Even though the world is in turmoil due to pandemic, one of the most important things somehow went under the radar – make your immune system stronger. After all, that’s your first line of defense against anything, including the Covid19 virus. So we made a list of common but very strong food that can help your immune system.
Broccoli and your Immune system
If we could choose just one vegetable, it would be broccoli. It is one of the most nutrient-rich vegetables. It has vitamin K, chromium, potassium, magnesium, vitamin B9, and plenty of vitamin C. It also has compounds indole-3-carbinol and sulforaphane that show anti-cancerogenic abilities, plus sulforaphane is increasing the ability of the organism to create antioxidants. The benefits of broccoli start in the small and big intestine when indigestible fibers come to feed the bacterias in your gut and create short-chain fatty acids, it leads to increasing numbers of good bacterias, healthier guts, and better immunity.
As a signal of good overall health, good gut health is of most importance since it affects almost every part of our body. The connection between good gut bacterias and a healthy mind is new territory. According to scientists at Harvard University Medical School, disturbed digestion can cause anxiety, depression, and stress because the brain and gastrointestinal system are very closely connected. If you have a bad unhealthy diet you can mess up things with the gut-brain connection.
To get the best out of Broccoli, don’t fry them or bake them, boil them preferably on the steam, and when it’s young it can be consumed fresh in a salad. The highest concentration of good things from broccoli is broccoli sprouts. You can get fresh broccoli two times a year, early summer and early fall, but in normal times, it is usually available throughout the whole year, even frozen. As with most vegetables, broccoli can be frozen up to a year and lose just a slight amount of some micronutrients.
Spinach and your Immune system
This plant is often on our plates and that is great because spinach is a superfood due to high amounts of vitamins, fibers, and minerals. Magnesium is essential for the normal functioning of all muscles, including the heart. Potassium helps with extracting water and regulates blood pressure, stimulates detox of the organism, and makes kidneys and heart to work smoother. Beta carotene is a strong antioxidant, B complex vitamins are very important for your nerves, but also for your skin, hair, and nails. Antioxidant lutein is extremely important for the health of your eyes. Fibers in spinach stimulate bowel motility and help in removing waste from the organism and also lowers the possibility of constipation. Spinach is one of the best sources of vitamin K which is important for bone health. Only 100 grams of spinach has almost 4 times the recommended daily dose.
But spinach also has something called oxalic acid, and its crystals can clog kidney canals, so for people with kidney problems, it’s not advised to eat spinach. Oxalic acid can be neutralized to some degree by mixing spinach with milk. Calcium in milk will bind with the oxalic acid and create an insoluble compound that can be easily removed from the organism.
You can get the best out of spinach if it’s only shortly boiled in water or on steam to keep all the good stuff. Young spinach can also be eaten fresh. Spinach season lasts almost the whole season and it is always available frozen but then it can lose some of the flavors.
Probably everyone heard that garlic alone or in some combination is a great natural cure for cold and flu. It doesn’t really need to be attached to some magical properties, but it is true that it gives the human body a lot of good. Except for allicin, the main component for the antiviral, antifungal, and antibacterial properties, garlic also has few more compounds of similar properties and they all in synergy help boost the immune system.
Allicin is made under the influence of enzyme alliinase when there is some physical damage to garlic, like slicing or crushing. Allicin has sulfur which gives garlic a specific and well-known smell and taste. Allicin is also a very unstable element so it quickly changes to different compounds with sulfur that gives garlic its healing abilities – helping in the defensive response of some types of white blood cells when they encounter certain viruses, mostly those of common cold and flu.
Garlic is also important in prevention – studies show that it lowers the risk of getting common cold or flu, time of being sick and can ease the symptoms also. In one 3 month study, 146 healthy volunteers were divided into 2 groups. One was getting garlic supplements and the other group placebo. The first group had about 63% lower risk of getting a common cold, and for those that did get sick, the common cold lasted 70% shorter.
To get the most out of garlic in cooking, it is good to cut the garlic at least 10 minutes before using it, because heat is destroying enzyme alliinase and it’s good to give some time for more of the allicin compound to be made before cooking. Same thing if you eat garlic raw.
To get the most health benefits of garlic you need to eat 2-3 garlic parts a day. If you use supplements, the normal dosage is between 600 and 1200 mg per day. More than that and you might get a toxic response instead.
Disclaimer: This text is for general informational purposes only. It should not be used to self-diagnose and it is not a substitute for a medical exam, cure, treatment, diagnosis, and prescription or recommendation. Always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Dimology – Healthy World are not liable or responsible for any advice, course of treatment, diagnosis or any other information, services or product you obtain through this site.