Healthy Living

Avoid These Foods To Protect Your Immune System | by Ken Ezekiel | Jan, 2024

These foods can compromise your immune system.

The main function of the immune system is to protect the body from infection brought by ‘invaders’ such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, and abnormal cells like cancer cells. Once the immune system gets weak and stops working properly, you will get ill.

The immune system does these:

  • fight pathogens and remove them from the body
  • recognize and neutralize harmful substances
  • fight disease-causing changes in the body

To maintain the proper function of your immune system, you must have a healthy lifestyle which consists of a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, herbs, and spices.

Avoid doing and eating foods that can be harmful to this.

  • Foods and drinks high in sugar
  • Processed meats
  • Refined grains
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Salty foods
  • Fried foods
  • Foods with additives that help improve shelf life, texture, and taste of food usually found in ultra-processed foods
  • Food high saturated fats and low in unsaturated fats

If you want something more specific, these specific foods can help boost your immune system:

  • Berries such as blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, and more that you can consume just as it is or as an addition to your smoothie or yogurt.
  • Fish oil as this oil has high levels of Omega 3 fatty acids.
  • Leafy greens such as spinach, kale, and collard greens have high levels of vitamin C along with antioxidants and beta carotene which all help to fight infection.
  • Nuts and seeds contain several vitamins and minerals. Almonds and walnuts are among the best and healthy snacks.
  • Spices like zing, garlic, ginger, and turmeric have immune-boosting properties.
  • Citrus fruits like oranges, grapefruits, tangerines, lemons, and limes contain high levels of vitamin C.
  • Brightly colored vegetables are great sources of vitamin C.
  • Yogurt is best known for its live and active cultures and vitamin D.
  • Olive oil is a healthy fat.

Apart from food, you must also exercise regularly, quit smoking, manage stress, get recommended vaccines, manage weight, have proper sleep, and practice good hygiene.

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