The immune system, like the other major systems in the body is complex. For optimal functioning in which the body naturally fights off infection, flus and keeps your energy systems at their best, it is not a matter of eating one or two specific types of food but rather making sure that you eat a number of nutrient dense foods on a daily basis to ensure that the key nutrients are available for the immune response to work optimally. So, if you have not been feeling 100% and are lacking energy, here is your 5 Step Immune Reboot Program which should have you feeling better in no time.
1. Load up on superfoods
Superfoods have been given their title thanks to their superior nutritional properties. Including as many of these superfoods in your diet as you can on a daily basis will not only ensure that your body has access to all the key nutrients it needs to support optimal functioning but these foods will also help to give you a boost if you have not been feeling your best.
Beetroot – packed with antioxidants, **the powerful molecules which help to fight against free radicals, the molecules which cause damage and aging within the cell
Lean red meat – rich source of iron and zinc
Kiwi Fruit – rich source of Vitamin C
Berries – packed with Vitamin C and antioxidants
Kale – antioxidant and Vitamin C rich
Chicken soup – if made with bones may increase immune function
Green tea – antioxidant rich source of hydration
Broccoli – another vege choice packed with antioxidants
Seaweed – a natural source of iodine, the nutrient which helps the thyroid to function optimally
Chilli – slightly increases metabolic rate and can help to clear airways
2. Drink right
Dehydration is one of the most common reasons we can feel tired, run down and lethargic. Active adults require at least 1.5-2litres of fluid each day, and if you have been hit with a bug increase this to 2-3 litres a day! Vitamin C rich fruit and vegetable juices and herbal tea along with plain water are all good choices. If you do choose to juice to get a concentrated hit of nutrition, do not forget the nutritional benefits of juicing vegetables. Not only are vegetables including carrots, beetroot and celery packed full of vitamins and minerals but they also contain far less sugar than fruits. And don’t forget your skins – the skins of fruits and veges contain high concentrations of vitamins, minerals and dietary fibre.
3. Include a probiotic in your daily regime
A link between probiotics, the natural bacteria found in the small intestine and immune health has been known for some time and research published in The University of Medicine and Dentistry in New Jersey found probiotics helped reduce the duration of a cold as well as the severity of symptoms. Body Science Naturals Immufix Olive Leaf Extract is naturally rich in both probiotics and antioxidants and can be taken as a daily probiotic.
4. Check your good fats
One of the easiest ways to support the immune system is to make sure that you are getting the right amount of ‘good fats’ each day – the type of fats which act as natural anti-inflammatories in the body. Salmon, tuna and sardines are rich sources of some of these fats, as is a daily dose of Body Science Naturals 3 in 1 Joint Formula which will give you fish oil, krill oil and Vitamin D all in a single dose.
5. Soup it up
Chicken soup has been a favourite remedy for hundreds of years, with many families owning a traditional soup recipe passed through the generations. And it seems that our elders had it right as there is evidence to show that chicken soup with broth made using actual chicken bones may improve immune function. Research published in the American Journal of Therapeutics found that a molecule found in chicken soup, carnosine, helped the body’s immune system to fight the early stages of flu by inhibiting the migration of infected cells around the body.