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4 Simple Foods To Boost Your Immune System

strengthen immune system

Our immune systems are one of the most crucial parts of our body, helping to protect the body against all sorts of bacteria (not good bacteria), viruses and parasites that cause infections, illness and disease. The best thing we can do is to strengthen our immune system as much as possible through our diet, so it is ready when we need it. 

Whether you are looking to strengthen your immune system ready for winter, you generally want to get healthier or you are preparing to help your body recover from surgery, incorporate these foods into your diet and you should notice a difference!

Citrus Fruits

The first food on our list is citrus fruits, which are renowned for being high in vitamin C, an essential nutrient that helps our immune system. It does this by encouraging the body to produce white blood cells, which are key in helping the body to fight infections. 

There are so many easy ways to incorporate more citrus fruits into our diet, such as simply eating oranges or adding lemon to your drinking water. However, a more interesting way to eat more citrus is to make a grapefruit salad! Cut up two pink grapefruits, a medium shallot, 2 avocados and a handful of coriander. Add this to a bowl along with a teaspoon of white wine vinegar, 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper. This makes a delicious side dish or a lovely lunch to give your immune system a great boost without it being boring. 

Broccoli

Broccoli is another great food for your immune system, as one cup has just as much vitamin C as an orange, along with plenty more nutrients that are vital for our immune system to function to the best of its ability. Broccoli is high in potassium, magnesium, zinc and iron, as well as different B vitamins. All of these are powerful nutrients that have undeniable benefits for the body overall, as well as the immune system. 

Steaming broccoli rather than boiling it will help to retain as many important nutrients as possible. If you aren’t a big fan of broccoli, try making it into a gratin with cheese sauce and breadcrumbs! You will be getting all the nutrients you need as well as a delicious meal. 

Garlic

Another simple food to incorporate into your diet is garlic! Garlic contains a compound called alliin which helps the immune system by boosting the disease-fighting response of some types of white blood cells when they encounter viruses. The high sulfur content of garlic also helps to explain its benefits in fighting off cold and flu. 

Chop up a few bulbs of garlic and add it to sauces, pasta, salads, anything you want really! If you’re a real garlic lover, add garlic to butter with parsley and make some delicious homemade garlic bread. 

Turmeric
Turmeric has been used for centuries as a result of the medicinal properties it is thought to have, particularly its ability to naturally strengthen the immune system. Curcumin is a property found within turmeric, known to have anti-inflammatory properties that assist the immune system. Anti-inflammatory foods are particularly important following surgery, whether you have had knee surgery or a mummy makeover! Always follow the advice of your doctor first and foremost, but for the most part, anti-inflammatory foods that are easy to digest will be suggested.