Aside from running for medicine, you could try to prevent ailments by strengthening your immune system. When defenses drop, viruses and bacteria get the better of it.
Many foods have the ability to strengthen the immune system when taken regularly. We know some by heart, like oranges, or honey that defend against colds. Others are real discoveries, such as chocolate, mushrooms or many aromatic herbs , real natural antibiotics. But let’s see together the top ten of the most effective foods to strengthen our immune defenses.
Vegetables: excellent bitter ones for their purifying properties. Green light for radicchio, chicory, dandelion, catalonia (both cooked and raw). Perfect those orange or red (carrots, squash, beets) rich in beta-carotene – serves to increase the number of cells that fight infection and help eliminate free radicals. Cabbage and cauliflower are also very important for their anticancer action. Also useful tomatoes and peppers for vitamin C and polyphenols, better if taken raw, in salads.
Garlic and onion: garlic contains sulfur, which inhibits bacterial growth and keeps the intestine clean. In addition, allicin and sulfide stimulate the multiplication of cells that serve to fight infections. Allicin has strong antibiotic, antimicrobial and antifungal effects. Those who take garlic regularly, suffer from 46% less seasonal colds and heal faster from colds.
Honey: excellent ally for health. It contains substances with a high bactericidal action and acts as a natural antibiotic. With the arrival of the first colds, a teaspoon of honey in the morning, dissolved in milk, tea or coffee or spread on bread, helps to disinfect the upper respiratory tract, preventing and countering cough, cold and sore throat.
Fruits: in particular the one rich in vitamin C such as citrus fruits, which help the immune system to protect us from diseases as well as strengthening the body, promoting the absorption of the iron contained in plant foods. But red grapes and potassium-rich bananas also strengthen bones.
Legumes: rich in iron. Lentils, beans, chickpeas and peas should be consumed every day, well cooked to be better tolerated by the intestine and with the peel, where anti-cancer substances are concentrated. Excellent soy, whose richness in phytoestrogens defends against breast and uterus tumors.
Dark chocolate should never be missing in our diets, as it is able to strengthen a group of lymphocytes, capable of improving the adaptation of our defenses to the changing of infections.
Yogurt: rich in live and active lactic ferments, it is able to improve the intestinal flora and protect it from any enemy bacteria.
Spices: black pepper, ginger, cloves and cinnamon, reactivate the metabolism and facilitate the disposal of waste.
Mushrooms: they contain beta-glucans, complex carbohydrates that improve the activity of the immune system against infections and against cancer. Mushrooms are rich in selenium – which helps white blood cells make cytokines (protein molecules) – and beta-glucan, an immunostimulant that activates white blood cells, which are responsible for defending against infections.
Tea: according to some Harvard University researchers drinking five cups of black tea a day, our immune system quadruples its strength thanks to theanine. Also recommended is the intake of green tea against free radicals.