The number of people testing positive for COVID-19 has seen an alarming spike causing the WHO to declare the outbreak as a pandemic. Travel bans have been imposed worldwide, and countries have implemented lockdowns to safeguard its people. During a global crisis of this scale, practising different methods of self-care is more important now than ever. While washing your hands properly and social distancing are the best ways to fight the coronavirus disease, there are other practises you should consider incorporating into your lifestyle.
Eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and getting the recommended amount of proper sleep all contribute to this. You should also refrain from smoking, and should think about limiting alcohol consumption.
Like most other people, you probably now find yourself stuck indoors, with schools, colleges, and offices closed. This may make you more prone to snacking or binge-eating as you stream your favourite TV show. Unfortunately, this can be unhealthy and may affect your immune system negatively. Instead, you can opt to include different foods to boost immunity in fun ways so that eating healthy and mindfully doesn’t become a bore.
Here’s a list of the best immune-boosting foods to include in your diet for a healthier you!
Vegetables and greens
Vegetables have to be on top of the list since they offer the most nutrients. However, eating your greens doesn’t have to be such a chore! Mix things up by experimenting with different recipes. Mushrooms are considered great foods to boost immunity, so adding a handful to your pasta or in your sandwich will not only add taste and texture but will also increase your intake of immune-boosting vitamins and minerals. You can even toss in a few in your paneer gravy to make it extra creamy!
Both ginger and garlic offer anti-inflammatory benefits, and garlic increases the production of virus-fighting white blood cells, making them both perfect to include in your diet. In a pan, saute some flavourful garlic in butter to add to your morning toast, and you’ll have your own version of garlic bread!
Veggies like bell peppers, spinach, broccoli, avocado, and sweet potato are also great at boosting immunity, and it doesn’t hurt that they also feature as essential ingredients in easy weight loss tips too.
Fruits and berries
There’s a long list of fruits that boost immunity, but the best ones are citrus fruits. This is because they offer the highest amount of vitamin C, which is an important and essential nutrient for the body. Vitamin C also helps produce white blood cells and builds the immune system. Since the body does not naturally produce or store vitamin C, oranges, grapefruits, and lemons should be incorporated into your diet. Add a few to a colourful fruit salad, or squeeze out some fresh orange juice or lemonade for you and your loved ones.
Speaking of fruits that boost immunity, berries are also a delightful way to improve your health. Feel free to gorge on strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, acai berries, and more since they are rich in antioxidants, which are compounds that help fight diseases and viruses in the body. Stock the fridge with these and go crazy experimenting with healthy breakfast smoothie recipes!
Nuts and seeds
Nuts and seeds are some of the best immune-boosting foods. You can never go wrong with almonds, walnuts, or sunflower seeds. Most nuts are actually packed with healthy fats, as well as antioxidants and essential vitamins that the body needs. To add to that, eating a handful of almonds can help you meet your daily vitamin E requirements as well!
You can grind nuts into fine dust with a blender to garnish cakes, salads, and smoothies, or you can slice them into fine slivers with a chopper and toss them in your gravies for a final touch.
Certain types of dairy, like cheese and yoghurt, are extremely beneficial for the body and the immune system. Yoghurt contains probiotics that help fight diseases and improves gut health better than any other food. Cheese contains zinc, which also boosts the immune system and fights disease in the body.
You can enjoy both of them plain and as they are, or you can pair them with other foods to increase flavour. For example, you can add plenty of cheese to stuffed bell peppers. Toss in some mushrooms, spices, and paneer or chicken, and you have a plate full of foods that boost immunity!
Many Indian dishes also pair perfectly with yoghurt, even though this varies according to individual tastes. You can even make a delicious glass of buttermilk for yourself, which offers more health benefits than most people know.
Eating mindfully will keep you from becoming overly susceptible to any risk of infection, and will also keep your mind and body healthy through these trying times. Check out Wonderchef’s assortment of recipes online for ideas on healthy snacks and meals to try something new every day