The immune cells of our bodies are engaged in a constant battle to oust the disease causing bacteria and virus from our bodies. When they fail to prevent viral or bacterial attacks, these germs make us sick. A strong immune system is most of the time successful in preventing infections. Proper diet, which includes immunity-building foods, can help to build a strong immune system. Therefore, to prevent colds, coughs and other more serious bug infections you should include immune strengthening foods in your diet.
Immunity building with vitamin A
Vitamin A is necessary for building a strong immune system. Provitamin A, such as beta-carotene, found in red, yellow and orange colored vegetables, is extremely beneficial for our immune systems. This nutrient is necessary for production of immune cells in general and the T-cells in particular. Apricots, carrots, spinach, squash, leafy green vegetables, sweet potatoes are particularly rich in beta-carotene.
Increase vitamin C intake
Vitamin C rich citrus fruits are always recommended to keep infections at bay. Vitamin C acts as an antioxidant. It also stimulates production of the white blood cells, which help to kill the invading germs. It is necessary for building antibodies, such as interferon. Interferon forms a protective coating on the outer surface of the cell, preventing the germs from entering the cell. Besides citrus fruits, green peppers, mangoes, peaches, berries, pineapples and even potatoes are rich in vitamin C.
Vitamin E strengthens immunity
Vitamin E is another immune building nutrient. It stimulates B-cell production. These immune cells produce antibodies necessary for eliminating germs from our bodies. To increase the body’s ability to absorb vitamin E, you should ensure that adequate amount of vitamin C is present in your diet. You will obtain vitamin E from whole grains, nuts and seeds.
Include zinc in your diet
Increased vulnerability to infections might be a sign of zinc deficiency. This trace mineral found in seafood, meat, pumpkin, whole grains, is necessary for building the immune cells.
Spices for healthy immunity
Certain spices, containing immunity-building compounds, should be added to your food. Pepper, cinnamon, cumin, coriander, fennel seeds, turmeric, ginger and garlic are good for the immune system.