What women should eat now to boost their immune system

foods that boost immune system

It’s often unclear what influences the function of your immune system, and how these factors affect your overall health. So, what can you do to positively influence your immune system? Advice, particularly about diet, changes constantly. We’ll go over foods and micronutrients that are considered beneficial for immune system processes, foods that potentially weaken your immune system, and other practices to try and live a healthier life overall. 

Boosting Your Immune System

Your immune system defends your body from infection. What can you do to help your immune system do its job properly? Due to the complexity of the immune system, there isn’t a simple answer to this question, however there are some good tips you can follow. . If you take proper care of yourself, you’re more likely to help your immune system and overall health. Focus on how you treat your body and other factors that are within your control. Make healthy choices when it comes to activities like exercise, diet, and sleep. 

Foods that Boost your Immune System

High-quality produce and other fresh foods can’t always be found. When fresh foods are unavailable, plain frozen foods, or frozen foods that have no added sugar or sodium, maintain much of the original nutritional value. So, what should you look for to have a positive impact on your immune system and overall health? Foods that are rich in antioxidants help fight inflammation. Some foods that might be beneficial in your diet include:

  • Mushrooms

  • Fruits including acai berries, blueberries, and watermelon

  • Oysters

  • (Low fat) yogurt

  • Spinach and other dark leafy greens

  • Ginger

Vitamins, Minerals, and Nutrients to Strengthen your Immune System

Micronutrients are necessary for the function of many bodily systems, including the immune system. Vitamin C can help you prevent or heal from an infection faster. Foods that are rich in vitamin C include spinach, bell peppers, and strawberries. Vitamin E, found in nuts and plant oils, helps fight infection as well. Iron transports oxygen and has a role in many immune system processes. Animal products such as red meat, chicken, and fish contain iron. Zinc, found in foods such as baked beans and yogurt, helps produce new white blood cells. Selenium, folic acid, and vitamins A and D also play a role in strengthening your immune system. Please note, more isn’t always better. Follow nutritional guidelines set by trusted organizations (such as the FDA) or by a nutritional expert that knows your specific needs. 


Natural Herbs to Boost your Immune System

Scientific proof that there are herbs to boost your immune system is lacking. Some herbs might seem to support your immune system by increasing antibody levels in the blood, but it remains unclear whether the herbs have a lasting positive impact on overall immunity. If you have questions about natural remedies, we suggest seeking advice from your primary care provider or medical professional familiar with your specific needs.

Other Ways to Boost your Immune System

Food isn’t the only factor that can influence how your immune system functions. Other factors that influence how your immune system functions are age, sex, genetics, and lifestyle decisions. Although many of these aspects aren’t within your control, you can alter your behavior. To better understand the links between your behavior and its impact on your immune system, it’s necessary to research further. 

Lifestyle Practices

You do have a certain amount of control over how you go about your day. Lifestyle practices can influence your overall health and, to protect your health and improve everyday function, you can:

  • Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep every night

  • Exercise regularly (for example, take a 30-minute daily walk)

  • Eat nutrient-rich foods (for example, a colorful variety of fruits and vegetables)

  • Manage your stress levels

  • Nurture your relationships

  • Work on having a positive mindset

  • Don’t smoke

  • Drink in moderation (if at all)

  • Stay current with recommended vaccines

Foods that Weaken your Immune System 

To maintain a healthy and sustainable diet, you need balance and moderation. Poor nutrition and a diet full of overly processed foods can be damaging to your immune system. Certain foods can slow down natural processes and negatively impact the function of your immune system. However, you don’t need to avoid every food that’s considered unhealthy, the key is moderation and monitoring your food intake. Sustaining such a restrictive diet is incredibly challenging (nearly impossible) and not recommended. 

It’s important to know which foods are most likely to cause you problems, however you decide to approach your diet. Foods that increase the risk of weakening your immune system should be eaten in moderation. Foods that can cause inflammation or otherwise weaken your immune system include:

  • Added sugar or artificial sweeteners

  • High levels of salt

  • Fried foods and other foods high in saturated fat

  • Processed meats

  • Additives (for example, emulsifiers)

  • Highly refined carbs

If you have questions about improving your diet, we suggest speaking with your primary care provider or a nutritional expert.

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