FOOD: 10 Immune System Boosting Food

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

GM !

Before heading to Miami at the beginning of the month, I started to feel extremely under the weather and caught a major cold with a good side of flux and nearly thought I would die along the plane ride ! Okay, I'm being dramatic here, ahah, but truth is, I am almost NEVER sick so when I am, it feels like the end of the world; I can't work, I can't study, I can barely go to the gym and the worst part is, I can't eat..! Back when I was in Prep school, I used to get sick all the time. Like really ! Thing is, I wasn't taking good care of my health; studying until very late at night, waking up super early, a very little exercise and during the weekends, while I should have been catching up on sleep and resting, I was partying my head off until my immune system would crash and leave me in bed for two to three weeks. Other than the fact that I used to get sick constantly, for your immune system to take two to three weeks to fight a simple cold or the flux is a sign that it's getting pretty weak. And when I had to spend the entire Winter break and Holiday season in bed, and had to miss my school's ski trip one year because I had gotten strep throat, it was a massive eye-opener !

This is when I decided to take positive actions towards my health and to start living the healthy way ! One trick I developed along the way was to boost my immune system for those times I would lack sleep or gym time due to school/work. This way, it can fight back viruses way more easily, without falling apart or needing medicine. And you know, nowadays, who even has time to be sick ? I posted the following lines around the same time last year and since you guys have been very responsive to this article, I thought I'd share it again today, slightly improved ;) Here are 10 foods I research and red about that will totally boost your immune system for those terrible end of semester:

1. Chicken Noodle Soup: You know what they said: When your sick, drinking more fluids will help you fighting the disease better. And I'm not talking here about extra-high-in-sodium commercial can soup ! A good old chicken noodle soup doesn't only provide the fluids needed to help fight off viruses, but it also it's also thought to have a mild anti-inflammatory effect than can help ease cold symptoms. MY ADVICE: Keep some organic chicken stock on hand, just in case !

2. Garlic: When eaten raw, this flavorful healer contain numerous antiseptic and immunity boosting compounds. As an added plus, garlic helps to open clogged sinuses. MY ADVICE: The classic strong mint flavoured toothpaste from Marvis is your best friend here ;)

3. Citrus fruits: Citrus fruits come packed with vitamin C, a common cold remedy most people turn to when they start feeling sick. Vitamin C battles viruses before you even get sick. Studies have found that this antioxidant can reduce cold symptoms by 23 per cent, and all that's needed is just one to eight grams. MY ADVICE: Besides citrus fruits, other foods that have high amounts of vitamin C include papaya, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, tomatoes, broccoli, brussel sprouts and red bell peppers.

4. Mushrooms: No herbal medicine cabinet should be without mushrooms ! It promotes white blood cell production, which helps your body fight off an infection. MY ADVICE: The most potent cold- and flu-fighting shrooms are shitake, maitake and reishi.

5. Yogurt: It is a natural probiotic, which means it replaces all the good bacteria in your system. Studies have shown that eating a cup of low-fat yogurt each day can reduce your susceptibility to colds by 25 percent. MY ADVICE: Not all brands have that particular bacteria, so check labels and be sure to go organic !

6. Tea: It is quite a soothing remedy for a sore throat but also doubles as a virus fighter. It also helps to thin mucus and ensure proper hydration. Harvard study shows that people who drank 5 cups of black tea for 2 weeks had more of the immune boosting protein interferon in their blood than those who didn’t. MY ADVICE: For added health benefit, sip green or black tea. Both are filled with flavonoids, which are potent antioxidants.

7. Brussels Sprouts: They are an essential vegetable to your diet. They protect our DNA, stabilize white blood cells and contain a good serving of vitamin C, which boosts your immune system, as we  already established. More importantly, they help nourish the thymus gland, which controls much of your immune system function. MY ADVICE: Eat two servings a day of these beta-carotene rich sprouts for optimal health !

8. Oatmeal: Not only it's a great comfort food when you’re under the weather but these grains also contain beta-glucan, a type of fiber with antimicrobial and antioxidant capabilities more potent than echinacea ! It really acts like a full combo: It boosts immunity, speeds wound healing, and may help antibiotics work better ! MY ADVICE: Stir some into plain yogurt and top with a berries or honey for a power-packed snack.

9. Oysters: Selenium, plentiful in shellfish such as oysters, helps white blood cells produce cytokines, a protein that helps clear flu viruses out of the body. Oysters may not be anyone's favorite food, but they are a a great source of zinc, which can help strengthen T cells (the cells that detect germs). MY ADVICE: Two servings a week along with some champagne & red wine vinegar mignonette (unless you're pregnant or planning to be).

10. Coconut Oil: Besides being excellent for your thyroid and your metabolism, coconut oil is rich in lauric acid, which converts in your body to monolaurin. Monolaurin is the actual compound found in breast milk that strengthens a baby’s immunity. MY ADVICE: When selecting coconuts and coconut oil, make sure you choose organic ones that are unrefined, unbleached, made without heat processing or chemicals, and are non-GMO.

The post 10 Immune System Boosting Food appeared first on PBTH **

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