused by free radicals (atom with unpaired electron – introduced from outside e.g. from tobacco smoke, toxins, or pollutants and that can damage cells). Turmeric is also an important anti-ageing agent as it dramatically increases the antioxidant capacity of the body.
They have antiviral and antibacterial properties to fight infection. Button mushrooms in particular are a great source of vitamin D, which helps to boost your immunity. Mushrooms provide a range of essential nutrients like selenium which is an antioxidant, as well as niacin, potassium copper and phosphorous. Additionally, mushrooms provide protein, Vitamin C and iron. Make sure to boil/cook your mushrooms well to truly enjoy their nutritional benefits as their cell walls are indigestible unless exposed to heat.
Zinc, Selenium and Vitamin D
Add zinc, selenium and Vitamin D to your diet as soon as possible, as they boost immunity. Green, leafy vegetables such as broccoli, kale and spinach are nutrient powerhouses, packed full of disease-fighting Vitamin C and zinc. By steaming them, you help preserve their full nutrient value.
A small handful of almonds will provide you with 50% of your daily Vitamin E. Vitamin E is a powerful anti-oxidant that will help your body to fight infection and ward off unwanted illness. Research has also found that almond skins improve the ability of white blood cells to detect viruses and also increase the body’s capability to prevent viruses from duplicating and spreading.
Garlic is a powerful antiviral and antibacterial. It contains compounds which help fight infection and also increases the rate at which your killer cells are produced. Peel, chop and leave the garlic for around 15 minutes to activate full immune boosting enzymes.
Ginger is anti-bacterial, anti-vital and anti-inflammatory. It is rich in antioxidants which all contributes towards a strong immune system. A good way to incorporate ginger into your diet is by placing a chunk of ginger into hot water with a slice of lemon.
Oats contain beta-glucan, which research shows as stronger than Echinacea. They also contain selenium and zinc which help fight infections. Soak the oats in water or nut milk for at least an hour before eating, for optimal nutrient absorption.
Red Bell Peppers
Citrus fruits are commonly hailed as the food that most effectively boost vitamin C and fight colds. However, scrumptious bell peppers actually contain over three times the Vitamin C of an orange and are far more effective. A large quantity of concentrated vitamin C can be found in the red variety of bell peppers as well as in broccoli and cauliflower which are also particularly high in vitamin C. Red Bell peppers also contain phytochemicals and carotenoids (which gives it the pigment), particularly beta-carotene, which give you with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits.
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