Wondering how to boost your immune system?
A strong functioning immune system is highly dependent on a healthy well-balanced diet. If you're wondering how to boost your immune system against the reported "Worst Flu in At Least 15 Years", or The Worst Month on Record For Flu Cases in NSW's one of the best natural ways is to consume more foods that contain immune boosting compounds.
The following foods are chock-full of immune strengthening vitamins and minerals.
Immune Boosting Foods
Seaweed: A highly nutritious superfood that contains extraordinary health-promoting compounds is sourced from our oceans, seaweed helps boost the immune system and reduces the risk of cold and flu. Seaweed is rich in minerals and trace minerals like iodine and selenium, which are crucial for healthy thyroid function. There are many different types of seaweed including kelp, nori, and arame, which you can purchase from health food stores and supermarkets. You can use seaweed to make nori rolls, miso soup, and stir-fry’s. Or try adding seaweed to your meal as dried flakes. A great way to supercharge pasta sauces and other winter dishes.
Ginger: Adding ginger to stir-fries, soups, curries, salad dressings, veggie juices or drunk as a tea (Bodhi Organic ZesTEA), is a great way to boost your immunity during winter and reduce inflammation, along with improving circulation and digestion.
Super Mushrooms: Shitake mushrooms enhance the immune system’s ability to combat infections including colds and flu. Soak dried mushrooms for around 30 minutes, add thin slices to soups, stir-fries, or casseroles.
Garlic: Adding garlic to meals is one of the best ways to ward off colds and flu. Garlic contains potent immune strengthening and anti-viral compounds. To get the most out of your garlic, crush it first and don’t over-cook it. Raw is best.
Vitamin C Rich Foods: Eat a variety of vitamin C rich fruits such as oranges, lemons, kiwi fruit and berries. Vitamin C is a powerful immune enhancer with anti-viral action, which will help protect you from coming down with a cold or flu this winter.
Herbs and Herbal teas
Kick back with a cup of Herbal Tea like lemon balm (Bodhi Organic SereniTEA), liquorice (Bodhi Organic TranquiliTEA) or ginger (Bodhi Organic ZesTEA). These tasty, healing teas have the ability to bolster your immunity to fight off winter nasties. If you’ve a cold or sore throat ginger tea is particularly soothing with a slice of lemon and some manuka honey.
Green Tea: Drinking green tea (Bodhi Organic ViridiTEA) daily can help support healthy immune function. Research indicates that the polyphenols, found in green tea, have potent antioxidant properties, and an immune-enhancing benefit. Green tea can be drunk hot or included as an ingredient in delicious recipes like this delicious kale and mango green tea smoothie.
Echinacea: Echinacea (Bodhi Organic ImmuniTEA) is a highly effective immune boosting herb commonly prescribed by naturopaths and herbalists to prevent and treat colds and flu, and increase the body’s resistance to infection. These can be enjoyed as a tea, or a tincture.
Spice up Meals: Many spices are rich in antioxidants which help support your body's natural immune defence. Most often used in cooking turmeric, thyme, chilli, oregano, coriander, cloves and ginger are all excellent choices.
Click here for other natural flu treatments and remedies.
By Lisa Guy, naturopath and founder of Bodhi Organic Tea