Go to page content

How to Build a Strong Immune System

Whether you’re looking to fend off colds or simply aim to support your body’s natural defenses – these practical steps to enhancing your immune function are what you need for a stronger immune system.

Build strong immune system

The fluctuation of new illnesses, brings up the age old question: Are there foods that can help strengthen the immune system? The answer to this question is a resounding YES! Eating certain foods rich in vitamins, minerals, and other beneficial substances may help give your immune system that strengthening boost.

Let’s take a look at the Top 10 foods for a strong immune system.

1. Citrus Fruits

Citrus fruits are rich in Vitamin C, which is a powerful antioxidant which can help give your immune system a boost. In addition, Vitamin C is believed to increase white blood cell production to help fight infection. Good sources of Vitamin C include oranges, lemons, limes, grapefruit, and tangerines.

2. Broccoli

If you haven’t been finishing up your serving of broccoli, now is the time to do so. Broccoli has been called an immune superfood because of its high content of Vitamins A, C, and E. It also contains a substance called sulforaphane, a phytochemical that causes a reduction in oxidative cell damage and stimulates immune response.

3. Garlic

As you know, garlic enhances the flavor of the foods you eat. However, its distinctive aroma and taste is caused by allicin, a natural compound that stimulates immune cells and improve the body’s response to infection and other illnesses. It also helps in boosting the production of anti-viral T-cells. In addition, it also reduces the amount of stress hormones your body produces.

4. Ginger

Like citrus fruits, ginger not only has antioxidant properties but it is also an anti-inflammatory agent that supports immune health and fights disease. It also prevents the hardening of your arteries and is known to lower blood pressure. It tastes quite strong when eaten raw. Instead, you can grate ginger root in your sauces or salads. You can also blend it into a delicious smoothie.

5. Spinach

Popeye’s favorite food should be your fave as well. These leafy green veggies are rich in Vitamin C and beta-carotene, a compound the body converts to Vitamin A, which is known to fight infection. It also contains Vitamin C and folate, another immune booster. To preserve its nutrients, make sure not to overcook your spinach. Light cooking of spinach makes it easier to absorb its Vitamin A content and allows the release of other nutrients from oxalic acid, which is an antinutrient. Eat it as a salad or blend it into a scrumptious smoothie.

6. Yogurt

When your gut is healthy, you can expect your immune system to be healthy as well. To keep your gut healthy, you must eat yogurt, preferably those labelled with “live and active cultures”. You must also try to find yogurt that is packed with Vitamin D. These probiotics help in keeping your gut microbiome (also known as “good bacteria”) healthy. This microbiome aids in processing nutrients, while serving as a barrier for fighting harmful bacteria. Avoid yogurt brands that are too sweet or flavored. The best yogurt to consume is Greek yogurt. You can take it plain or topped with fruits and nuts.

7. Fatty Fish

Fatty fish, like salmon and tuna, are loaded with immune boosting nutrients which you cannot find in other foods, such as Omega-3 fatty acids (which is great for your heart), Vitamin D, zinc, and selenium. For a healthy immune system, eat fatty fish at least once or twice a week.

8. Green Tea

Green tea is rich in antioxidants called catechins, which helps protect your immune cells from cell damage. It helps in increasing the number of regulatory T-cells that play a major role in immune function. You can also find a polyphenol called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which has anti-viral properties supporting the immune system.

9. Almonds

Crunchy and yummy almonds are rich in Vitamin E, which helps boost your immune system. They also contain healthy fats, enabling the body to absorb Vitamin E easily. It is recommended that you eat a half-serving of almonds on a daily basis to get all the nutrients you need. 

10. Turmeric

Turmeric is that golden spice you find in curry. Rich in curcumin, the compound helps in reducing inflammation, fight free radicals, and maintain overall balance in the immune system. As an anti-inflammatory agent, it helps prevent the development of osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. It also activates infection fighting T-cells and B-cells.

There is no single way to boost your immune system quickly. But if you add the foods we have listed above to your regular diet and make the necessary lifestyle changes, you will gradually build up a strong immune system. This will improve your overall well-being so that your body can easily fight off disease.

References

  1. America’s Best Care Plus. 10 Foods That Help Boost Your Immunity. [Last accessed March 3, 2024]
  2. Healthline. 15 Foods That Boost the Immune System. [Last accessed March 3, 2024]

Share this article on

Was This Article Useful to You?

Want more healthy tips?

Get All Things Health in your mailbox today!

Subscribe to our newsletter

Related Articles

Mono symptoms min scaled
General Health

Best TCM Remedies To Help With Mononucleosis Symptoms

Dubbed the "kissing disease," mononucleosis symptoms occur after coming into contact with an infected person's saliva. These treatments can soothe symptoms and help you heal fast.

Read More
Early covid symptoms min scaled
General Health

Learn How To Spot Early COVID Symptoms

The sooner you detect your early COVID symptoms, the sooner you can start to recover and isolate from others. Learn how to spot the sometimes hard-to-detect early symptoms of COVID here.

Read More
Cold sore treatment min scaled
General Health

6 Ways To Reduce Cold Sore Frequencies

A cold sore may occur when your immune system has been weakened or if you have been overexposed to the sun. These tips can help prevent reoccurrence.

Read More
Healthy lips min scaled
General Health

What Does Your Lip Color Say About Your Health?

Lip discoloration can be as harmless as eating certain foods or as severe as an underlying health condition. Learn what your lip color means here.

Read More

The contents of the All Things Health website are for informational and educational purposes only.
Our website is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.