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10 Foods That Boost Immunity

This time of year it is so important to do all you can to boost your immune system. Regular chiropractic adjustments and excellent nutrition are two crucial components to a high functioning immune system.

Try your best to get your 64+ ounces of water each day, and keep your plate colorful with plenty of fruits and vegetables. In addition, try working in these 10 immune boosting foods to your meal plans!

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10 Foods That Boost Immunity

1. Yogurt. Yogurt contains probiotics. These live cultures are healthy bacteria that help keep your gut and intestinal tract free of disease-causing germs. These disease-fighting warriors can be found in all types of yogurt, including paleo friendly coconut milk yogurt!

A study done from the University of Vienna in Austria discovered that just one 7 ounce serving of yogurt each day found that consuming probiotics through yogurt was just as effective in boosting immunity as popping probiotics in pill form.

One Swedish study found that employees who consumed a daily dose of probiotics had 33 percent less sick days than those who took a placebo.

Choose a yogurt labeled with “live and active cultures” to make sure it’s got the healthy probiotics you need!

2. Garlic. Garlic contains the active ingredient allicin, known for fighting bacteria and infections. In a study done by British researchers, 146 people were given either a placebo or garlic extract for 12 weeks.

At the end of the study, those who were given garlic extract were 67 percent less likely to catch a cold.

Garlic is also linked to lowering the chance of colorectal cancer (30 percent lower rate) and stomach cancer (50 percent lower rate).

3. Oats and Barley. Whole grains like oats and barley contain beta-glucan. This is a type of fiber that has antimicrobial and antioxidant capabilities.

Studies found that animals who consume beta-glucan have lower chances of catching influenza, anthrax, and herpes. In humans, it’s been found to boost immunity, speed up healing, and improve the effectiveness of antibiotics.

4. Shellfish. Shellfish contain plenty of selenium. Selenium helps white blood cells produce cytokines. These proteins clear flu viruses out of the body.

Fish rich in omega-3s such as salmon have also been proven to reduce inflammation. This helps protect your lungs from infections and the common cold.

5. Tea. Drinking tea has so many amazing health benefits. Studies show that people who drink 5 cups a day of black tea for two weeks boosted their immune system. This tea increased the amount of interferon in their blood — a great combatant against viruses.

Green tea also will trigger this same reaction! You don’t have to pump your veins full of caffeine to achieve this health benefit. The decaf versions will do the job too.

6. Beef. Beef is a great way to get zinc in one’s diet. Unfortunately, many Americans suffer from a zinc deficiency. Zinc is a great immune system booster because it helps white blood cells develop. White blood cells are the cells in your body that recognize and destroy any bacteria, viruses, or other junk that tries to make you sick.

If beef is not your thing, you can also get a good dose of zinc from oysters, pork, and poultry.

7. Sweet Potatoes. Sweet potatoes are one of the most versatile foods on the planet. Health experts across the board agree that they have many health benefits.

Sweet potatoes are a great source of beta-carotene, which your body turns into vitamin A. Vitamin A is important to a healthy immune system because it helps your skin stay strong and healthy.

Your skin is the first line of defense against germs and illnesses, so it is important to take care of it! When looking for foods rich in beta-carotene, think orange. Carrots, pumpkin, cantaloupe, and squash are also great sources of this nutrient.

8. Mushrooms. According to Douglas Schar, DipPhyt, MCPP, MNIMH, director of the Institute of Herbal Medicine in Washington, DC., “studies show that mushrooms increase the production and activity of white blood cells, making them more aggressive. This is a good thing when you have an infection.”

Want to give your immune system a boost? Eat this tasty fungus!

9. Citrus Fruits. Citrus fruits are a great food to eat to boost the immune system. Vitamin C is believed to increased the production of white blood cells in the body, giving your body more warriors to fight off disease and germs.

Your body doesn’t make enough or store enough vitamin C on its own, so eating citrus fruits such as grapefruit, oranges, lemons, limes, tangerines, and clementines is a delicious way to eat to your health.

10. Cinnamon. Cinnamon has amazing antiviral, anti-fungal, and antibacterial properties. Because of this, cinnamon actually helps the body fight pathogens that make people sick.

Cinnamon is also one of the easy foods to work into your diet! Toss it in some coffee grounds, throw on top of some fresh fruit, or sprinkle it on top of your sweet potato, and your body will thank you.

You Are What You Eat

True healthcare reform starts in your kitchen. There’s no way around it. If we continue to feed our body’s junk, we are going to look and feel like junk.

It is time to make an effort to consciously think about what types of fuel you are putting in your body, because food is an incredibly powerful medicine! If you fuel your body with whole, immune boosting foods, it will thrive. If you fuel your body with fast, greasy, fried food, it will crumble. You deserve quality fuel.

Pure Chiropractic Can Help

Drs. Hohn and their team at Pure Chiropractic in Howell, Michigan understand that wellness is about more than just chiropractic adjustments.

Pure Chiropractic treats the whole body, nutrition included. We want our patients to feel their best, and eating quality foods is a major part of living your best life.

Call our offices today at (810) 588-4036 or click here to schedule your appointment. We look forward to hearing from you and helping you in your journey to a healthier life!