The outbreak of Coronavirus has affected us at a global level. While the government is taking preventive measures, it is essential for us to make efforts and stay protected at an individual level.
The media and our phones are all flooded with hygiene tips like washing hands frequently, using a hand sanitizer, avoid touching our face, avoiding public spaces, etc. However, It is critical to have a healthy and balanced diet especially during this time to ensure our safety from the virus. This is because eating selective food won’t cure the problem. You need to pack your diet with all the essential nutrients to boost your immune system and keep infections at bay.
Scroll down to know about the must-have immunity booster ingredients in your diet.
Immunity Booster Ingredients
Vitamin C rich foods (citrus): Consume lemon, orange, mausambi, grapefruit, etc. every day as they are rich in vitamin C and antioxidants. They also increase the production of White Blood Cells (WBCs) and eventually help in boosting our immune system. Squeeze some lemon juice on your vegetable/dal, make some lemonade or eat the raw whole fruit.
Red bell peppers and Spinach: While red bell peppers contain double the amount of vitamin C as compared to citrus, spinach is a rich source of beta carotene and antioxidants. Both of them are highly nutritious and help in keeping our body healthy.
Brocolli: Packed with vitamins A, C and E, antioxidants and fiber, it should be a must-have in your diet. For best results, consume it as it is or cook it as little as possible so that you do not destroy its nutritive value .
Garlic and onion: The magic ingredient, Garlic possesses immunity-boosting properties and helps fight infections apart from providing flavor to our food. Consume garlic along with onions to fulfill your requirement of antioxidants in your diet.
Ginger: Used both in sweet and savory dishes, this ingredient has anti-inflammatory properties, reduces sore throat and nausea. It has been, since ages the best cure for any infection
Yogurt and fermented foods: They help fight diseases, eventually stimulating the immune system. These probiotic ingredients are not only gut-friendly (a healthy gut contributes to a strong immune system) but also a dish in itself. Add fruits or honey to the yogurt and eat it as a snack when your body craves for something unhealthy. You can also include ‘kimchi’ (Korean dish made from fermented cabbage), ‘miso’ (in the form of soup made by fermenting soybeans with salt), and koji (a type of fungus), etc. in your diet.
Kiwi and berries: The exotic fruit Kiwi, is rich in Vitamin C, boosts WBCs formation and helps fight against infections. Berries being rich in antioxidants are one of the best immunity boosting boosters.
Including spices and herbs in your food, like turmeric, cardamom, cumin, basil, curry leaves, etc. would be a good option as they not only impart good taste to the food, but they also possess various medicinal properties. They also protect us from diseases and keep us healthy.
While we have listed a few ingredients, it is advised to include a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables, rich in
Vitamins and minerals – For providing nourishment and energy to our body and to also keep it healthy. Present in Tomatoes, onion, apple, banana, pumpkin seeds, and sesame seeds.
Zinc- It helps our immune system to fight against infections. Found in dairy products, lentils, nuts and seeds.
Protein- As it is the building block of the body and is required to produce certain hormones and enzymes. Found in nuts, seeds and dairy products.
Antioxidants (Roots)- As they help fight infections. Found in almonds, pistachio, walnuts, sweet potato, carrots.
Carbohydrates– It is the energy provider to our body provided by barley, white rice, soya floor, etc.
Healthy fat- Required by the body for blood clotting, muscle movement and helps in reducing inflammation. It is present olive oil, ghee, etc.
This would be a good time to avoid ordering junk and sugary food. While eating a balanced diet doesn’t guarantee us not catching the virus, however, it’s said, ‘Prevention is better than cure’. Along with the informed choices in diet, you need to exercise regularly, ensure a good sleep pattern, reduce stress, and keep yourself hydrated (drink lots of water and avoid sweetened and carbonated beverages) to sail through this crucial time.