The Coronavirus* disease, COVID-19, has got the attention of the whole world. It has spread rapidly since the outbreak began in the east of China in December 2019. It initially produces the same symptoms as the common cold, but these can develop into a fever, breathing difficulties and pneumonia. People with weakened immune systems (the elderly and people with other underlying medical conditions) are becoming more seriously ill than young, healthy people. The virus outbreak has caught all of us off guard and it has now become imperative that we strengthen our immunity and the first step is to modify your diet with healthier options.
Good nutrition is essential to a strong immune system, which offers protection from seasonal illness such as the flu and other health problems including arthritis, allergies, abnormal cell development, and cancers. Help protect yourself against infection and boost your immunity by including these nutrients in your eating plan.
Protein plays a role in the body’s immune system, especially for healing and recovery. Eat a variety of protein foods including seafood, lean meat, poultry, eggs, beans and peas, soy products and unsalted nuts and seeds.
Vitamin A helps regulate the immune system and protect against infections by keeping skin and tissues in the mouth, stomach, intestines and respiratory system healthy. Get this immune-boosting vitamin from foods such as sweet potatoes, carrots, broccoli, spinach, red bell peppers, apricots, eggs or foods labeled “vitamin A fortified,” such as milk or some cereals.
Vitamin C helps protect you from infection by stimulating the formation of antibodies and boosting immunity. Include more sources of this healthy vitamin by choosing citrus fruits such as oranges, grapefruit, and tangerines, or red bell pepper, papaya, strawberries, tomato juice or foods fortified with vitamin C, such as some cereals.
Vitamin E works as an antioxidant, neutralizes free radicals and may improve immune function. Include vitamin E in your diet with fortified cereals, sunflower seeds, almonds, vegetable oils (such as sunflower or safflower oil), hazelnuts and peanut butter
Zinc helps the immune system work properly and may help wounds heal. Zinc can be found in lean meat, poultry, seafood, milk, whole grain products, beans, seeds, and nuts.
Other nutrients, including vitamin B6, folate, selenium, iron, as well as prebiotics and probiotics, also may influence immune response and play a role in a healthful eating style. Obtaining these nutrients from foods is preferred, so be sure to speak with your health care provider or a registered dietitian nutritionist before taking any immune-boosting supplements.
Organic Express caters to healthy and organic food that benefits your health and boosts your immune system. With fresh organic vegetables, superfoods and healthful ingredients, we bring you a healthy palate of dishes.