The Coronavirus may have stopped us from going outdoors, but it can’t stop us from making ourselves healthy from the inside. As you stay home to #StopTheSpread of the virus, why not work on boosting your immunity?
This is a good time to plan your meals in such a manner that would give you the necessary nutrients from all the veggies and fruits that would amp up your health quotient and keep you both mentally and physically fit. Most importantly, it is essential that you get a regular dose of Vitamin C, as it plays a vital role in maintaining a healthy immune system, and also helps to reduce the duration of bacterial and viral infection growth.
Here is a list of the vegetables and fruits that you could add to your meals to achieve an improved immune system– let’s get started!
Carrots: This fibrous vegetable is best known for being a rich source of Vitamin A and antioxidants. Carrots not only aid in improving your eyesight and keeping blood cholesterol low, but they also reduce your risk of developing cancer.
Spinach: There’s a reason why Popeye always had some spinach in hand. The leafy green vegetables are a storehouse of Vitamins A and C, which naturally builds a protective field to keep out different kinds of bacteria and viruses from your body. Consuming spinach also ensures a sufficient supply of iron to the body, which in turn boosts immunity and keeps your energy levels high, making it easier to do your day-to-day chores.
Cabbage: A leafy vegetable that needs very little preparation, cabbages are packed with Vitamins C, B6 and K, which help keep our body’s inflammatory response in check. This, in turn, enhances the natural healing process of the body against any possible infection.
Cauliflower: Cauliflowers carry high amounts of vitamins and dietary fibers, and are known to strengthen the cardiovascular system of the body. They also have anti-inflammatory properties.
Eggplant (Brinjal): Adding eggplant to your diet helps control your blood sugar levels and decreases the chance of cardiovascular complications if you are a diabetic. This nutrient-rich vegetable is packed with antioxidants and vitamins, that improve your immunity.
Capsicum: Bell-peppers or capsicums (green, red and yellow) are excellent sources of Vitamins A and C. Out of which, red capsicums often retain a higher amount of these vitamins. All varieties of capsicums are rich in dietary fibers, which are highly beneficial for the digestive and immune systems.
Lemon: Lemons are the powerhouse of Vitamin C and help fight against respiratory complications like asthma and common colds. Lemon also aids in the absorption of iron and in strengthening the immune system against the flu.
Garlic: Garlic contains several medicinal properties and compounds that can help you combat common colds and other infections. As it is packed with high amounts of manganese and vitamin C, consuming garlic can help detoxify and strengthen your body.
Ginger: Ginger ranks as one of the best ingredients in the handbook for better digestion and immunity building. It is often used for flu nausea relief. Ginger is an excellent source of antioxidants and can help in reducing muscle pain and enhancing heart health.
Oranges and Sweet Lime: Oranges and Sweet lime (mosambi) are an excellent source of vitamin C and antioxidants. Consuming one of these a day along with your breakfast helps reduce the risk of kidney stones and heart diseases. Oranges are also rich in fiber and citric acid, which helps improve your body’s iron absorption.
Pineapple: Rich in fiber and water content, pineapples help keep your digestive tract healthy. This fruit is rich in Vitamins C, A, and K, as well as potassium and zinc. Pineapples are also full of antioxidants that help combat diseases and boost immunity.
Fresh berries: Berries are packed with antioxidants and are one of the best food choices to boost your immunity. Adding a handful of strawberries or raspberries to your meals can help in reducing cholesterol and blood pressure. In addition, berries also contain high amounts of fiber and vitamin C – both of which are vital for good heart health. They can also be delicious snacks for any time of the day.
Papaya: Papayas are an excellent source of protein and vitamins. Studies show, consuming one papaya provides you with more than 200% of your daily dose of Vitamin C. Make them a part of your breakfast or snack on them during the day to use the best of its nutrients to improve your immunity.
Kiwi: Rightfully known as a ‘superfood’, kiwis are packed with vitamin C and antioxidants, which amplify cell repairing properties and develop your immunity system. Kiwis are also known for enhancing your respiratory and heart functions.
Guava: This tropical fruit is low in calories and high in protein and Vitamin C. Guavas are extremely beneficial for your digestive and immunity systems. Having a glass of guava juice is also a fantastic way to beat the heat during summer.
Tomatoes: Yes, tomato is a fruit, not a vegetable as commonly assumed. If eaten cooked or even raw, tomatoes are a valuable dietary source of antioxidants and Vitamin C. They are also rich in potassium and help keep good heart health and boost resistance against diseases.
During this time of the lockdown, for those of us spending time at home with our family, it gives us time to slow down and take care of ourselves through simple self-care routines and healthy diet plans. Now is the time to work towards improving your immunity system and allowing yourself to stay protected from any possible infection, this might also be highly beneficial in the long run.
Stay home, stay healthy and stay safe!