Help your immune system to fight illness effectively by making sure that your diet is full of foods to boost and maintain it
Your immune system is your body’s self-defence mechanism. By paying attention to your diet, you can boost your immunity and avoid catching some illnesses in the first place or speed up your recovery if you do succumb. In particular, you should build a healthy immune system before the winter to avoid colds and flu. Make sure you eat the regular meals to keep your strength up so that your body is fit enough to cope with illness.
Foods to Choose
Many immune-boosting nutrients are found in fresh fruit and vegetables. This is why doctors recommend that people eat five portions of fruit and vegetables every day. If you are unable to buy fresh produce daily, choose frozen products rather than tinned, as they retain more nutrients.
Eat vegetables raw or lightly cooked and reduce your intake of sugary, fatty foods such as cake and biscuits and cut down on alcohol and caffeine.
Fruits and vegetables contain most of the nutrients you need to maintain immunity
If levels of free radicals, produced during normal body processes, build up, they can damage body cells, influencing your health. Free radicals are linked to reduced immunity, age related conditions and coronary problems, Parkinson’s disease and some cancers.
Antioxidants neutralise free radicals, rendering them unable to cause damage. Some are found naturally in your body in the form of enzymes, but many are obtained from vegetables and fruits. Antioxidants include Vitamin C and beta-carotene (found in various fruit and vegetables), vitamin E (found in nuts and seeds), mixed carotenoids (in dark coloured fruits) and the minerals selenium (in brazil nuts) and zinc (in seafood)
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