4 Tips to Boost Your Immune System
A recent article from EatThis.com spoke with a few dietitians about some tips we can boost our immune system as we’re in the cold and flu season.Below is an excerpt from the EatThis.com article.
- Increase Your Antioxidant Intake
One of the best food-related adjustments you can make to help your immunity is adding more antioxidants to your diet.
“Antioxidants are nutrients that buffer free radicals, or fight the bad guys, in your body and keep free radicals from causing damage to your cells,” says Amy Goodson, MS, RD, CSSD, LD author of The Sports Nutrition Playbook, “and you can find these antioxidants in lots of fruits and vegetables like citrus fruits, pomegranates and pomegranate juice, and berries.”
- Sip Green Tea
Green tea has a number of health benefits, like helping your metabolism, reducing your risk of cancer, and helping your brain health. And on top of all of those things, it can also help boost your immunity!
“Green tea contains epigallocatechin gallate, or EGCG, which is a type of plant-based compound called a catechin that helps protect against cellular damage done by free radicals, or the bad guys that cause harm to the cells,” says Goodson, “and research suggests that catechins like EGCG may also help prevent inflammation and some chronic diseases.”
- Load Up on Green Veggies
Many people think of vitamin C when they think of immunity and for good reason. “Vitamin C helps encourage the production of white blood cells, known as lymphocytes and phagocytes, which help protect the body against infection,” says Goodson, “and many people don’t know that green veggies like spinach, kale, broccoli, green beans contain vitamin C.”
- Get Plenty of Sleep
While it’s important to incorporate healthy foods into your diet to protect your immunity, it’s also crucial to make sure you’re getting enough good-quality sleep.
“It’s important to understand how much sleep your body needs every night to optimize your overall health in order to give your immune system the best possible chance at fighting off illness and infection,” says Courtney D’Angelo, MS, RD, author at Go Wellness, “because when sleeping, important infection-fighting molecules are being created, and if you aren’t getting enough sleep, those molecules are getting interrupted, which can cause weakened immunity.”
To read the full article from EatThis.com, click here.