Our ability to interact with the world constantly depends a lot on our immune system. Pathogenic bacteria, viruses, and various invaders are tackled by our immune system on a regular basis. A strong immune system not only fights the foreign invaders but also fights cells within our body that turn cancerous and are harmful to us. A recent study on immunity shows that weaker immunity may be associated with poor nutrition. Poor nutrition not only leads to a risk of higher infection levels but also reduces the rate of healing from injuries and infections. Science has shown that as we get older, our immunity weakens.
Healthy eating can help us maintain a healthy and strong immune system. Nutrient-rich foods support the optimal functionality of our immune system.
Let’s understand our immune system in short before indulging ourselves in a healthy diet regime.
Our immune system is like a fine-tuned circuit that defends our body from the world around us. Like a complex circuit, our immune system consists of various parts that work in unison with each other with the ultimate goal of protecting our body from foreign invaders. Like in a circuit various parts are active when they have a functionality associated with them and pack up once they have finished their function. So our immune system consists of two main parts; immune cells and messenger molecules. One builds strong immunity and the other controls the functionality of the cells.
Varied cells are a neighborhood of our immune system. The circuit of the immune system consists of Lymphocytes (T-cells) that directly fight the invading molecules. The circuit also consists of B-cells which respond to toxins or invading molecules in the form of antibodies. These antibodies help in the removal of the pathogen by the other immune cells by binding to the surface of a potentially harmful molecule or a cell. Our body consists of phagocytic cells like macrophages and neutrophils that help the immune system to remove the debris from the site of infection.
The cells of our immune system circulate in our bloodstream or in the lymph nodes which are present throughout our body. Because of their positioning, the immune cells can be called upon quickly to the site of infection. Apart from the immune cells, our body relies on specific structures in our bodies that form the foundation of our defense system against foreign invasion. This includes our skin and our gastrointestinal tract. These contain signaling molecules like soluble factors and cytokines which activate the immune system when needed.
To make sure that the entire complex circuit of your immune system works; we need to support it with proper nutrition. Good immunity can help us protect our body from allergies, a seasonal illness like flu, abnormal cell growth and sometimes even the development of cancer.
Now that we have an overview of our immune system let’s discuss how we can build a strong immune system with the help of nutritious food.
To build a strong immunity make sure to include the following in our Diet
The Powerful Vitamin E
Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant and neutralizes free radicals. An essential component of cell membranes of T-cell and B-cell is essential for their healthy functioning. Lack of vitamin E shows a depressed response time of the T-cells and B-Cells and shows the development of tumors in various animal models. We can include vitamin E in our diet by consuming sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, spinach, hazelnuts, peanut butter, almonds, and fortified cereals. True Elements Antioxidant Mix is a perfect pack of roasted seed mix to fulfill the vitamin E needs in our body.
Zinc, a potential immunostimulant has received a lot of attention as it possesses the ability to support our immune functions. The deficiency of zinc can impair T-cell functions. Zinc can be naturally obtained from sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, spinach, quinoa, mushrooms, lentils, asparagus, and cashews. To have a balanced diet with nutritional values in a single meal, so Multigrain Oatmeal can be the best option for your busy schedule.
Bring Protein on the table!
Lack of protein intake hampers the body’s mechanism of producing antibodies and thereby compromising its safety. A diet that promotes a strong immune system should comprise of food that provides us with high quality, complete protein. Such can be found in fish, eggs, and shellfish. Vegetarians can opt for pulses, seeds, unsalted nuts, and soy products. You can try Chatpati Protein Muesli for your taste craving with the health supplements of protein.
The Best of Vitamin A
Vitamin A helps in regulating our immunity by safeguarding our mouth, stomach, intestines, our skin and tissues in our respiratory system by protecting them from catching infections. Improper T-cell activity is noticed due to deficiency of vitamin A. Vitamin A can be obtained from various foods such as spinach, red bell peppers, sweet potatoes, carrots, apricots and kale being some of them. Goji Berries are one of the best sources of vitamin A. It is easy to consume anytime, anywhere just like a snack.
Vitamin C on its Rescue!
There is a lot of research done in understanding the relation between vitamin C and the immune system. Vitamin C acts as an immune-stimulant where it supports healthy T-cell functions, promotes phagocytic cell functions and decreases the severity of symptoms associated with respiratory viral infections. Vitamin C also supports healing at sites of inflammation due to its antioxidant activity. Certain vegetables are an excellent source of vitamin C such as asparagus, broccoli, and kale. Citrus fruits like oranges and sweet lime are also an excellent source of vitamin C. Dried Blueberries are mostly used to boost vitamin C levels in our body.
Other nutrients like folate, iron, vitamin B6, selenium as well as prebiotics and probiotics influence the immune response. We can obtain these nutrients by eating a balanced diet.
4 Steps For A Stronger Immunity
- Take care of the physical barriers of our body like the skin and the gastrointestinal tract.
- Have a balanced diet consisting of macro and micronutrients like Fruits and Greens.
- Consume adequate amounts of healthy fats and proteins.
- Avoid intake of foods that have potential allergens, toxins or preservatives and additives.