Following part 1 of Nutrients for a healthy immune system, this is the next part of the post which includes 5 more nutrients.
PROBIOTICS – are live cultures of ‘friendly’ bacteria which stimulate the production go a chemical in your body called gamma interferon. This chemical makes your body more resistant to infection by enhancing its natural defences. Probiotics also boost your digestive system. They are especially important if you are taking antibiotics, which can destroy your gut bacteria.
Food sources – Live yoghurt
Yoghurt is the only natural food source of probiotics
STARCHY CARBS – Eating starchy carbohydrates will help to keep your strength up in case an illness strikes. Choose foods high in fibre, which cleans out your digestive system and has been shown to reduce the risk of bowel cancer.
Wholemeal bread is also high in fibre, so it will clean as well as strengthen
ZINC – is essential for your immune system cells and is also involved in wound healing. Taking 15mg of zinc daily can speed up the rate of recovery from a cold.
Food Sources – Eggs, seafood, pumpkin seeds, brazil nuts, lean meat and liver
Meat and seafood are high in zinc, while vegetarians can rely on nuts, eggs and pumpkin seeds
CAROTENOIDS – are plant pigments that give yellow, orange and red fruits and vegetables their colour. They are also powerful antioxidants. Beta-carotene is the best known and can be converted into Vitamin A by your body.
SELENIUM – works with Vitamin E to produce powerful antioxidant effects. It is recognised as a preventative for many cancers and also asthma, liver disorders and cardiovascular disease.
Food Sources – present in soil, so foods grown in selenium rich soil will be correspondingly rich in selenium. Brazil nuts, tuna, beef, cod, chicken and whole grains
Brazil nuts are the richest source of selenium
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